Marfigs' Munchies

Adventures in vegan eats and feats

Pretzel pesto + smoky hummus pumpkin pie {and a tour of the new house!}


Ta ra! Now that the 29 days of rice to celebrate the new house is over, I thought I’d actually share what this mystical house looks like at the end of the week when everyone’s getting ready to relax and what not. It’s still far from finished, and we have a ton of projects awaiting us, but this is the tarted up “before” version, I guess. If you’ve missed the 29 days of rice posts just click the category tag. 🙂 I’ll be sharing a super delicious and hearty pumpkin pie recipe at the end, but for now, sit back and take a tour!spectacleearthhousecollage

I’m not going to tour around the entire house, because half of it is standing empty or looking super unkempt, but these are some of my favourite spots in the new house. 🙂

The front of the house is still coming together, and some things still need to come down (weird flower wall features?), but it’s certainly very traditional with the beautiful flowers, the super uncool water feature, and the obligatory ducks and flamingos. We were going to chop down the water feature but once we discovered the tadpoles we decided to keep it a while longer until they were big enough to get out and hop about. Our tadpole obsession might be due to the fact that Man-thing and I were raised on We All Stand Together and therefore have a deep and abiding love for frogs.frontgardencollageThe sun room is one of the things that sold me on this house – it’s such a traditional porch-type thing where you can look outside without actually having to leave the precious indoors, and it’s a perfect space for breakfast or just relaxing with a book. I’m hoping our orchids aren’t too cross about being here when they were basking in the sun in our old place, but orchids are also faffy little monsters, so we’ll see! Also, I was deeply amused to find Gatsby in this bed, because we bought it over a week ago and he completely ignored it until now, and suddenly they are snuggle bunnies. I think he overheard me telling someone that I was going to give it to potential foster kittens because he was such an ungrateful cat, which would serve him right!

Anyway, you can see that I’m already using the sun room as a place to take photos because of the awesome light. LIGHT! Finally! If you’ll notice with the pie recipe below, I finally have space to do all the shiny I’ve been dying to do, like set a frakkin table and shoot movement. *glee*sunroomcollageThe garden is just awesome. It’s big and lovely and even has a wendy house! There’s an avo, fig, loquat and lemon tree as well, which makes life dandy. We’re getting some trees removed so that we can make a vegetable patch, but that’s probably not going to kick off before December. In the meanwhile, all our potted plants seem to be either thriving or dying, but we have two little avo plants that are going to be grounded as soon as we make space for them. Avos! 😀backyardLe Kitchen! ❤ Blue, big, and wonderful! We’re still looking for a kitchen table that isn’t too low down, so that’s holding us back somewhat, but in the meanwhile it’s a fabulous space to work in. Gatsby is a little monster though – he’s so curious to see what’s in the cupboards that I can’t leave them open for a split second before he comes sniffing around. We once locked in him in a bedroom cupboard overnight by accident due to his curiosity – not an experience we wish to repeat!

Anyway, all my shiny has places to hide out – in the move I discovered so many goodies that I need to use, such as cake pop moulds, random glassware, and lots and lots of mini muffin paper liners. All excuses to bake and make, nay? Anyway, I’m showing my kitchen in action, because it’s never spotless. I was just finishing up making the pretzel pesto and having a ball.

kitchencollageThe photo room! The cupboards are full of Man-thing’s toys, and it’s still a mess, but with saving up and plotting this is going to turn out to be a pretty swell room, methinks. I’m keeping my odds and ends that don’t fit in the kitchen here, like my cloths for photos, random-sized glasses and mugs, and other jazz. There’s also my growing collection of back boards and photography equipment, but nothing too wild as yet! Of course, I have to leave one shelf open for his majesty le cat, who loves bookcases with a passion to show off how much prettier and interesting he is compared to the great works of napkins and trays. In the case of the photo room I can’t not give him a space because he tends to follow me around the house and he deserves a perch of his very own ❤

shelvescollageYou can see how few cookbooks I actually have! They’re pretty pricey and the internet more than covers all my food kinks, but I would like to slowly start stockpiling them for hands-on inspiration. So many amazing bloggers and their cookbooks are on my wishlist – I just need the “adult job” to fund them all!

meowcollage1The artwork on the bottom is something I’ve had since I was a little monster. It’s made with cut out felt and other materials and influenced a lot of my perceptions of female beauty in terms of the juxtaposition between the idealistic (and obviously freezing) fairy princess and the (toasty) hoyden tramping through the snow with a heroine’s cape billowing behind her. Man-thing isn’t too wild about them so I got the green light to hang them up in the photo room! 😀 They serve as my inspiration, so I’m uber chuffed to finally have a spot for them once we start bashing nails into the wall. So much of my artwork that I’ve bought or been gifted with was stuff in a dusty old cupboard in our old place thanks to a lack of walls and consensus, so I am totally going to splash out! I’ve begged Man-thing to commission artwork from his own pals, which is more in the space marine genre, but we’ll see what comes of that. Lazy men = more wall space for more enterprising persons. :p

artcollageFor now I’m spending an increasing amount of time on Pinterest to get ideas for the house, which is scary and very much like a black hole – it never stops! I do want to give Man-thing the opportunity to put his own touches on the place, however, so I’m not going too wild yet on the decorating front. He moved from his parents to our first place, whereas I’d lived by myself for many years, so I naturally have more stuff, more paintings, and more everything. I don’t like feeling like everything is a “woman’s place” to the point where he requires a cave.

I read a super interesting article the other day though entitled “Where is my woman cave?”, which basically spoke about how it is accepted or even expected for men to have their Man-caves where they can hide out, be filthy, and generally do stuff they don’t want women seeing, whereas women are seen to have “the rest of the house”, and therefore not in need of their own private space. This drives me wild because there’s no fun sitting in the lounge by yourself carrying hobby stuff up and down in baskets and then having to pack up, or not having a room where you can close the door and the other person knows you just need a time out. The photo room at this point is a shared space that we don’t really use all that much, because now with a bigger play room our “caves” are a merged space, and since we face opposite walls it’s actually pretty awesome to have someone else in the room but still have that feeling of privacy.

Anyway, onto the recipe! 😀 I love healthy pumpkin pie, hummus, and pesto, so when put together it’s just crazy delicious, if admittedly weird at first glance. Pumpkin pie is pretty much everywhere right now, and I honestly can’t blame anyone for being knee-deep in joy this time of year because it is my ultimate favourite food, next to zucchini.

slicedtopcloseupPretzel pesto + smoky hummus pumpkin pie (serves 8):

Smoky strawberry lentil hummus:

This is just a super easy hummus to add to pretty much everything and anything in existence. I made something of an overdose of brown lentils earlier the week and this was just the way to use them up.

  • 1 cup cooked brown lentils
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 2 TBSP apple cider vinegar
  • 1/3 cup whole strawberries, measured then diced
  • 1 TBSP dried oregano
  • Big grinds of black pepper
  • 1 – 2 TBSP lemon juice


  1. Blend until smooth and store in an air-tight container in the fridge.


Easy pretzel pesto

  • 2 cups packed basil leaves, de-stemmed
  • 1 TBSP nutritional yeast
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 2 TBSP apple cider vinegar
  • 1/3 cup baked pretzels (the hard, cracker kind) – check to make sure it’s vegan-friendly if necessary!
  • 1 – 2 TBSP unsweetened applesauce
  • 3 TBSP lemon juice


  1. Blend your spinach and basil leaves until they are broken down somewhat, then add everything but the pretzels.
  2. Blend until relatively smooth, then add the pretzels and blend until they are broken down to small bits.
  3. Keep in an air-tight jar in the fridge.
  4. The pretzels will get mushy eventually if you keep them in the fridge for a day or more, so it’s always best fresh, but the pesto still retains that salty edge and cracker flavour, which is awesome.

saucycollageSavoury pumpkin pie (serves 8):

I adapted the pie from Chocolate Covered Katie’s awesome crustless pumpkin pie – I love crust-free pies and this is really healthy has been made countless times for a solid tea-time snack or dinner companion. The changes I made were for flavour but also to firm it up somewhat, since the original is a bit more custard-y in texture. We also don’t get canned pumpkin in South Africa, but I prefer fresh anyhow, and then use less non-dairy milk to compensate for any residual moisture.

  • 1/3 cup chickpea flour
  • 1/4 cup rice bran (oat bran for those of you not on a GF kick) – If you can’t find rice or GF oat bran just use fine GF oat flour plus 1 TBSP
  • 1 TBSP cornstarch
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • Big grind of black pepper
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 TBSP NuNaturals NuStevia No-Carbs Blend (or 1/3 cup sugar of choice)
  • 1 TBSP dry oregano
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 vegan egg (powdered or flax, both work fine)
  • 3/4 cup non-dairy milk
  • 2 cups steamed pumpkin, cooled and patted dry)
  • 1 dropper NuNaturals NuStevia Liquid Vanilla


  1. Preheat your oven to 200C and spray a round 10″ baking pan.
  2. Mix your dry ingredients in one bowl.
  3. Blend or thoroughly mash your steamed pumpkin, then mix together all the wet ingredients, including your vegan egg.
  4. Add wet to dry and stir thoroughly but not overly so.
  5. Bake for 40 minutes and let it cool before letting it set for at least 6 hours in the fridge.
  6. When slicing make sure you take a sharp knife around the circumference of the pie along the crust to loosen it up a bit – it can get a bit gummy.
  7. Can be served hot or cold!slicingthrough

Putting it all together:

  1. Serve your pumpkin pie with a heaped serving of pesto smeared over the top of each slice, then place a heaped TBSP serving of the smoky strawberry lentil hummus and a pretzel on top of that. Enjoy hot or cold – it’s fantastic either way.

platedearthThis pesto is WILD – I love the simplicity of it but it packs such a punch because of the pretzels – no need to add extra salt and all that other nonsense. Combined with the applesauce and nutritional yeast it’s just hands-down my new favourite pesto. I really loathe oils in my pesto, unless it’s the oil floating on top of tahini, so this is just jazzy to me.

platedprofileYummm. Man-thing came babbling to me after hoovering down his piece saying thank you in a deranged voice. He agrees with me that it’s delicious cold, but again, tastes differ. I love taking this savoury pie to work for tea-time cold, especially then with the smear of pesto and hummus to make it extra filling and indulgent.

sidepieyumLook at that crust! 😀 My crust fetish is totally sated here, because it looks deceptively crisp but is just as creamy as the actual filling part. If you want a crust then by all means blend down some pretzels until they turn into a flour and then mix with your regular pie crust ingredients.

crustypie pretzeltopSeriously – creamy! With just a few flavours all mixed together, even in the pie itself, it becomes a wonderful, tasty dish. If you truly want a big splash double up the recipe, bake in a loaf pan, slice and toast in a panini grill if you have one (or else just heat it up), and serve with mushroom gravy or something delightful, dotted with cranberries. bitepieAll this pie business is making me think of the holidays ahead. I already started planning for them in June, but I’m really considering making this in the loaf pan as suggested above for Christmas day, because it’s pure indulgence but absolutely healthy at the same time. 😀

Are you also insane and plotting for the impending holidays?

What do you use for inspiration to decorate your home? {link me to your Pinterest boards!}

Do you have a personal lair or space in your home for your own style or hobbies?


Author: Marfigs

Ahoy, I’m Margaux! History teacher and freelance editor; wench to my Man-thing; volunteer at a cat shelter; and handmaiden to our kitsy cats, Gatsby, Freyja and Atlas. This blog is dedicated to vegan food, occasionally overthrown by pictures of foster kittens and other fluffy creatures. I love sharing ideas and recipes, so don't be shy: stop by and say hi!

12 thoughts on “Pretzel pesto + smoky hummus pumpkin pie {and a tour of the new house!}

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  4. What a creative recipe! Gatsby is pretty 🙂


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  6. I love making a whole bunch of separate individual items and then pairing them altogether! This looks awesome!


    • Thank you! And yes, it is the best because you can do so much with the basics, like use the hummus in cinnamon rolls and the pesto on top, make grilled sandwiches, lasagna….gah, so hungry now!


  7. Your new home is Lovely! Thanks for sharing. The pumpkin pie looks delish! And Gatsby is adorable. ❤


    • Thank you – there’s still so much to do, but one step (and pay check :p) at a time! Also, Gatsby is a ninja cat in disguise – adorable one moment, terror with claws the next. Luckily his cuteness gets him out of trouble 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  8. LOVE the Gatsby pics. And the colourful stuff in your blue kitchen.


    • 😀 He’s everywhere I go, so I always take a few photos of him along with the food or whatever 😉

      I can’t wait to make the kitchen even *more* colourful somehow – going in there puts me in such a great mood.


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