30 11 / 2011
I have never been much of a pumpkin pie fan. Don’t get me wrong I will eat it, especially if it is covered with lots of whipped, but it is definitely not one of my favorites. However, not having pumpkin pie on Thanksgiving seemed like some sort of sacrilege.
Flipping through a magazine one day I came across a pumpkin mousse pie with a chocolate crust topped with whipped cream that I just could not resist. It was even more delicious than I expected and by far the most popular pie at Thanksgiving.
I am always a fan of homemade crusts and this one is no exception. It is simply a mix of chocolate wafers, sugar, and butter. I didn’t promise this was going to be a healthy pie, but who is trying to be healthy on Thanksgiving. The filling is a mousse, which is flavored by pumpkin, maple syrup, and seasonal spices. I made the first two layers the day before and let it sit in the fridge. The whipped cream I made right before serving. It made more than we needed for the pie, but was able to use it for other desserts too. Over the last year I have been making my own whipped cream and it is a million times better than cool whip and pretty darn easy.
With this pie I leave you with one final question: is making pumpkin pie after Thanksgiving a no-no like wearing white after labor day? In my head I always had this idea that Thanksgiving was the cut-off for making pumpkin baked goods. If this is not the case with you here are my other pumpkin recipes from the season:
for the crust:
30 chocolate wafers, such as Famous
2 tablespoons light-brown sugar
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
for the filling:
1 1/2 cups pure pumpkin puree
4 ounces light cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 cup packed light-brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 cup pure maple syrup
1 cup cold heavy cream
for the topping:
1 cup cold heavy cream
1 tablespoon confectioners’ sugar
Make crust: Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In a food processor, process wafers and brown sugar until finely ground. With machine running, slowly add butter and process until mixture resembles wet sand. Firmly press crumb mixture into bottom and up side of 9-inch pie plate. Bake until crust is dry and set, 10-12 minutes. Let cool completely on a wire rack.
Make filling: In a clean food processor, process pumpkin puree, cream cheese, brown sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg until smooth, scraping down side as needed. With machine running, add maple syrup in a slow, steady stream. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat cream on high until stiff peaks form, 3 minutes. With a rubber spatula, gently fold pumpkin mixture into whipped cream. Spoon filling into crust and refrigerate until set, 3 hours (or up to 1 day).
Make toppping: In medium bowl, using electric mixer, beat cream and confectioners’ sugar on high until stiff peaks form, 3 minutes. With spatula, mound topping over pie and serve immediately.
Source: barely adapted from Everyday Food November 2011
03 11 / 2011
Do you remember the canned pumpkin shortage last year? Maybe my fear of another shortage is what has been making me stock up on canned pumpkin. I also take into consideration there is a limited period of time where you can justify making pumpkin items. Some friends recently sent me a pumpkin macaroni & cheese recipe and a baked pumpkin oatmeal recipe that I will have to give a try.
These pumpkin bars were something I made recently for friends. I thought they were pretty good, but when I first made them I was on the fence about posting about them. However, they were a hit and when some people asked me for the recipe I decided to share the recipe.
I expected these bars to be more like pumpkin blondies, but they ended up being more cakey. This also could be because I substituted a stick of butter for a half a cup of applesauce. After reading some other reviews of the recipe I ended up only using 6 oz of chocolate chips instead of 12oz. I thought this was the perfect amount. I didn’t have pumpkin pie spice so I substituted 1 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg, 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves, 1/2 teaspoon ginger for 1 tablespoon of the it. Please let me know what you all think of these!
2 cups all-purpose flour (I used 1 cup all-purpose & 1 cup whole wheat)
1 tablespoon pumpkin-pie spice
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup applesauce
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup canned pumpkin puree
1/2 package (6 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 9-by-13-inch baking pan with cooking oil. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, pie spice, baking soda, and salt; set aside.
With an electric mixer, cream butter, applesauce, and sugar on medium-high speed until smooth; beat in egg and vanilla until combined. Beat in pumpkin puree (mixture may appear curdled). Reduce speed to low, and mix in dry ingredients until just combined. Fold in chocolate chips.
Spread batter evenly in prepared pan. Bake until edges begin to pull away from sides of pan and a toothpick inserted in center comes out with just a few moist crumbs attached, 35. Cool completely in pan. Cut into squares.
Source: adapted from Martha Stewart
21 10 / 2011
I had some leftover pumpkin from the granola I made and I just couldn’t let it go to waste. I was looking at different pumpkin recipes and decided to make some pumpkin bread. I found a healthy pumpkin bread recipe that I settled on, but was a little skeptical about it. Can a 140 calorie slice of bread be really that good? It can. I was pleasantly surprised! I was amazed by the texture and moistness. Traditional pumpkin bread has 3 grams of saturated fat and lots of cholesterol. This healthier version has no saturated fat and no cholesterol.
I didn’t put any mix-ins in this bread, but I am sure it would also be good with chocolate chips or nuts. Also, if you want to make this more for a dessert Jordan suggested I make some cream cheese frosting to smother on. I am definitely going to try this next time.
1 cup (packed) light brown sugar
2 large egg whites
1 cup canned pumpkin
1/4 cup canola oil
1/3 cups apple sauce
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray 9x5 loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray with flour.
In large bowl, with wire whisk, combine brown sugar and egg whites. Add pumpkin, oil, applesauce, and vanilla extract; stir to combine.
In medium bowl, combine all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda, and salt. Add flour mixture to pumpkin mixture; stir until just combined. Do not overmix.
Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake 45 to 50 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center of loaf comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes. Invert pumpkin bread onto wire rack; cool completely.
If you prefer to make muffins this recipe makes about 12. Bake for 25 minutes at 350 degrees.
Source:adapted from Good Housekeeping
17 10 / 2011
I know it has been officially fall for quite some time now, but for me it turned into fall last week when the temperature began to drop. At this point I started pulling out my sweaters, drinking hot apple cider, and admiring the changing leaves. It also meant that I was ready for some fall baking.
This weekend we had the chance to head to western NY to spend time with friends and family, take in the scenery, and visit some wineries. It was a pretty awesome weekend. We were staying with our friends who live in Ithaca and always are thankful for their hospitality. As a token of our appreciation I wanted to make them something I knew they would enjoy.
I came across a pumpkin spice granola recipe recently and I thought this would be the perfect gift. I had never made granola before, but I it was pretty simple. This granola is flavored with pumpkin and spices. I ended up putting the granola in mason jars, which made it look more presentable. The jar also helped it travel well. This recipe made about 4 mason jars full of granola. Make some to keep for yourself and to give some to friends.
3 cups old fashioned oatmeal
2 cups quick oats (or old fashioned oats, coarsely ground)
1/2 cup flax meal
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup raw sunflower seeds
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon allspice
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1/2 cup olive oil
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
8 ounces dried cranberries
Preheat oven to 325°. Lightly coat a rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray and set aside. In a large bowl, combine the oatmeal, flax meal, nuts and seeds; stir in the spices until dry ingredients are evenly coated.
In a small saucepan over medium heat, whisk together the brown sugar, honey, pumpkin puree, and oil until combined. Cook just until mixture begins to simmer, and brown sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat; stir in the vanilla and baking soda.
Pour wet ingredients into the bowl with the oats. Using a large wooden spoon or rubber spatula, stir until the oats are thoroughly coated. Pour out onto prepared baking sheet. Bake for 45 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes or until granola is golden brown. Remove from oven and cool completely. When granola has cooled, mix in the dried cranberries.
Source: adapted from She Runs, She Eats