How many of you struggle with getting your kids to eat rainbow of fruits and veggies? And how many of you battle over getting your littles to try new things, or to eat ANYTHING that’s not pasta or fruit? My guess is many of you. You’re not alone in this struggle, my friends. I have a two-year-old. I totally get it.
I mean, I write a blog about healthy eating and living. I must have a perfect lentil-loving, broccoli-eating, angel child, right? If you think that, you probably haven’t met a toddler. Or at least not mine.
Kid’s can be fickle eaters, that’s for sure. Many struggle with different tastes or textures. And they rarely seem to like trying new things. My kid is no different. I’ve made an effort, though, since the day I started her on solid foods, to encourage healthy eating habits like trying a range of foods and eating a full spectrum of colorful fruits and veggies.
I admit that sometimes she eats nothing for dinner or takes one look at what we’ve made and declares it “yucky” (she tests my patience, that little girl). But most of the time she’s in the kitchen with me tasting as we go. She munches all kinds of raw veggies right off the cutting board. We visit our CSA farm and make trips to the farmer’s market. She loves kohlrabi, procuitto, and Italian parmesan (smart girl!). Her go-to order when we’re eating out is brown rice with beans. My husband and I joke that she’s tried a wider range of foods by two-and-a-half than we had by the ages of twenty-five!
I’m committed to raising a healthy eater, but I understand that it can be hard. So when I heard about The 52 New Foods Challenge: A Family Cooking Adventure for Each Week of the Year I was super excited. Created by a mom, the 52 New Foods Challenge book encourages kids to eat healthy, one food at a time. I’ll be doing a review and giveaway of the book in a few days, but for now let me just tell you that it’s full of ideas for raising healthy eaters.
As part of the 52 New Foods Challenge I wanted to create a recipe using an ingredient that may be new to many kids and most adults, too—baby blue hubbard squash. Don’t you just love the name? We were lucky enough to receive 2 baby blue hubbards in our CSA a few weeks ago, and I couldn’t wait to get into the kitchen with my daughter, Elle, to whip up a batch of Baby Blue Hubbard Hummus.
So grab your favorite kid, grandkid, nice, nephew, roommate, best friend, or partner and make a batch of this colorful hummus. You’ll be amazed by how easy it is and how tasty the results are.
Baby Blue Hubbard Squash Hummus
- 1 baby blue hubbard squash (substitute any hard winter squash you like—butternut, acorn, pumpkin, or kabocha). You may also substitute 1 cup cooked canned pumpkin.
- 1 can cooked chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 3 TBS olive oil
- 1 clove garlic
- 4 TBS tahini (sesame seed butter)
- 1 lemon, juiced
- 1 TSP salt, or to taste
For the squash:
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Pierce the skin of the squash all over with a fork, and then place it in a roasting pan. Cover the pan with foil and roast for 1-1 ½ hours, or until you can easily pierce the flesh with a knife. Remove from the oven and let cool.
- When cool, slice the squash in half lengthwise with a sharp knife. Using a spoon, scoop out and discard the seeds. **This is a great project for kids. Give them a spoon and a bowl and let them scoop away.**
- Once the seeds have been removed, scoop out the cooked flesh and place into a bowl. Discard the remaining skin. Set aside 1 cup of the cooked flesh for the hummus. Don’t worry if you have a little less or a little more, this recipe is very flexible.
For the hummus:
- To a running food processor or blender, add 1 garlic clove. Remove the lid and scrape the sides.
- To the minced garlic, add the remaining ingredients (chickpeas, 1 cup cooked squash, olive oil, garlic, tahini, lemon juice, and salt). Secure the lid and blend. **Kids can help dump in the ingredients, juice the lemon, and press the “on” button.**
- If the mixture is too thick, add a ¼ cup of warm water at a time until you reach the desired consistency.
- Taste! Add more salt or lemon juice if necessary. **Kids are great taste testers. My daughter will eat nearly anything she’s made if it comes directly from the food processor. Just be sure to use clean spoons, and remove the blade first.**
- Serve as a dip with cut up raw veggies or whole-wheat crackers. Or eat it straight-up with a spoon—it’s that good!