Fall may be the quintessential season of the dinner table.  As leaves turn and the air turns crisp, we settle back into the rituals and routines that are grounded by the new school year, sports, and upcoming holidays.

The Fall harvest of apples, squash, broccoli, and Brussels sprouts is overflowing at the Farmers’ Markets. The cooler temperatures outside mean we now welcome a warm oven full of roasting vegetables or a stove topped with a simmering pot of soup.

We can think of no better way to enjoy a crisp evening than by creating a family dinner together. Skill It’s Emerald City Pasta is a surprising twist on a basil-filled summer pesto.  Instead of tender leafy greens, this dish turns delicious, nutritious broccoli into a satiny smooth pesto sauce. Spiked with lemon, garlic, and Parmesan cheese, it is a kid-tested favorite.

As always, do what you can to include the kids in the culinary process.  You can have them chop the broccoli, squeeze the lemon, and help you with running the food processor.  Older kids may be able to lend a hand to cooking the pasta and testing to make sure it’s cooked perfectly.

Once the plates are served and you find yourself around that warm and inviting dinner table, you have the perfect opportunity to slow down and connect with one another.  With busy schedules in full swing, this time around the table each night is more important than ever.

When it comes to the family dinner table, the memories we make are often more about these conversations than the food.  Our Dinner Table Conversation Starters go a bit beyond the classic, “what did you learn today?” to include silly pieces of trivia and thoughtful questions like “what makes you feel proud of yourself?”

From start to finish, from stove to plate, bringing your family around the Fall dinner table is what will warm their bellies, their hearts, and their hands.

Click here to download the Emerald City Pasta Recipe and Dinner Table Conversation Starters.