We may be well and truly on our way into summer in this part of the world, but there’s something about pumpkin that is still so very festive.
Perhaps it’s the conations with pumpkin pie and other, very American, festive treats or perhaps it’s just the colours and memories of plates of roast veggies at Christmas time when I was a little girl.
Whatever it is, pumpkin would have to be one of my fave veggies.
Not only is it a great, weight loss friendly food, it’s also incredibly versatile and tastes great when served in a whole bunch of different ways.
The one thing I haven’t tried with pumpkin is making a dip but when on the hunt for appropriately festive recipes, thought it was high time I gave it a go.
The creamy, almost velvety texture of pumpkin, along with it’s mild flavour lends itself really well to dip as it compliments the other ingredients you mix into it.
Using a vegetable as the base for your dip means that calories are kept low and the nutritional value high, perfect when you’re trying to lose baby weight and/or following a healthy eating plan.
This dip uses roast pumpkin, low fat Greek yoghurt for creaminess (minus the calories), cashew nuts for added protein and some yummy spices for flavour without added salt or sugar.
It’s rather delicious served with veggie sticks, apple slices or my personal favourite, homemade pita bread dippers.
- 1 kg butternut pumpkin, cut in half, lengthways, seeds removed
- 1 carrot, peeled, topped and tailed and cut in half lengthways
- 1/2 cup unsalted, raw cashews, roughly chopped
- 1/4 cup low fat Greek yoghurt
- 2 tsp lemon juice
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1/4 cup fresh coriander leaves
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 4 wholemeal pita bread circles, cut into thumb sized strips
- Preheat oven to 180C
- Line a baking tray with non stick baking paper and place pumpkin halves and carrot on tray.
- Drizzle with olive oil and bake in the oven for 45 min or until cooked through.
- While veggies are cooking, place pita bread under the grill to crisp up then set aside.
- When cooked through, remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly.
- While waiting, place cashews in the bowl of a food processor (or the bowl you’ll use with your stick blender) and process till they are well chopped.
- Using a large spoon and an oven mit, scoop the flesh from the pumpkin skin. It should be nice and ‘mushy’ and come away easily.
- Place the pumpkin flesh and carrot in the bowl of the food processor/mixing bowl.
- Add the yoghurt, lemon juice, vanilla extract and spices.
- Process until smooth (you can leave the dip slightly chunky if you prefer).
- Garnish with coriander and serve!