Thursday, August 2, 2012

Sunny Squash "Greenies" - Sunflower Butter-Squash Dessert Bars Recipe

My friend from Molly's Lunch Box told me about these Primal Almond Butter Pumpkin Brownies that she made, only she subbed SunButter instead of nut butter. And she added some spice and chocolate too.  Not sure if SunButter would be, but with almond butter (and without the spices or chocolate,) these are considered Paleo, for anyone on that diet. 
I opted for squash versus pumpkin because I had several pounds of it from recent CSA boxes!

Sunny Squash "Greenies"

1 cup SunButter (or a nut butter of your choice)
3/4 c mashed squash or pumpkin (canned or steamed)
1 egg
1 tsp baking soda
1-2 tsp pumpkin pie spice, separated
1/2 c chocolate chips


Preheat oven to 350 F
Step 1: Combine SunButter, squash, egg, baking soda and 1/2-1 tsp pumpkin pie spice in a bowl. Mix well.

Step 2: Pour into a greased 8x8 baking pan

Step 3: Sprinkle remaining 1-1.5 tsp pumpkin pie spice over the top, swirling it gently around with a spoon if too much gets dumped in one spot (Oops!) Sprinkle chocolate chips evenly over the top.

Step 4: Bake at 350 F for 25 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. (Check at 2- to 3-minute intervals after the initial 25-minutes.)
No green...
They look great right? Why are they called "Greenies," you ask? Well. The sunflower seeds apparently react with baking soda and turn green. And it's kind of a delayed reaction. So the night I made these, I was prepared for (and kind of looking forward to) them being green. But no go. Oh well. So I didn't think to warn Z when I put a little one in her lunch the next day.
Next thing I know, she's screeching about the green stuff in her brownies. I figured she meant little particles of squash, since the puree had little green flecks. Nope. The reaction had occurred overnight, turning parts of the brownies a vibrant mossy green! Hahaha! Too bad. If I had warned her, she might have liked that.
I tried explaining that it was a reaction where the brown ingredients turned green, like eggs turning from clear to white. No dice. So I reminded her of all the green foods she likes. "Yeah, but what color was the broccoli first, Mama? It was always green, right?" Sigh.

But these will be fanTAStic come St. Patty's Day!

Baby Loves Brownies
(No. I'm not actually feeding them to the baby. Although without the chocolate on top, I just might. Cooked honey is safe, if I recall correctly. And these spices are safe, and it's peanut butter I'm supposed to avoid, not sunflower seeds. Although there is something about no egg whites or yolks for babies or something... but I could try a flax-seed-flour egg substitute... And the squash is definitely safe!)

I used 3/4 cup of Baby's Squished Squash puree, made from an assortment of Summer squash. So if you have some available, use 6 1-ounce cubes, thawed. Or 6 ounces from jarred baby food. Sweet potato might be fun too. 
Molly's Lunch Box made the suggestion to add "a little bit of" pumpkin pie spice and "some" chocolate chips, so I had to fake it and decide on my own. She also sprinkled 1 Tbsp coconut flour over the top, but I didn't have any of that. 

The Verdict:
These were super moist. Since my squash puree was designed for Baby, it had lots of extra water in it. I had to cut these into 1" squares or they'd fall apart in my fingers, they were so moist. Fresh out of the oven, they were kind of weird and frothy, and I wasn't a fan. But the next day they were moist and spongy, and they started growing on me. Hubby too. I keep noticing another hunk missing from the pan!
Unka Seesee thought that they were too weird. But he only tried the one. Like I said, they kind of grow on you!

The edge ones weren't so green, so Little Z agreed to try a "less green brownie" again later. I had to bribe her with some Trader Joe's Chocolate Covered Joe's (like Cheerios, coated in a chocolate shell. Yum!) "But they're green, Mama." "Yes. They turned a little green. Like magic! Magic Leprechaun brownies!"

After her first few nibbles ("Yuck! Blech!") I reminded her that she normally likes all the ingredients. "You usually like eggs, right? Oh, and peanut butter. [I haven't told her I sometimes sub SunButter! I will if I ever pack it for a nut-free school event, though.] And it has cinnamon in it." "What are these, Mama? Is this chocolate?" "Yes. Chocolate chips." "Oooo YUMMMM!"
She ate roughly half of her little square, which was pretty good. She didn't end up liking the flavor, but she gave it a real chance, which was all I wanted.

But I like this idea. I might just start tossing squash or other pureed baby food into brownies and muffins and whatnot regularly. And maybe some peanut or other seed or nut butter, for added protein!

1 comment:

Go ahead! Tell me how awesome I am. Or ask a question. Whatever.

(Please note that I had to disable Anonymous comments. Too many spam comments coming through the filters.)