The Great Pumpkin

Sorry for my clear hiatus from blogging this past week. I instead spent the time catching up with friends and family (whom I haven’t spoken to in months) via skype and phone calls. I also want to apologize for  any “ghost posts”. Apparently  I had chosen to date some blog posts months down the road so I had time to either complete them or  be sure they were ready to post. That obviously did not work out. Live and learn. Anyways changing the subject: The Great Pumpkin!

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In the last few weeks the temperature has dropped  10-15 degrees and now that the sun is going down around 5pm, it is clear our wonderful fall is fading quickly. For more proof of this our creative Halloween pumpkin art headed for the dumpster last weekend and my pumpkin candle is down to it’s last bit of wax.

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But fall is not over yet, we still have a few colored leaves on the trees and plenty more on the ground. And I’m pretty sure I’m not done experimenting with cans of pumpkin puree. As we transition into these late fall days I thought I’d review the wonderful pumpkin goodies of the season so far:

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1. Pumpkin spice latte mix and Pumpkin spice creamer.  I mentioned this once before in Glimpses of Fall.  These two items are the easy and cheap way to keep me out of the Starbucks line. If you want some helpful hints on how to make your own Pumpkin spice creamer see Coffee Creamer Simplified.

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2. Roasted Pumpkin seeds: sweet and salty. This was my first year attempting to roast pumpkin seeds. And yes I used the pile of seeds you saw in our carving pictures (why go and buy them when they come with the pumpkin?). I split the seeds in half and tried two different recipes: one sweet and one salty. For both I used foxinthepine.com as a baseline.

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I found that after melting butter in with the mixture you can pretty much add any seasonings and stick them in the oven to roast. For the sweet seeds I used honey instead of white sugar and for the salty/savory I added Siracha to the mix of spices they listed. Both seed recipes turned out as great snack for Halloween and to throw in packed lunches.

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3. Pumpkin Cheesecake popsicles. It may seem odd to some of you but they honestly taste like mini frozen creamy pumpkin pies. The ingredients and instructions are simple. I used one box of sugar free cheesecake pudding mix, a little pumpkin puree, milk, and fall spices. For more on my pudding pop/homemade popsicles and ingredients check out cookies n cream pudding pop; or  Tropical Banana creamsicles .

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4.Pumpkin snicker doodle cookies. These turned out amazing. I made them for our Tuesday night small group and had Luke take the leftovers to work. When he brought the cookie bin home that night there was nothing but crumbs left. I’ll take that as a compliment. I got the base recipe from highheelsandgrills.com.

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I made three small changes to this recipe: One I added a pack of dry pumpkin pie pudding mix. Two I didn’t flatten out the cookies before baking. And three I used brown sugar to coat the outside instead of white. This made these snicker doodles crispy on the outside and just the right chewy softness on the inside. (If you can’t find the pumpkin pie pudding mix you can alway use vanilla.)

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5. Pumpkin brittle. This was also my first year to try pumpkin brittle and to be honest my experiment didn’t work out the way I had hoped. My candied brittle mixture had great flavor but I ended up with a green pumpkin seed filled blob instead of crunchy brittle. But this will not discourage me from trying again next year. Speaking of next year when I do make it I will probably be using eatsybitsydaisy.com‘s recipe which is an amazing mock See’s candy peanut brittle recipe.

What about you?  Do you have more fall pumpkin flavors headed your way? Anyone out there anticipating pumpkin pie for  Thanksgiving ?

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