Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Mustard Greens and Pumpkin Pasta Sauce

pumpkin mustard pasta in bowl

I have an announcement to make: my six-year-old ate mustard greens and loved them. My challenge as an adventurous cook is my son's aversion to leafy greens. I am always trying to find clever ways to put a little variety in his diet. He does great with carrots, broccoli and green beans, so I guess I shouldn't complain.

This is one quest that I am not willing to give up on for two reasons:
1) I think the more varied his vegetable intake the better for him.
2) Selfishly, I love a good challenge.

Mustard greens are the ultimate challenge. They not only are guilty of being green but they taste bitter and peppery as well. There are ways of taming the latter, but the color handicap is unsurmountable. Through trial and error, I learned that I can serve him spinach, swiss chard and other foes in the form of pesto sauces over pasta without fear of refusal. This is how I came up with this mustard greens and pumpkin pasta sauce. I hope it works on your little ones as well.

pumpkin pasta with strip

Mustard Greens and Pumpkin Pasta (serves 6)

This can be made with swiss chard or spinach instead of the mustard greens. Cook the greens in a pan with some olive oil and chopped garlic for added flavor.

pumpkin mustard pasta close-up

1 cup sauteed chopped mustard greens
1 cup cooked pumpkin or butternut squash
1 cup lowfat sour cream
1 cup shredded mild cheddar
1/2 teaspoon salt

16 oz brown rice pasta or other

While the pasta is cooking according to package direction make the sauce.
Place the cooked greens, pumpkin, sour cream, cheddar and salt in a blender or food processor. Blend until smooth and pour over pasta. Mix well and transfer to serving dish.

pumpkin mustard pasta


Lydia said...

This looks great! I have started making "pestos" with our abundance of bitter greens like mustard and turnip for our kids--lots of garlic and salt and pepper and a touch of basil helps, but it is still VERY green and sometimes elicits groans when I bring it to the table--but it gets eaten! I make it thick enough to be used as a pizza sauce as well, which is a nice change from tomato. I am definitely trying this version next time! Thanks!

VeggieGirl said...


Ramya Vijaykumar said...

Alexa, I was totally bowled by the color and the creamy texture... Nice that you give your son variations in food so he never gets tired... I am surprised that your son like Broccoli not many of us like to have them and at the same time happy for you that he choose to eat healthy...

Stacey Snacks said...

I wish that I could announce that my 43 yr husband loved mustard greens. He's such a pain when it comes to green vegetables. Like a kid!

Happy Thanksgiving Alexa!

maybelle's mom said...

Looks so delicious and healthy. Wonderful.

RecipeGirl said...

What an accomplishment! I'd love to get my little one to down some of those greens too. Will try your method!

Beautiful dish too!

kat said...

Great solution to the problem!

Usha said...

How clever...this pasta looks delicious :-)

Elra said...

This really look delicious, very silky and melt in your mouth type of pasta.

bee said...

you are a genius. this is visually appealing too. here's another way to get kids to eat mustard greens.


i'm off to catch up with all your posts that i've missed.

Robin Sue said...

I had seen this in the background of your chicken dish and was wondering what wonderful dish is was. That is a great way to get in greens. My children love mac and cheese so to sneak in some greens may just work out for me. I have never had mustard greens, most other greens but never these, so a new thing to add to my list!

Fearless Kitchen said...

This looks delicious. It's a really creative way to get more greens into your son!

Mike of Mike's Table said...

I absolutely love the look of that sauce...so thick and vibrant in color. It sounds delicious!

Sophie said...

What a savory and tasty way to sneak in the veggies :). I love this idea, it sounds creamy and delicious; I'm definitely making this soon! Have a lovely Thanksgiving!

Kevin said...

That looks nice and creamy and good. I have been wanting to try mustard greens.

Shelly Borrell said...

I love the look of this unique recipe. I wish I could take a bite.

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