I made a delicious stew the other day with pumpkin, kale, Great Northern beans, and chicken sausage.
It’s a bowl full of comfort and goodness.
Head over to my blog’s new home for the recipe.
I have blogged this delicious spread before, but I have decided it deserves its own post. After all, I’ve made it three times now, and everyone that has tasted it has raved about it … and I keep missing it when it’s gone and having to make more.
I hope you will zip over to my new site for the recipe … and while you are there, make sure to enter your email address in the right sidebar and click the “Get Recipes by Email” button. Eventually I won’t be posting over here anymore and I would really really hate to lose you …
I’ve been dreaming of this granola for weeks it seems … dying to make it … looking for pumpkin seeds at the store. I thought about toasting up some out of one of these little pumpkins I have here, but I really wanted those lovely little crunchy green ones that you can get, not the big seeds you pull out of your pumpkin and roast.
I knew I saw some at the grocery store, but every time I went back, they were gone … FINALLY, this morning, I found some! Granola time, baby!
So I made this lovely granola with maple syrup and pumpkin puree, pumpkin spices, honey, dried cranberries and lots of fun seeds and nuts.
But I’m sorry to say, you’re not going to find the recipe for this delicious holiday granola here …
I’ve decided it’s time for my blog to have its own space … I think we’ve outgrown the capabilities of Free WordPress and we need to move on … sooo I moved everything over to www.SumptuousSpoonfuls.com … yes, all of it, all the recipes, all your comments, everything! Tada! Isn’t that magic?
Please go over there to find the recipe for this granola (and ALL of my others!) and while you are there, I would really love it if you would click the link to follow me there. If I am can figure out a way to redirect all of you lovely people who already follow my blog, I will … and for a little while, I will post little ticklers here to remind you I’m hanging out over there now.
So what are you waiting for? Come hang out with me in my new home and get the recipe for this lovely Maple Spice Pumpkin Cranberry Granola!
If you bake it in a pie pan, it’s a pie, right?
I am naming this a Pumpkin Apricot Oatmeal Pie to distinguish it from the mushy stuff you usually think of as oatmeal. Don’t get me wrong: I love a hot steamy bowl of oatmeal, but this definitely doesn’t have that soft mushy texture of stove top oatmeal. But then again, it’s not totally soft, moist and dense like a pumpkin pie either, and it has no crust. It’s not cakey either. I think most people would call it baked oatmeal, but really, it’s a cross between baked oatmeal and pumpkin pie. It is packed with dried fruit and has a slightly chewy texture to it. You could eat it for breakfast (because it’s totally healthy and packed full of fiber and protein and vitamins and other good things), or you could add ice cream and a little drizzle of caramel and call it dessert.
This lovely “pie” was inspired by my sweet friend Ann at The Fountain Avenue Kitchen, who made Pumpkin Baked Oatmeal the other day. She always soaks her oatmeal for several hours before she bakes it. I keep meaning to try that method, wondering if it would change the texture, but I never seem to think ahead enough to do it. Maybe next time?
Pumpkin Apricot Oatmeal Pie
- 1/4 cup golden raisins
- 2 Tablespoons rum (optional)
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
- 1 1/2 cups old fashioned oats
- 3 Tablespoons maple syrup
- 2 Tablespoons Stevia in the Raw or brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
- 1 teaspoon real vanilla extract
- 1 cup lowfat milk
- 2 Tablespoons Amaretto (optional)
- 1 egg + 1 egg white
- 1 ripe banana, smashed (or grated apple would be wonderful too … )
- 1 1/2 Tablespoons melted butter
- 1/4 cup dried apricots, chopped into bits
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- For the top: 1/3 cup pecans + a Tablespoon or two of raw turbinado sugar
- Soak the raisins in the rum for at least 15 minutes to get them nice and plump. If you don’t want to include the alcohol, you can use water with a little vanilla and/or rum extract to plump the raisins.
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
- Mix all the other ingredients (except for the topping) in a mixing bowl until everything is well mixed. Add the rum-soaked raisins (with any residual rum).
- Spray a large pie pan with cooking spray and pour the pumpkin oatmeal mixture into it, spreading it evenly with a rubber spatula.
- Sprinkle the top of the pie with pecans and raw sugar. Bake at 375 for about 40 minutes or until the pie is set and golden brown on top.
To serve, you can cut in wedges and eat it warm, with no topping, or for a fancier dessert oatmeal pie, you can top it with light vanilla ice cream (or vanilla yogurt for an even healthier option!) and drizzle with a little warm caramel sauce. The warm oatmeal pie with the toasted pecans on top and cold ice cream melting into it is really a wonderful contrast, but most of the time I ate it just plain, no topping, because it’s quite nice just like that, with a cup of hot chai.
This recipe was shared at Fit & Fabulous Friday, Share it Saturday, Scrumptious Sunday, Weekend Potluck, Melt in your Mouth Monday, Totally Tasty Tuesday, Tuesday Talent Show, Thursday’s Treasures and Everyday Mom’s Meals.
My daughter, her friend and I went up to my friend’s lake house this weekend for a “girls” weekend. I wanted to bring along some fun “girly” things to eat, so I made up some chocolate mascarpone spread so we could make chocolate strawberry bruschetta, and while I was at it, I made a pumpkin maple spread too. But then I needed something to put the pumpkin spread on, so, despite the fact that it was a crazy busy day, on a total whim I started up some dough in my bread machine to make pumpkin cinnamon swirl bread. I wasn’t really sure that I would be home long enough on Saturday to bake it before we left, but somehow I managed it. And I was SO glad I did. This bread, with the pumpkin mascarpone spread is pure bliss to eat. You can just close your eyes and lose yourself in the lovely taste of it. My friend said she felt like she could just keep eating it till she exploded. I told her I wasn’t going to share that on my blog, but now here I am sharing it LOL. The young teenage girls loved it too.
We had such a fun weekend. We went for a LONG walk along the lake, then we had tea and hot chocolate and a lovely dinner … I made the salad, my daughter’s friend made cajun chicken pasta, my friend made green beans and we had rotisserie chicken and chicken sausages too, then we listened to funky music and my friend and I had wine and chatted while the girls danced their hearts out in the living room.
My friend who has three boys and has rarely (if ever?) had a girls weekend, wanted to take some of the bread home to her boys. I couldn’t let her have it ALL (my daughter wanted some!), but I did give her the smaller loaf to take home … so the boys could try it too. I think she loved the girls weekend, but I could also tell she felt a little lost without her boys. I was craving some male energy too. Girls’ weekends are great, but … well, we need our boys, too. However, I do have to tell you my daughter and I were awfully tempted to buy this lakefront house we saw, move to the lake and leave our “city” life behind.
Yeah, that’s not going to happen. It is tempting, though …
Pumpkin Cinnamon Swirl Bread
- 1 package (1 tablespoon) active dry yeast
- 3/4 cup milk
- 1 large egg
- 3/4 cup puréed pumpkin
- 1 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 2 1/4 cups bread flour
- 1 1/4 cups unbleached white whole wheat flour
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cardamom
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- To make the swirl: Cooking spray (or melted butter) + cinnamon sugar
- Dump all the ingredients except for the “Swirl” ingredients into your bread machine and set it on the dough setting.
- When the dough is ready, roll it out into a rectangle, spray with cooking spray, then sprinkle with cinnamon sugar and roll it up. (I rolled it up lengthwise, and the dough was long enough to make one loaf pan plus a smaller loaf.)
- Spray your loaf pans with cooking spray and carefully transfer the dough into them, tucking under the ends to form a nice loaf shape. Spray the loaves with cooking spray, cover with a clean towel and set in a warm place to rise.
- When the dough has risen to a big, puffy state (roughly double the size), bake at 375 F. for about 30 minutes or until the loaves are a deep golden brown on top and the loaves sound hollow inside when you thump them.
- Let the bread sit for about 5 – 10 minutes, then slice and serve with Pumpkin Maple Mascarpone Cream.
Pumpkin Maple Mascarpone Cream
- 3 oz. light cream cheese
- 1/4 cup mascarpone cheese
- 1/4 cup pumpkin puree
- 1 1/2 Tablespoons maple syrup
- 3/4 – 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice (if you don’t have any on hand, here’s a quick recipe to make your own)
- 1/2 teaspoon real vanilla extract
Let the cream cheese warm up a bit at room temperature, then in a small mixing bowl, mix the cream cheese with the rest of the ingredients until it’s all smooth and very well mixed. You can use a spoon or a mixer does the job quickly and gets the spread all nice and fluffy. Store in an airtight container in the fridge.
This recipe was shared at Scrumptious Sunday, Melt in your Mouth Monday, Totally Tasty Tuesday, Tuesday Talent Show, Tasty Tuesday, Wonderful Food Wednesday, Newlyweds Recipe Linky, Show & Share Wednesday, Cast Party Wednesday , Full Plate Thursday and All my Bloggy Friends.
This is a Secret Recipe Club post. If you haven’t heard of the Secret Recipe Club, it’s made up of a group of food bloggers. Each month every blogger in the club is “assigned” another participating food blogger to make a recipe from. You choose any recipe from the blog you are assigned, make or bake it, and blog about it, then everyone in your group posts their “secret recipes” on the same date and time. It’s really quite fun.
This month I was assigned Art from my Table. I was immediately intrigued by the name of the blog and excited to dig into Chellie’s recipes. She has such a variety of things to choose from! It took me a while to figure out what to make, but once I saw these little tarts, I was totally hooked.
I don’t make pastries or pies very often … wait, no, that’s not true … I don’t make pies or pastries AT ALL. Unless my dad is around to make the crust for me. I have a huge crust-phobia. But pumpkin, sage, and goat cheese? In a cute little bite? Seriously. That was totally something I had to try. And I really love that I can freeze the dough (and filling) for later, so I don’t have to make them all at once. I have instant impressive appetizers just waiting in my freezer! Next time I will crimp the edges better, though, because most of them opened up like an oyster shell peeking out at you. The crust turned out nice and flaky and tender, though … what was I so afraid of?
Pumpkin & Goat Cheese Mini-Pies
Recipe from Art from my Table
For the Dough:
- 1 cup of flour
- 1 cup of white whole wheat flour
- 1 1/3 stick of unsalted butter
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp garlic powder (optional)
- 1 egg beaten
- 3 tbs heavy cream or yogurt (more if needed … I used plain lowfat yogurt)
- Place flour, salt and butter in a big bowl. Work with your fingertips or with a pastry blender ‘til the mixture resembles coarse meal. You want to keep some visible pieces of butter
- Beat together egg and 3 tbsp of cream. Pour the mixture into the dry ingredients.
- Using your fingertips, mix them smoothly by making circular movements. Don’t knead the dough.
- Keep mixing. The dough should come together quickly and if it doesn’t happen, add one more tablespoon of yogurt. (I did.) It was still crumbly, though, but it did form okay into a ball.
- Don’t worry about spots, visible pieces of butter and stripes of yogurt; they are a good sign. Press to form a ball, cover and keep in the fridge for at least 15 minutes.
Note: You can keep this dough in the freezer for about a month. Just place it in the fridge and let it defrost overnight before using.
For the filling:
- 1 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
- 1/2 small onion chopped
- 1 – 2 cloves garlic
- 1 tbs olive oil
- 1/2 tbs fresh sage chopped
- 1/8 tsp nutmeg
- Salt and fresh ground black pepper
- 4 oz goat cheese
How to assemble the little pies:
- Preheat oven to 350F˚.
- Place dough in a floured surface and roll it out into a 1/8 inch thin layer. Using a 4 inch round cookie cutter cut the dough into circles. Place the pumpkin filling in the center of the circle, crumble or place a bit of cheese on top of the pumpkin filling and fold the dough over into a semicircle.
- Crimp down the edges and arrange in a baking sheet. Keep doing the same process until the dough is gone (or till you get tired of making them and then just freeze the rest of the dough and filling in separate containers for another time). It should make about 24 little pies.
- Brush with egg wash, sprinkle with sesame and poppy seeds, and bake at 350 for about 30 minutes or until golden in color.
I had the urge to make beer cheese soup the other day … and there was just a bit of bacon sitting there needing to be used, and then while retrieving the garlic, I ran across some mushrooms … so they hopped in the soup too. And then I stumbled across some pumpkin puree in the freezer, and because it was so good in the macaroni and cheese, I threw in some pumpkin puree too. And that’s how this soup happened.
Bacon Mushroom Beer Cheese Soup
Makes 2-4 bowls of soup, depending on how big your bowls are.
- 2 slices of uncooked bacon
- 3/4 cup chopped mushrooms
- 1/3 cup finely chopped red onion
- 2 -3 cloves of garlic
- 1/4 cup flour
- 3 cups of 1 % milk
- 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
- 1 loose cup of shredded extra sharp cheddar cheese (gently place the cheese in the cup so it fluffs up–don’t pack it in)
- 1/2 loose cup of shredded gouda cheese (again, very loosely placed in the cup)
- 1 Tablespoon shredded gruyere cheese
- 1 1/2 – 2 teaspoons of Red Robin Seasoning (if you don’t have any, here’s a recipe … or use your favorite seasoned salt)
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- Freshly ground pepper to taste
- 1/4 cup brown ale (or your favorite brew–I used the Leinenkugel Fireside Nut Brown Ale)
- For garnish: crumbled bits of bacon, shredded sharp cheddar cheese, and fresh parsley leaves
- In a saucepan (I mean the pan you’re going to cook the soup in), fry the bacon until it’s crisp. Remove the bacon from the pan and crumble it up into little bits. Set it aside for now.
- Pour some of the excess fat from the pan, then add the onions, garlic, and mushrooms. Over medium-high heat, sautee them in the bacon fat until the onions are soft and translucent and the mushrooms are limp.
- Add the flour to the pan and stir, coating all your little shrooms and onions and garlic bits in flour.
- Add the milk and cook over medium heat, stirring often, for about 5 – 10 minutes or so or until the mixture thickens.
- Add the pumpkin puree, shredded cheeses, most of the bacon bits (reserving a few for garnish), and the seasonings and cook for a few minutes longer until the cheese melts.
- Just before serving, stir in the beer. The soup will froth up for a moment, but then it will calm down again, just in time to serve it.
- Pour into bowls and top with shredded cheese, the reserved bacon bits, and fresh parsley leaves. Some people like to put popcorn on their beer cheese soup. That’s fun too.
This would go great with hot, crusty, fresh baked bread, or even better, in a bread bowl. I didn’t have any of that, though …
Here’s a little something to keep you going through your power shopping trip this Black Friday.
Protein Power Pumpkin Banana Smoothie
- 1 1/2 cups cold milk (can use regular, soy or almond milk)
- 1/2 cup partly frozen pumpkin puree (it’s hard to measure frozen pumpkin, so thaw it partially in the microwave … or just add a hunk of frozen)
- 2 teaspoons pumpkin spice syrup (use store-bought or make your own: recipe here)
- 1/2 of a frozen banana
- 1 scoop of vanilla protein powder
Put all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. This makes enough for two smoothies, but I drank it all myself.
This is a warm, sweet, spicy bowl of autumn comfort.
My friend Russ made a wish the other day … he was wishing for a Pumpkin Raisin Oatmeal. Well, I can’t let a wish like that go by without granting it! (Did you know I have wish-granting powers? Yes, I am a virtual food fairy ♥)
This makes an Ann-size portion (if you know me, you know that I am small and I eat very small portions!), but I used easy proportions so you can easily scale it up to your own portion size — or to make oatmeal for a crowd! Just use equal portions of oatmeal, water, milk, and pumpkin puree, then add your spices and mix-ins to taste
This pumpkin-infused oatmeal goes oh so well with a cup of Pumpkin Spice Chai Latte.
Pumpkin Spice Oatmeal
- 1/4 cup quick cooking oats
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/4 cup milk (Any kind. I used 1%, but soy, almond or coconut milk would work fine too.)
- 1/4 cup pumpkin puree
- 1/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice (if you don’t have any, here’s a recipe)
- 1/2 teaspoon maple syrup
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
- dash of salt
- brown sugar (or your choice of sweetener), to taste
Options for Mix-ins:
- A teaspoon of peanut butter or almond butter (or maybe Nutella?)
- Sliced almonds, chopped walnuts or pecans — I highly recommend toasting your nuts before adding them. They are SO much better when toasted!
- Raisins, dried cranberries, chopped dates or chopped, dried apricots
- Chopped apple
- Chocolate or white chocolate chips?
- Put all ingredients in a bowl except for the brown sugar and stir to mix. (If you are using chopped apples as a mix-in and you want them cooked, you may want to add them at the beginning. Cooking time will be a little longer if you include apples.)
- Microwave on high for about 2 minutes or until the oatmeal is done to your liking.
- Sweeten to taste and add your choice of mix-ins. I added a small spoonful of peanut butter and sliced almonds this morning.
The memory of the Amaretto Pumpkin Bread Pudding I made a while ago is still haunting me, so I just couldn’t help but carry those luscious flavors over into my pumpkin roll.
I have been wanting to make a pumpkin roll forever, it seems. I’ve been reading about how to do it, and enviously watching other food bloggers write about their lovely pumpkin rolls …
What was holding me back? I didn’t have the right pan. So last weekend I went and bought one. $8.99 at Target. Really? All this time I was just $9 from making pumpkin rolls and chocolate rolls and and and … well you can just imagine all the fun I will have with this thing now! I feel so liberated, like a whole new world has opened up before me …
It’s the little things in life, I tell you.
Light and Fluffy Maple Amaretto Pumpkin Roll
The cake part of this recipe is roughly adapted from Libby’s Pumpkin Roll. The filling is my own creation.
For the cake:
- powdered sugar (to sprinkle on towel)
- 3 large eggs
- 1/2 cup + 2 T. brown sugar
- 2 T. Amaretto
- 2/3 cup pumpkin puree
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice (recipe here)
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 (8 ounce) package light cream cheese, softened
- 1/4 cup pumpkin
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 tablespoons powdered sugar
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- 1/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- 1 cup maple amaretto whipped cream (recipe below … or if you prefer, use purchased whipped cream and add a little more pumpkin pie spice to the filling)
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Spray a 15 x 10-inch jelly-roll pan with cooking spray; line with wax paper, then spray the waxed paper liberally with cooking spray.
- Sprinkle a large clean towel with powdered sugar. It’s apparently important what kind of towel you use–find one that does not have many “fuzzies” on it. I used a flour sack-type kitchen towel.
- Beat eggs and sugar in large mixer bowl until thick. Beat in pumpkin.
- Add the flours, baking powder, baking soda, spice, amaretto and salt and stir till the batter is smooth.
- Spread evenly into prepared pan.
- BAKE for 13 to 15 minutes or until top of cake springs back when touched.
- Immediately loosen and turn cake onto the prepared towel. Carefully peel off waxed paper.
- While the cake is still hot, roll up the cake and towel together. I rolled it lengthwise, but I think the recipe said to roll it up the other way. Ooops! You would certainly get more of a swirl if you roll it the other way, but then the portions would be a lot larger. I think it’s kind of nice to have a smaller portion size.
- Let the cake cool completely, all wrapped up in its own little blanket.
- While the cake is cooling, prepare the filling. Beat all the filling ingredients except the maple amaretto whipped cream with a mixer in a medium bowl until smooth and fluffy. Fold in the whipped cream.
- Set out a piece of plastic wrap cut big enough to wrap the roll in.
- Carefully unroll cake, remove the towel and set the cake on the plastic wrap.
- Spread the cream cheese filling over cake.
- Reroll the cake the same way it was rolled up in the towel. The cake will “remember” the way it was rolled while it was cooling.
- Wrap your beautiful roll in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least one hour–or freeze.
I’m freezing my pumpkin roll so I can take it to Thanksgiving Dinner. I’ve heard then you just take it out of the freezer about an hour before you want to serve it. From what I have read, it is also easier to slice while it’s still frozen–I found it a little hard to saw through when it was frozen solid, so I think you should let it thaw part-way, then cut it.
I’m trying a piece today for breakfast … you know, just to make sure it’s not poison. ;) You might notice I couldn’t quite wait till it thawed out.
Maple Amaretto Whipped Cream
- 1 cup of whipping cream
- 1/8 c. maple syrup
- 1/8 t. pumpkin pie seasoning
- 2 t. amaretto
Holy macaroni is this good! I don’t know what it is about putting a little pumpkin puree in the cheese sauce, but it adds a level of earthy richness to the creamy macaroni and cheese that is just sublime. It’s the ultimate comfort food.
I am totally in love with this dish. We are talkin’ head over heels here. It’s satisfying. It’s healthy. It’s beautiful. What more does a girl need?
Well, okay, maybe a little piece of chocolate … and a glass of wine … and … um … a little more? Yes, please.
Baked Pumpkin Macaroni & Cheese with Spinach and Tomato
Adapted from Brokeass Gourmet
- 2 c. dry elbow macaroni, penne, shells or other small pasta shape (I used Ronzoni SmartTaste Penne with Calcium, Vitamin D and Fiber)
- 2 T. finely chopped onion
- 1 1/2 tbsp unsalted butter
- 2 tbsp all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup milk (any kind … I used 2%)
- 1/2 cup unsweetened pumpkin puree (I used 1/2 cup because that’s all I had left of the pumpkin I baked … her recipe called for 3/4 cup pumpkin.)
- 1 cup frozen spinach, thawed
- 1/2 – 3/4 cup plus 1/4 cup shredded cheese (I used a mix of swiss & asiago with a little mixed mexican on top for color … she used aged cheddar. Experiment with your favorite cheese(s)!)
- A dash of nutmeg
- Salt (or Red Robin Seasoning!) and pepper to taste
- A few tablespoons of breadcrumbs
- 1 medium sized tomato, diced
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Spray a small casserole dish or individual ramekins/oven proof bowls with cooking spray.
- Cook macaroni in salted boiling water according to package directions.
- While macaroni cooks, melt the butter in a medium pot over medium heat. Add the onions and sautee.
- As soon as it begins to brown, add the flour and whisk until you have a very sticky dough.
- Slowly whisk in the milk to form a creamy white sauce. (Honestly I got a phone call while I was making the sauce and I just used a spoon and stirred … and it turned out just fine.)
- Continue whisking (or stirring!) as you add the pumpkin and 1/2 cup of the shredded cheese. You should have a very creamy sauce. Season with nutmeg, Red Robin Seasoning (or salt) and pepper.
- Microwave the spinach to thaw, then press out the extra liquid using a clean towel so the spinach is not so wet. Mix the spinach into the cheese sauce.
- Drain the pasta and return it to its pot. Use a rubber spatula to scrape all of the sauce over the pasta and stir to coat the pasta evenly.
- Scrape the sauced pasta into the prepared casserole or ramekins Make sure not to miss any of that glorious sauce!
- Sprinkle with breadcrumbs, then top with the reserved cheese. Then just before you pop it in the oven, scatter those lovely tomatoes over the top.
- Bake for 18-22 minutes or until the cheese is very bubbly and lightly browned on top. Serve hot.
I could seriously not wait to eat this. Usually I would have paused for a photo shoot before digging in. It took all my willpower to force myself to wait a minute while I quickly snapped a few shots. I didn’t bother with the outdoor shoot that I usually do. Can you see my computers and my phone in the background there? Yeah, I didn’t stop to clean the clutter off the table either.
an almost wordless Wednesday post …
Pumpkin Pie Chai Tea Bread
I named this bread pumpkin pie chai tea bread because it has a very moist, dense texture almost like pumpkin pie, with the spices of chai tea and a hint of orange. A cup of Pumpkin Spice Chai Tea Latte would be just perfect with this tasty bread.
Adapted from Health Magazine
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup whole-wheat flour
- 2/3 cup brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 t. pumpkin pie spice
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cardamom
- 1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
- 2 eggs
- 1 egg white
- 1/4 cup 1% reduced fat milk
- 1/4 cup orange juice
- 1/3 cup canola oil
- 1 cup pumpkin purée
- 2 tablespoons chopped cinnamon roasted almonds
- 1 tablespoon raw (turbinado) sugar
- Preheat oven to 350°. Coat a 9- x 5-inch loaf pan with cooking spray.
- Combine all dry ingredients (through allspice) in a large bowl.
- Whisk eggs, egg white, milk, juice, oil, and pumpkin in a medium bowl until thoroughly blended.
- Add wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, stirring until just blended. Spread batter into the prepared pan. Sprinkle almonds and raw sugar on top.
- Bake the bread until lightly browned and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean (60 to 65 minutes). Cool in the pan for 10 minutes before cutting, then take out of the pan and allow to cool further on a baking rack.
I know it might seem a little odd to be making ice cream in the fall when the weather is starting to get chilly, but think about it. This is the time of year when people are baking pies and apple crisp and don’t you always want a scoop of ice cream on top? Why use plain old vanilla ice cream when you can have something much more exciting?
Brandied Pumpkin Maple Spice Ice Cream
I think next time I make this, I will use some whipping cream in place of the fat free half & half to get a more creamy texture. The flavor was amazing, the texture could have been a bit creamier.
- 2 c. fat-free half & half
- 1 c. buttermilk
- 1/4 c. brown sugar
- Several pieces of candied ginger (I think I used 5 pieces.)
- 1 egg, beaten
- 1 c. of cooked pumpkin or butternut squash puree
- 2 t. vanilla
- 1/4 t. nutmeg
- 1/4 t. cinnamon
- 1/4 t. cardamom
- 1/8 c. maple syrup
- 1/4 c. brandy … (Optional, but if you leave out the alcohol, the ice cream will get much harder in the freezer. The alcohol keeps it from freezing too hard.)
- In a medium saucepan, mix half & half, buttermilk & brown sugar. Add the candied ginger. Heat, stirring frequently, until small bubbles form at the edge of the pan.
- In a separate bowl, beat the egg with a whisk or mixer until frothy.
- Slowly drizzle a stream of the hot cream mixture (about 1 cup of it) into the egg, whisking or beating constantly.
- Gradually add the egg mixture back into the remaining hot cream mixture in the saucepan, whisking as you go.
- Cook over medium-low heat, stirring frequently, until mixture thickens slightly and is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon–roughly 5 minutes.
- Remove from heat, transfer into a glass jar and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled–at least 2 hours.
- Meanwhile, stir together the pumpkin or butternut squash in a bowl with the spices, vanilla, maple syrup and the brandy till smooth. If there are any chunks in the squash, run it through a blender, food processor, or handi chopper to get a smooth mixture.
- Once the cream mixture is cool, pull it out of the fridge and strain out and discard the candied ginger chunks.
- Mix together the pureed pumpkin mixture with the cooled cream mixture till they are well blended.
- Freeze in your ice cream maker till good and frozen. With my little Cuisinart ice cream maker, it takes about 20 minutes.
Use this ice cream atop your favorite pie or autumn dessert … or by itself, drizzled with a little maple syrup, caramel sauce or sprinkled with a bit of chopped candied ginger. But today I’m enjoying my ice cream “plain”, just like this and it’s delicious … it has enough depth of flavor to be an elegant dessert all by itself.
I got in a fight with my teenage son this afternoon … it was, as usual, a very emotionally charged exchange. We were both livid by the time we left the house. I was driving him to his dad’s place and yes, I was angry, but after a moment, I forced myself to calm down and breathe so I could drive safely. Still, I was fighting back the tears of rage.
I was just crossing through an intersection where the light was green on a country road that crosses the edge of the city when a lady in a silver car turned right in front of me, just as I was nearing the edge of the intersection. Perhaps she didn’t see my little gray car coming; perhaps she wasn’t paying attention. I slammed on the brakes and managed to stop without hitting her. There wasn’t anywhere else for me to go, no other lane to swerve into. But in that moment I saw both of our lives flash before my eyes. I thought to myself how miniscule our argument really was, in the scheme of things. Apparently my son had the same thought because he looked at me and said, “that really puts things in perspective, doesn’t it?”
Now don’t get me wrong, we needed to fight today. There were things I needed to say to him, and he needed to get out some of the rage he was holding inside. But we also needed to remember how precious and fragile our connections to each other are. They could be broken … gone … in an instant. So often in an argument, we say hurtful things and we forget.
This stranger, in a moment of carelessness, sent us a powerful reminder.
Thick & Hearty Curried Pumpkin Black Bean Soup
Roughly adapted from Smitten Kitchen
- 3-5 garlic cloves, peeled
- 1/2 large onion, peeled
- 2 t. olive oil
- 2 t. curry powder
- 1/2 t. smoked paprika
- 1 t. cumin
- 1/4 c. chardonnay or other dry white wine — although I think a dry red might work even better
- 2 c. black beans
- 1/2 quart canned tomatoes with juices
- 1 c. pumpkin puree
- 1 c. beef or vegetable broth
- Red Robin Seasoning or your favorite seasoned salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 – 1/2 t. cayenne seasoning (or more to taste)
- Feta cheese crumbles and/or roasted pumpkin seeds (pepitas) and a few whole black beans for garnish
- Whirl the onion and garlic in a handi chopper or food processor till they are in tiny chunks (or chop into small bits with your knife).
- Over medium high heat, sautee the chopped onion and garlic with the cumin, curry, and smoked paprika in the olive oil until the onion and garlic is soft. It should be sort of a paste of onion and spices.
- Add the wine and cook for a few minutes until most of the wine has evaporated.
- Whir the beans and tomatoes briefly in the handi chopper or food processor (do them separately if your device won’t hold them all at once!) or mash with a potato masher to break down the beans and tomatoes to a sort of rough puree.
- Add the beans, tomatoes, pumpkin and broth to the pan. Season to taste with Red Robin Seasoning, freshly ground pepper, and cayenne.
- Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for about 20 – 30 minutes or until the flavors have all mixed well.
- Serve hot with feta cheese crumbles and a few whole black beans and/or pumpkin seeds for garnish.
I met a new friend the other day. Her name is Kate and she is a healthy foodie that likes to cook with protein powder. She posted this pumpkin protein cake recipe and I was intrigued. I do not normally cook with protein powder, but I know it’s important when you’re working out to get enough protein, and being someone who works out a lot, yet doesn’t eat much meat, I thought this was certainly worth a try. It sounds like an awesome treat to have after a good workout, doesn’t it?
I added just one little thing: some toffee chips. It just seemed like the thing to add. I know it pulls down the nutritional value, but you know what? If it tempts me to eat it, that is a good thing, right? I didn’t add toooo many …
I like to mix a little bad in with the good. Life is all about balance, my friends.
You wouldn’t believe how good this cake smelled while it was baking …
Pumpkin Toffee Oat Cake +
The + is for the extra protein and fiber! … Recipe from Kate at Weights and Cakes.
When I first tasted this cake, I thought it needed more sweetness, but now the not-so-sugary-taste is kind of growing on me. So if you like your cake really sweet, you may want to add a little extra sugar or maybe stir the “toppings” into the batter and add a bit of frosting?
- 1/4 C Xylitol Brown Sugar Blend or light brown sugar (I used brown sugar)
- 2 oz. applesauce – (her recipe called for baby food applesauce, but I used my own homemade applesauce)
- 1 ½ tsp. pumpkin pie spice
- 1/2 tsp. baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. baking soda
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 2 large egg whites
- 1/2 of a 15 oz. can of raw pumpkin or 3/4 c. pumpkin puree
- 1 c. oat flour – (put rolled oats in a blender or food processor!)
- 1 scoop vanilla whey protein powder
- 1/4 cup almond milk or milk
- 1/4 c. chopped walnuts
- 1/4 c. chocolate-covered toffee chips
- Preheat the oven to 350.
- Spray a 9×9 square baking dish with non-stick spray.
- Combine all ingredients (except the topping ingredients) in a medium bowl.
- Spread batter into the baking dish. Sprinkle with the toffee chips and nuts.
- Bake for 30 min. Cut into squares. Enjoy!
with low-fat, non-dairy, and low-sugar options
I have some friends from India that I met in California. Many years ago, they introduced me to chai tea–a sweet, milky drink spiced with exotic Indian spices–and it has since become a necessity in my morning routine. Some people can’t start their day without coffee–I can’t start my day without chai. I keep 4 to 5 different varieties of chai tea bags on hand at all times, and I take an assortment of them with me when I travel. As long as I can find some hot water and milk in the morning, I am set. My very favorite chai tea bags are:
- Tazo Organic Chai: it has a peppery bite to it. This is what I usually start with.
- Stash Premium Double Spice Chai Black Tea: Intense with spices. I like that.
- Twinings French Vanilla Chai: A mellow, sweet, vanilla tasting chai.
- Celestial Seasonings Decaf Sweet Coconut Chai: the coconut with the chai is heavenly.
So no, you don’t have to go to a coffee shop to get a great chai latte. Save yourself a lot of money and make your own at home. You can easily do this as a Pumpkin Espresso Latte by skipping the tea bags and adding a couple shots of espresso at the end. I’ll give you a simplified microwave version too … just in case you’re in a hurry. I always seem to be in a hurry …
Pumpkin Spice Chai Latte
Highly adapted from the kitchn’s recipe for Pumpkin Spice Latte (the coffee-inated kind).
makes 1-2 servings
- 2 cups milk (you can use lowfat, nonfat or soy/almond/coconut milk–whatever you like! If you want to cut calories even further, you can use half skim milk/half water)
- 3 teaspoons of Pumpkin Spice Syrup (recipe below)
- 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- Sugar or sweetener to taste
- 2 chai tea bags (or for a less-spiced drink, use black, white or green tea bags)
- In a saucepan combine milk, pumpkin spice syrup and sugar (or sugar substitute).
- Set the tea bags in the liquid and cook on medium heat, stirring, until steaming.
- Remove from heat, stir in the vanilla and pumpkin pie spice, then remove the tea bags.
- Transfer to a blender and process for 15 seconds until foamy. If you don’t have a blender, don’t worry about it – just whisk the mixture really well with a wire whisk.
- Pour into a large mug or two mugs.
Quickie microwave directions: Fill your mug with milk (or half milk/half water, which is what I usually do). Microwave for 2 – 3 minutes or until it’s as hot as you like your tea. Add a chai tea bag, then add 2 t. pumpkin spice syrup, 1/2 t. vanilla, and sweeten to taste with your choice of sweetener. Let steep for a few minutes. Stir with a spoon to mix–or if you want that frothy latte effect, take out the tea bag and whir it briefly with a hand blender.
Optional: Top with whipped cream and sprinkle with pumpkin pie spice, nutmeg, or cinnamon–or for a really decadent treat, drizzle the top of the whipped cream with a little salted caramel sauce. I just sprinkled mine with a little nutmeg.
Pumpkin Spice Syrup
Adapted from Annie’s Eats
- 1½ cups water
- 1½ cups sugar (I substituted half of the sugar with stevia so I used: 3/4 c. sugar + 18 packets of stevia)
- 4 cinnamon sticks
- 1 tsp. ground nutmeg
- ½ tsp. ground ginger (or put a little nub of peeled fresh ginger root in the water as it’s cooking)
- 4 whole cloves
- 2 tsp. ginger sugar (this is the sugar that falls down off the ginger when you are making candied ginger–if you don’t have any ginger sugar, you can skip this. It just adds a little extra zip to the syrup.)
- 3 tbsp. pumpkin puree
- Combine the water and sugar in a medium saucepan and heat over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until the sugar has completely dissolved.
- Toss in the cinnamon sticks and cloves, then whisk in the remaining spices and the pumpkin puree.
- Continue to cook for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently, without letting the mixture come to a boil. If you screw up and it does accidentally come to a boil, I don’t think it’s that big of a deal — mine did and the syrup tasted fine!
- Remove from the heat and allow to cool for 10-15 minutes.
- Strain the syrup through a fine mesh strainer or cheesecloth and funnel into a bottle or jar.
- Store in the refrigerator.
I have always wanted to make one of those funky flat focaccia breads with the tomatoes baked right into the top. So today I just did.
It is lovely to have a wedge of this with your soup at lunchtime (like I did today). And you can make a killer turkey sandwich on focaccia like this (um, yeah, that was dinner …)
It turned little more dense than I would have liked, and I thought the flavor of the herbs REALLY came through. If you want a more subtle herb flavor, cut down the amount of italian seasoning.
I threw a little pumpkin in the dough just because I have pumpkin coming out of my ears right now. I baked up a gargantuan pumpkin the other day and filled up 4 quart jars with the puree from this one big orange pumpkin. I hope I have time to make something ELSE with pumpkin before the busy weekend starts …
Rosemary Tomato Focaccia
- 2 c. bread flour
- 1 1/4 c. whole wheat flour
- 1 T. vital wheat gluten
- 2 1/4 t. yeast
- 1 t. salt
- 1 t. Italian seasoning
- 3/4 c. + 1 T. water
- 1/2 c. pumpkin puree
- 1/4 c. olive oil
- 1/4 c. shredded Asiago cheese
For the top:
- Fresh garden tomato, thinly sliced
- 1 – 2 cloves garlic, peeled and finely chopped
- Coarse sea salt
- Fresh ground pepper
- Finely chopped fresh rosemary
- Throw the ingredients for the dough into your bread machine and set it on the “dough”setting.
- When the dough is finished, I cut it into two pieces and made two smaller focaccia. You could also make one larger focaccia.
- Shape the dough into a ball, then flatten it gently with your fingers or use a rolling pin till it’s 1/2 to 3/4 inch thick.
- Brush lightly with olive oil or spray with cooking spray, cover with a clean towel and let rise until it’s about doubled in size, about 40 minutes or so.
- Arrange the tomato slices on top, then sprinkle with garlic, sea salt, pepper and rosemary.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes to an hour or until the crust is golden brown and the loaf sounds hollow when you tap it.
I did the weirdest thing this year. As we were carving pumpkins, I saved the pieces we cut out of the pumpkins, chopped off the outer skin, put them in a bowl with a little water, covered the bowl, and microwaved it until the pumpkin was cooked. Then I put the chunks into my handi chopper and voila! I had a nice little treasure-bit of pumpkin. I didn’t know what I was going to use it for yet, but I knew I wanted SOMETHING pumpkin.
And then BranAppetit posted this dip and I was compelled to run into the kitchen right away and make it. It took all of a few minutes to put together. It even got me to eat an apple. Did you know I don’t eat apples? I really don’t like apples all that much. I love them in pie or other baked things, but I’m not all that fond of apples. My daughter eats them like crazy so we always have lots of them on hand.
But with this dip, I could eat apples every day.
Festive and delicious, quick, easy and healthy. A little addictive.
Pumpkin Dip for Fruit or Crackers
- 3 oz cream cheese, softened
- 3 oz greek yogurt
- 1/4 cup pumpkin puree
- 1 Tbsp brown sugar
- 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
- 1/2 tsp vanilla
- just a pinch of salt
- Combine all ingredients in a handi chopper or food processor and whir until smooth.
- Serve with graham crackers, sliced apples (or other fruit), or gingersnaps.
I did try the dip with graham crackers; it’s delicious that way too. I hear it’s heavenly with gingersnaps.
This recipe was made by We Heart Vegan for the Secret Recipe Club–I love her name for it! “Pumpkin Pie Cheesecake Dip”
with Maple Amaretto Whipped Cream
I love bread pudding, partly because my mother used to make it for us when we were kids but also because it is transformational.
It transforms old crusty unwanted bread into a warm, elegant, soft and comforting dessert or breakfast.
So appropriate for fall when the world is in a state of transformation. Summer is retreating and winter is on her way. The trees are transforming from their summer selves into their winter state of sleep. My son says the display of color on the trees is their way of saying goodnight. I like that thought.
It all parallels the transformations occurring in our lives. My daughter is transforming from a girl to a young lady, my son is beginning his transformation from teenage life to adult-hood, and me? I am in the process of discovering myself. I got divorced a couple years ago, and it was very painful, but it didn’t take me long to realize that it was the right thing for all of us. I mourned the death of that relationship, then I rejoiced as I re-discovered pieces of myself I had locked away. And I began my transformation. Sometimes I feel like I just want to settle into a relationship again. I get frustrated that I can’t seem to find someone to love, but I noticed that with each new man I date, I learn something new about myself. I feel a bit like a butterfly trying out my new wings.
Pumpkin Amaretto Bread Pudding
Amaretto: An Italian amber-colored liqueur with an almondlike flavor, although it is actually flavored with apricot kernels; it was originally made in Saronno and called Amaretto di Saronno. (A little info I got from my friend at Delicacies by Dan)
Inspired by: Eat Drink and Be Merry’s Pumpkin Pecan Bread Pudding
- Crusty or old Bread, cubed and toasted (about 4 cups of bread cubes)
- 1 c. fat free half and half
- 1/2 c. buttermilk
- 1/8 c. amaretto
- 1 t. pumpkin pie seasoning
- 1/4 c. brown sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 c. pumpkin (canned or cooked)
- 1 t. vanilla
- 1/4 c. toasted pecans
- 1/8 c. maple syrup
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut the bread into 1-inch cubes and place on a baking sheet to toast lightly, about 5 minutes or so.
- Spray a small casserole dish with cooking spray and place the toasted bread cubes in the casserole dish.
- Whisk the wet ingredients (half and half through vanilla) in a bowl until fully mixed.
- Pour the pumpkin mixture over the bread in the casserole and fold gently to coat the bread. Let sit for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Sprinkle the top of the pudding with toasted pecans and drizzle with the maple syrup.
- Bake 50 to 60 minutes or until the pudding is set. It should spring back when you press lightly into the top. Let cool for 10 minutes.
- Serve warm. Drizzle with maple syrup and top with homemade whipped cream (see below)
Maple Amaretto Whipped Cream
- 1/2 pint of whipping cream
- 1/8 c. maple syrup
- 1/8 t. pumpkin pie seasoning
- 2 t. amaretto