Not just any pie

The moral of the story was the importance of learning to work together, but there was also a more delicious take away.

When a mummy, ghost, vampire, witch and bat work together, the reward is pumpkin pie, lots of pumpkin pie.

Geoff "Chef Geoff" Ianniello visited two Victoria Elementary School classes Thursday to read the Halloween favorite "Big Pumpkin" by Erica Silverman and S.D. Schindler followed by a serving of the fall dessert.

Ianniello, the operations manager for a Network for a Healthy California, didn't whip up just any ol' pumpkin pie for teachers Tomi and Tracy Scofield's special day classes, but a dessert of his own creation.

"Boys and girls, we are now going to make pumpkin pie not in the kitchen, not in an oven, but in your mouth," Ianniello said. "This will be a strange pie, but it will be delicious."

Ianniello whipped together a healthier version of the holiday favorite that was devoid of cream and the fat from eggs. The dessert's main ingredient falls in line with the Network's Harvest of the Month fruit or vegetable, which was winter squash for October.

The lesson also comes on the heels of an outing with Ianniello where the class bought small pumpkins at the farmers market and got to taste a number of unusual produce, Tomi Scofield said.

To make the healthy treat, Ianniello used a pumpkin he already cooked and added cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger after letting the pupils smell each spice.

"This is what the witch used in the story to make her pumpkin pie," Ianniello said.

A square of the concoction on a whole-wheat graham cracker completed the dish.

Upper grader Lauren Tran, who gave the reading of "Big Pumpkin" a standing ovation, said she liked the treat and most of her classmates seemed to agree by giving two thumbs up.

"It's good," Annabelle Goins said. "I like it because it's special."

Twitter: @britneyjbarnes

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