Thursday, October 31, 2013

Day 31: Pumpkin Creme Brulee

I wanted to go out with a bang and saved this recipe for last.  It was pretty easy to make and the presentation was awesome.  I'd love to have a harvest dinner party and serve the pinwheels, the pasta, and these for dessert.  Spencer hollowed out the pumpkins for me and we cooked them while we handed out candy and watched Poltergiest III.  We turned it off because I am afraid of mirrors anyway, and the whole thing is about freaky reflections!!  Anyway, the recipe is from Better Homes and Gardens.  We could be better at crystallizing the sugar, but it was fun.

So, I bet you're wondering, would I do it again?  No.  It was exhausting.  I'd totally do it again for like a week.  There are still some recipes I want to try, like Chocolate Drizzled Pumpkin ProfiterolesPumpkin CornbreadPumpkin Magic Bars, and Pumpkin Macaroons.  Plus recipes I so want to make again, like the chilli, the doughnut holes, and the whoopies.  That's a week right there!  I'm all set for next year.

What were our favorites?  I'd say the top five are the doughnut holes, whoopies, chili, pasta, and dump cake.

How did I do it?  I cut all of these recipes in half, or even fourths, like I do almost everything, and most everything turned out great.  My neighbors and family got a lot of treats.  My trusty Kitchenaid got A LOT of use, as did my dishwasher and measuring cups.  I went through two bags of sugar, two bags of flour, three cartons of eggs, and four packages of butter.  I'd say I used about 25 cans of pumpkin.  I'm pretty sure I gained some weight too, but I haven't checked.  ;)  I'm glad I did it.  It was really fun, even when I had to start baking at 11 at night. And we have a whoooole lot of yummy pumpkin recipes in our cookbook!

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Day 30: Pumpkin Emphanadas

I looove bavarian cream emphanadas from Taco Time.  Sue me.  Last year they had a pumpkin one and I was so excited for it.  It was so gross.  This recipe, however, was a total winner!  In fact, I want one of these right now too.  I'm going to have to flip a coin.  I'm going to make bavarian cream ones and taco cups one night with all the left over phyllo dough.  The recipe is from Better Homes and Gardens and they don't call them emphandas but they so are.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Day 29: Pumpkin Whoopie Pies

Um...woah.  I know it might be blasphemous to say this...but these might, might replace the pumpkin roll.  Although the roll is easier to make...less time consuming.  But these are so fun!  And so delicious!  I got the recipe from my sister, who got it from here.  Don't worry sis, this picture, it's totally a plate for you.  I gave some to my daddy too and he was excited about them.  Crap.  We only have two left and I totally want one now.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Day 28: Pumpkin Roll

Always a classic and always yum-o.  I always use the recipe from Libby's.   I took some to our neighbors because I always cut mine in half.  They make great neighbor gifts.  Last year my grandma and I made like 60 for our neighbors after my pee-in-a-cup debacle.  Good times.  We're planning another insane day of baking with my mom and new sis.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Day 27: Pumpkin Pasta

This was a total winner.  Super yummy, easy, and cheap!  Home run.  I'm adding this to my regular dinner repertoire.  The recipe was from Italian Cooking Made Easy and is reminiscent of a Williams  Sonoma recipe, apparently.  I only had half a can of pumpkin and didn't want to go to the store, so I chanced it.   I think it was the perfect amount!  A full can would've been overpowering.  It was really good with our leftover pumpkin wheels.  And yes, if you're thinking that we eat on the couch a lot, we do.  We'll eat at the table when we have kids.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Day 26: Pumpkin Quesadillas

Spence made these too, cause he's a quesadilla master.  Seriously.  He wasn't sure about these at first, but then he changed his mind.  We were both fans.  The hesitation was that they were a little mushy.  They could've used some crunch.  How to achieve that, I don't know...perhaps nachos?  But like I said, we were both fans.  He said they were even better the next day for lunch.  The recipe came from Closet Cooking.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Day 25: Pumpkin Pesto Wheels

These were really yummy and pretty easy to make, Spencer said, he made them.  I have to be honest though, the bacon overpowered the other flavors.  We both thought so.  Sans bacon would be better I think.  We had them with spaghetti then saved the rest to eat later in the week with some pumpkin Alfredo.  I got the recipe from Foodalogue.  I would totes make them again with said pasta, which is coming later, hold on.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Day 24: Pumpkin Doggie Biscuits

I adapted this recipe from Undressed Skeleton, sent to me by my friend Kari, with the subject line, "Because you're THAT person."  :)  Yes, yes I am.  I adapted this because I have a severe aversion to tuna and I didn't have rolled oats.  I also thought painting it with smushed up berries was slightly ridiculous.  I'm not that person.  Belle LOVED this.  I would suggest, of course, only one per day.  There's a lot of stuff in it that could cause some diarrhea if your puppy ate too much.

My version of the recipe:
1 1/4 c wheat flour
1 egg
1/4 c plus 2-3 Tbs pumpkin divided
Dash of baking soda
2 tsp olive oil
1/4 cup cheddar cheese

Combine all ingredients except 2-3 Tbs pumpkin; add pumpkin by tablespoons until a dough begins to form.  Roll out and cut to desired shape.  Bake at 350 on parchment-lined pan for ten minutes.

1/4 c Greek yogurt
3 Tbs Peanut butter

Combine till smooth and frost cooled cookies.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Day 22: Pumpkin Spiced Hot Chocolate

Very quick.  Spencer whipped this up in our Cocoamotion while I took a shower.  It was perfect after our cold night in the Haunted Forest at Sherwood Hills, which was awesome, by the way.  I was unaware of my brother's fear of chainsaw men. Before we went in, my sister-in-law gave him permission to leave her and run as fast as he could when we saw one, and I thought she was being funny.  Never have I seen ANYONE run so fast as my little brother did.  He was so afraid he ran all the way to the car, got in, and backed out.  I think he would've driven away if we hadn't made it to the car, the chainsaw guy sawing at the car windows!  It was hilarious.  I'm sure he missed the group behind us because he was having so much fun tormenting my brother.  Oh, the recipe is from Eggs on Sunday.  And I finally opened my Halloween marshmallows.  :)

Monday, October 21, 2013

Day 21: Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes

 I had leftover batter and cheesecake filling from the muffins, and I also had gingersnaps.  So, I thought I'd be brilliant and make mini pumpkin cheesecakes.  They failed.  My batter to cheesecake ratio was off.  Too much batter, not nearly enough cheesecake.  Gooey mess.  Instead, try this one from Martha Stewart!  She never fails.

Bonus: Pumpkin Pepper Jack Chicken Enchiladas

Now, I realize this is a baking blog, but a girl's gotta eat, right?  And the best thing to eat before your sweets is Mexican favorite!  Here, my friends, is a spectacular enchilada that I cooked up last night.  It was amazefest 2013 and I would like to personally thank Little Mommy, Big Appetite for her genius!  Just the right amount of heat and cheesiness.  Magic.  Pure magic.

Disclaimer:  I didn't have enough pepper jack for the top, so I smothered it with the filling.  It was bueno.  Also, we don't do sides at our house.  We will when we have littles.  Furthermore, we eat in front of the TV while we watch our shows.  And forgive my food photography.  I know it's lacking.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Day 20: Pumpkin Butterscotch Brownies

I was pretty sure these brownies would change the course of my entire life.  I was so excited to eat them I could hardly contain myself.  The batter was so good....the brownies...not so much.  They were basically a gooey mess.  I think they might work better in a jelly roll pan and with less or no ice cream topping.  Recipe from Picky Palate.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Day 19: Pumpkin Cheesecake Muffins

I made these this year too.  I'm going to go eat one now.  I would call these cupcakes instead of muffins, but don't worry, I still  ate two for breakfast.  I took them to work too and they were eaten very quickly.  The struesel topping was yummy, yummy.  I'm pretty sure I made a "Nom, Nom, Nom" sound whilst eating them.  From Sugar Cook

Friday, October 18, 2013

31 Days of Pumpkin: Days 1-18

A couple of years ago, I was inspired after watching Julie and Julia.  If she could make every recipe in Julia Child's cookbook, I could do something like that too!  I decided to make something using pumpkin every single day for a month.  Crazy?  Perhaps.  Or brilliant.  Husband was super excited!  We love pumpkin.  If you love it too, follow along!  I'll post new recipes I plan to try as well!  So, I know I'm a bit behind, forgive me?   If so, here are days one through 18.

Day One:  Pumpkin Pancakes
I thought these were a fail but Spence ate four.  We were heading up to my family cabin for conference weekend so I was in a bit of a hurry.  I used pumpkin pie filling in place of the oil with my pancake mix.  It was like a pumpkin pie punch in the face.  Too much.  But, like I said, Spence ate four.

Day Two:  Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

These are always a staple in the fall months.  Just mix one spice cake mix and one 15 oz can of pumpkin, a cup of choc chips (or the whole bag....) and bake at 350 for 20 min.  Voila!

Day Three:  Pumpkin Chili
This is my fave recipe so far.  It was super duper yummy.  Totally going in the fall rotation.  I used this recipe from (never home) maker.  It made enough for left overs and I think I want them for dinner tonight.  But what to make husband?

Day Four:  Pumpkin Ice cream
I whipped this up the night before because the custard had to chill overnight.  I was a little worried about how it would turn out because the consistency was a little lumpy...and I whisked my little arm off.  BUT, Spence put it in the ice cream maker while I was in SLC at my doctor's appointment and by the time I got home, we had delicious, creamy, non-lumpy ice cream.  I used this recipe from a Parisian man.  It was yummy, but next time I will cut the ginger in half.  It was a little overpowering for my taste.

Day Five:  Pumpkin Cream Cheese Tarts
So, I used this recipe for pumpkin cream cheese wontons, but I'm trying to be frugal in this whole project, so, I had pie crust on hand and not wonton wrappers, so, I used my cookie cutters and made little pumpkins, filled them with the filling, and baked them.  I also used a can of boiled sweetened condensed milk in lieu of melting down Kraft caramels. 

Day Six:  Pumpkin Curry Soup
We both look forward to this every year.  The recipe is from my very dear friend, Jerilynn, who just bought me a high heel tape dispenser that is adorable.  Recipe goes like this:
2 Tbs butter
1 c onion
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1 1/2 tsp curry powder
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp salt
                                                         3 c chicken broth
                                                         15 oz or 1 can canned pumpkin
                                                         12 oz or 1 can evaporated milk
Melt the butter in a saucepan and add onion and garlic.  Cook 2-3 min until tender.  Add spices and cook one min.  Add broth and pumpkin and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to low and simmer 15-20 min.  Stir in evaporated milk.  *Transfer to a blender in batches and blend until smooth.  *I puree the garlic and onion in a food processor before cooking them.  (Still cook in the butter 1-2 min)  This eliminates the need for the blender after, and I puree onions always for Spencer.

Day Seven:  Pumpkin Blondies
These were yummy and easy to make.  I followed this recipe from Sunny Side up in San Diego.  The only issue I had was that even in a 9x13 pan, they were so thick they didn't cook all the way through.  Next time, I'd either increase the cooking temperature or use two 8x10 pans.  They were really good though, after zapping them in the microwave for a few seconds.  The microwave cooks from the inside out, you see.  A simple solution for done outsides and not done insides.

I had leftover pumpkin ice cream and caramel sauce on mine, trying to recreate the Blondie at Applebees but with a pumpkin flair.  It was waaaaaaay too much.  I ate like two bites.

Spencer was smarter and just had vanilla ice cream on top of his.  I ate four bites of his.

Day Eight: Pumpkin Parfaits
These were fast and easy, which I needed since I was making pie pops for a birthday celebration as well.  And dinner.  You should've seen my [beautiful] kitchen.  Three loads of dishes!  Anyway, the recipe I used called for gingersnaps and whipped cream, but I had oreos and coolwhip.  I didn't eat mine till the next day and the oreos had soaked up some of the pumpkin custard...oooh it was yummy.

Day Nine:  Pumpkin Buttons
This one I just made up.  I cut some mini pumpkins from some leftover pie scraps and made your basic pumpkin pie filling.  Then i put the button crust in the bottom of my mini muffin pan and then a dollop of filling and baked them for about 15 minutes.  They weren't that pretty, but they were quite the hit with the fam. 

Day Ten:  Pumpkin Caramel Apples
I got this idea from Paper, Plate, and Plane, a blog I follow.  Her recipe, however, didn't have any actual pumpkin in it.  So, I made a pumpkin caramel sauce with a can of sweetened condensed milk, boiled, about two tablespoons pumpkin, and some cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and cloves.  I didn't have the cinnamon sticks for the stem though, so, lower cuteness factor.  They were yummy. 

Day 11:  Pumpkin Snickerdoodles
These were yummy. Perfect balance of pumpkin and snickerdoodleness.  They were pretty easy too.  The recipe I used is from Annie's Eats here.  How did I find all of these recipes, you ask...Pinterest, of course.

Day 12:  Spicy Coconut Pumpkin Soup
This was really good and different enough from our previous two soups that we didn't feel like we were eating the same thing.  The recipe is from Better Homes and Garden's here.

Day 13:  Old Fashioned Pumpkin Bread
It looks good right?  Looks, and smells, can be deceiving.  It was so gross I spit it out.  Sooo molassesy.  And I have nothing against molasses.  It was like molasses punched me in the face.  It smelled really good though so it was good potporri for my garbage can.  No recipe.  You don't want it.

Day 14:  Pumpkin Doughnut Holes
O....m...g.  These were SOOOOO GOOD.  I could've eaten these ten at a time and every single day for the rest of my life.  I wish I had some right now.  They were from the Craving Chronicles and the name fits.  I liked that they were baked and not fried; one, I don't have a fryer, two, I'm afraid of frying things, and three, it's so messy.  The only tasking part about these was the rolling in butter and then cinnamon and sugar got slightly tasking after about 13...but that was before I'd tasted them!  So worth it.

Day 15:  Pumpkin Dump Cake
This was amazeballs.  This was my first "dump cake" and I won't lie, I was skeptical.  But, I was pleasantly surprised.  The toffee bits were sooo yummy in it and I love hot gooey things with ice cream on top.  We have more in the fridge but we need to buy more vanilla ice cream to top it.  It's not the same without it.  Mmmm.  From Cookies and Cups.

Day 16:  Crockpot Pumpkin Pudding
I forgot to take a photo of this but it looked just like the one from Annie Oakley's Kitchen.  This was on a Sunday when we spoke in church, so it was super easy and it was nice to use my crock pot for something different.  It made the house smell really good too.  Spencer loved it but I thought it was just okay.  Ps.  I don't use my crockpot nearly enough.  I have a 101 crockpot recipes book but I haven't tried many of them.  Anyone have any crockpot faves? 

Day 17:  Pumpkin Oreo Tarts
I don't have mini tart pans so mine aren't as cute as the ones in Adventures in Dessert.  It was pretty yummy, but it didn't blow me away.

Day 18:  Pumpkin  French Toast.
I forgot to take a picture of this too, because it burned when I stuck it under the broiler for a second...or two.  My new oven is hot.  To make it I took a thick crusted french bread and dipped in in an eggNOG wash!  A pumpkin eggnog wash!

What's planned for day 19 you ask?  Come back tomorrow to find out!

October: Baseball Cakes and Pumpkin! Oh my!

I love, love, love October!  I am widowed to the playoffs, yes, but in all honesty, I like baseball!  Maybe just not AS much as my cute hubs.  He is (we are) DIEHARD Redsox fans.  So when our beloved ex-roomie asked me to make a Yankees hat for her fiancee, he was less-than thrilled!  I had Devin send me pics of Shaunee's favorite hat, and since she's not a cake fan, we decided to do a giant cookie shell filled with ice cream for her sweetheart.

I thought this whole cookie thing would be easy peasy.  Um, no.  I went through three rolls of cookie dough to finally get the cookie to be cooked evenly in my Bake n' Fill pan (Betty Crocker- it's amaze).  Finally, I loaded it with a whole carton of chocolate ice cream and iced it.  Mmmmmm.

I used a new fondant, and wasn't that impressed.  If it ain't broke, don't fix it, right?  I'll stick with Duff!  I used sugar paper and my Cricut to cut out the logos, then painted them.  I have a normal Cricut and it works (most of the time) with sugar paper, but I'd love to get my hands on a Cricut cake!   But I digress.

Here's how she turned out!!

Go, Ya....Baseball!  And happy birthday, Shaunee.

P.S.  Stand by for an ENTIRE month of pumpkin recipes.

Day 23: Pumpkin Fudge

My momma helped me make this at her house yesterday because she's a whiz at softballing.  (It's a stage of boiling sugary things.)  It was really yummy but I'm not really a fudge girl and it made a lot so  I thought I'd cut it up and take it Visiting Teaching.  Feel free to leave suggestions for the tag.  ;)  Recipe from Recipe Girl.