Pumpkin Things

Pumpkin things 10-12: The rest of the things!

Saturday, November 5th, 2011

Pumpkin pie squares. These were pretty tasty, but a little bit too deep to eat as squares, per se. Next time, I’ll double the crust and make in a 9 by 13 pan instead.

Pumpkin bread! I always make pumpkin bread. I made what was called “Pumpkin Gingerbread” this year, but it didn’t taste much like gingerbread to me, so I’ll be going back to my other recipe. Still pretty good though.

Finally, the last pumpkin beer:

Honestly, this was pretty gross. The good news is, it’s big and so halfway through, you stop caring and just chug it.

I have two more pumpkin recipes that I really wanted to make but didn’t get to in October, so I’ll still probably post about them later. My grand total for 2011 was only 12, so not as good as last year, but whatevs!

Happy 3 days after Halloween!

Thursday, November 3rd, 2011

This is my friend’s pumpkin. She did a kickass job and got a lot of compliments from trick-or-treaters!

My pumpkin looks pretty awesome in a regular picture…

But when lit…eh, not as awesome. This was my first ever try at that fancy-pants carving where you don’t carve all the way through. I didn’t hollow it out enough.

I actually have quite a few more pumpkin things to share from October, but I was side tracked on Halloween by this pretty thing:

While I was photographing the pumpkins in their natural habitat, she wandered up on our porch, rubbing things like she owned the place. This was clearly someone’s pet, but there weren’t any tags or anything, so we decided to take her inside for the night.

We posted a bunch of stuff online to try to find the owner, and set her up with some food, water, and a litterbox. We have three other cats, so we had to keep her separate from everyone else. She was pretty sad about that and made very cute and sad meows when we left :(

The next morning, I took her to the vet to check and see if she had a microchip (she didn’t.) Fortunately, later that day her owner contacted us and they were happily reunited. The end!

Pumpkin thing #9: PANCAKES

Sunday, October 30th, 2011

Holy crap you guys, these are so good they’ll make you weep.

I did change a few things. I used whole wheat flour, I used two cups of half and half instead of 1.5 cups of milk, and I tossed in some nutmeg. As written, the batter is really really thick, so if you use milk, you may want to use more than indicated as well.

In order to enjoy these to their fullest potential, you MUST use REAL maple syrup with them. It took all of my willpower to not eat all of them at once.

Pumpkin Thing #8: Cider and a Sweater

Saturday, October 29th, 2011

I got these from my brother-in-law, who just remembered he doesn’t like pumpkin things.

This was pretty good, but I will say I prefer regular cider.

On a side note, look what I finished!

Normally as I approach the end of a knitting project, I begin to get bored with it. I try the pieces on, and there’s always one or two more painful inches to go when really, I want to be done with it and move on. Joyfully, when I tried this sweater on right before the hem, it was the perfect length and the perfect fit!

This pattern is from Knitscene Fall 2008, called the Opulent Raglan. The changes I made:
~Twisted stitches on either side of center cable were mirrored (left twist on left, right twist on right.)
~Twisted stitches on each sleeve were mirrored (one sleeve is left twist, one sleeve is right twist.)
~Increased number of collar ribbing rows to 5 plus bindoff.
~k1p1 ribbing at bottom hem instead of folded hem.
~The biggest change I made was doubling the number of waist shaping decreases and increases. I have a much smaller, higher waist compared to my hips and bust, so I did 8 sets of each instead of 4.

Pumpkin thing #7: Yogurt, and a bento!

Friday, October 28th, 2011

Thank you, Target brand Archer Farms, for making dessert yogurt appropriately themed for fall.

On a side note, I’ve been craving BLTs like crazy. Really, it has all the necessary food groups. You could probably survive only on BLTs if necessary. The other day I packed myself a pretty cute BLT bento for work.

The corn was just for filler, and I like corn. Maybe next time I’ll slice my bread up into quarters so they fit in the box and replace the corn.

Pumpkin Things #5 and #6: Fritters! And Soup! With CURRY!!!

Thursday, October 27th, 2011

I made these one morning when I had some extra time before work:

Obviously, these are much better fresh. They are very slightly curry flavoured, but I bet they’d be good if you did sweet seasonings (a little sugar, cinnamon, etc.) as a dessert fritter with some ice cream or something.

Sometimes though, the sweet pumpkin stuff can be a little overwhelming, which is why I always make a curry soup with my pumpkin.

I follow this recipe exactly, and every time it’s delicious. DOUBLE PUMPKIN CURRY POWER in this meal right here.

Pumpkin thing #4: Frozen Yogurt!

Tuesday, October 25th, 2011

A trip to the MOA revealed one surprise for which I was hoping, and one completely unexpected and slightly surreal surprise.

First, Pumpkin Thing #4: Frozen Yogurt!

This was really, really good. I topped it with graham cracker crumbs.

Also, who knew that Santa really liked to eat at Tony Roma’s in the off season?

Seriously, there were a dozen or more Santas all in the same place. It was weird and hilarious. Can you imagine being a 5-year old walking with Mom or Dad through MOA and all of a sudden, dozens of Santas? Or being drunk/high and seeing that? We were explaining this to some stoner guy working at Superdry and his eyes got really big and he was all “WHOA.”

Pumpkin Thing #3: Pumpkin Cheesecake and Dessertstravaganza!

Friday, October 21st, 2011

I made A LOT of dessert last weekend. I started out wanting to make mini pumpkin cheesecakes, so I took some Biscoff (the same cookies you get on Delta flights) and graham crackers and butter and made some crusts in the bottom of 12 cupcake liners. When I made my cheesecake filling, I was too lazy to open a new package of cream cheese, so I just used the half-package and adjusted.

Here’s where things went a little wonky.

Turns out that only makes enough filling for 8 cheese-cup-cakes (though I should have made 6, really, they should have been filled all the way to the top.) which left me with 4 crusts with no filling. At this point, I decided the best course of action was to make an apple pie. I could just put some of the apple filling in the remaining cups, and since I was using a crumb topping and not a pie crust topping, I’d put that on the little pies too! It would work perfectly!

Except, of course, that the filling I had was barely enough for the pie I was making since the only pie pan I have is DEEP. I managed to eke out two minipies, but there were still two crumb crusts left. Well crap. I just chopped up some apples, mixed them with brown sugar, flour, and craisins and said to hell with it.

I am pleased to announce that not only was my pie the best fucking apple pie EVER…

All three of my mini desserts turned out pretty good as well. So good, even when I dropped a bunch of them they all held their shape!

The pumpkin cheesecakes were a real accomplishment for me though. I don’t bake very often, I’m more of a “make dinner” person than I am a “make dessert” person, so I’d never made cheesecake before. And I was convinced I was doing it completely wrong because they took SO LONG to finish baking, almost triple the time for every recipe I checked.

They are for reals delicious. Better than plain cheesecake. It’s going on my “make every fall” list.

Pumpkin Thing #2: Seeds two ways!

Tuesday, October 18th, 2011

I did my apple and pumpkin picking about a week ago (I’ll do a post on that later) and did my pumpkin roasting the next day. Along with pumpkin roasting comes pumpkin SEED roasting. The first pumpkin only gave me about 1.5 cups of seeds, so I had to improvise a little bit with the roasting, and decided to spice things up a bit this go round. I used 1 tsp of olive oil and one tsp of butter for each 0.5 cups of seeds, then added seasoning to suit.

In the back, we have parmesan roasted seeds. These were super tasty and a good little savoury snack. Easy peasy, as much grated parmesan cheese as you want (I think I used 2tbsp per half cup of seeds, but I didn’t really measure).
In the front, cinnamon sugar roasted seeds. If, like me, you have an incorrigible sweet tooth, these are your jammy. Per half cup of seeds and fats as above, 2 tsp sugar, 1/2 tsp cinnamon (or more, again kinda eyeballed it) and a pinch or two of nutmeg.
Tray was roasted pretty low temp, probably 300 or 325, for maybe 40 minutes. I watched them to make sure they didn’t burn) the cinnamon sugar ones are especially susceptible to this) but I think the temps were low enough that they dried and roasted nicely. They were so tasty I wish I had more seeds!

Pumpkin thing #1: BEER

Monday, October 17th, 2011

I’m starting my pumpkination celebration with a libation. See that label? It says “Ale Brewed With Pumpkins”

Okay, the label is hard to read, but there’s a bigass pumpkin right on it, so trust me, it says it has pumpkin in it. I think I read somewhere that a number of places had run out of this particular pumpkin beer (made by Southern Tier brewery?) so I guess a gold star for me for getting one. It was, I suppose, as pumpkiny as you could expect a beer to be, but it was almost overwhelmed by the hoppiness and spiciness. All told, a decent way to start my pumpkin-flavoured journey.