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All things pumpkin

Story and photo by Angie Sutton

www.mothersapronstrings.com

As I write this article, it happens to be around lunch time with the outside temperature topping out at 65 F and a healthy dose of moisture falling from the sky. No doubt my first batch of chili will soon be in the slow cooker for dinner tonight.

I know it’s not technically fall yet but certainly all indications point toward it soon approaching. Friday night high school football games, Sunday night football on the television and at the shop downtown decorations of orange, brown and yellow have taken over. My niece Lindsey has been working hard on her FFA Pink Pumpkin Patch all summer and says there are a few approaching maturity. Speaking of the great orange fruit, I was perusing that internet resource where you pin things you like, and it is abuzz with all things pumpkin.

By now you’ve noticed that I referred to the pumpkin as a fruit. Pumpkins belong to the family Cucurbitacae, which includes cucumbers, squash and melons. Within this family is the genus Cucurbita, which includes all varieties of pumpkin. Biologically speaking and very basically, pumpkins have seeds so they are a fruit. Whether you refer to it as a vegetable or a fruit, it is a tasty base for all types of cakes, breads, muffins, pies and the like. I’ve compiled a rundown of the hottest recipes containing pumpkin on the popular pin site right now. After adapting and testing a few, hands down, fall is here.


Maple-Glazed Pumpkin Coffee Cake

2 c. flour
1 c. sugar
3 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1 egg
1/3 c. butter
1/2 c. milk
1 c. pumpkin puree
2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice

Topping:

1/2 c. walnuts, chopped
1/4 c. flour
1/2 c. brown sugar
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 c. butter

Glaze:

1 c. powdered sugar
2 Tbsp. milk
1/2 tsp. maple flavoring

In a large bowl, mix together flour, sugar, baking powder, salt egg, butter, milk, pumpkin and pumpkin pie spice. Pour batter into a greased 9- by 13-inch pan.

Topping: Mix walnuts, flour, brown sugar, cinnamon and butter until crumbly. Sprinkle evenly over batter. Bake at 350 F for 45 minutes.

Glaze: Mix together powdered sugar, milk and maple flavoring. Drizzle over the top.


Slow Cooker Pumpkin Spice Latte

8 Tbsp. pumpkin puree
4 Tbsp. vanilla
2 tsp. cinnamon
4 c. strongly brewed coffee
6 c. milk
8 Tbsp. granulated sugar

Combine milk and coffee and pour into slow cooker. Whip together the remaining ingredients and pour into the slow cooker. Using an immersion blender, mix ingredients well. Cover and cook on high for 2 hours. Serve with a spray or dollop of whipped topping!


Pumpkin Pound Cake

1 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
1 1/2 c. granulated sugar
1/2 c. vanilla yogurt
3 egg whites
1 c. canned pumpkin puree

Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease a loaf pan or four mini loaf pans, set aside. In a bowl, sift together flour, cinnamon, salt, baking soda, baking powder, cloves and nutmeg. Set aside. In a large mixing bowl, combine sugar, yogurt and egg whites. Whisk thoroughly until blended. Stir in pumpkin puree. Add the dry ingredients to the pumpkin mixture. Stir until completely combined. Pour into pan and bake for 60 minutes or until toothpick inserted comes out clean. Let cool on a wire rack.


Pumpkin Cheesecake Muffins

Source: Sally’s Baking Addiction (fellow blogger)

Topping:

1/4 c. brown sugar
1/2 c. all-purpose flour
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 c. unsalted butter, melted

Muffins:

1 3/4 c. all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1/2 c. brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 c. pumpkin puree
1/2 c. vegetable oil
1/3 c. milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract

Filling:

6 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 egg yolk
1 tsp. vanilla extract
3 Tbsp. granulated sugar

Preheat oven to 425 F. Line two muffin pans. Set aside. Make topping first: Mix brown sugar, flour and cinnamon in a small bowl until combined. Add melted butter and mix until crumbs form. Set aside. Make the pumpkin muffins: In a large bowl, sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice until combined. Set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk the brown sugar and eggs together until combined. Whisk in the pumpkin, oil, milk and vanilla. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir until just combined. Make the filling: In a medium bowl, beat the cream cheese with an electric mixer on medium-high speed until creamy. Add the egg yolk, vanilla extract and sugar. Beat until combined. Spoon 1 tablespoon of pumpkin muffin batter into the muffin cups. Layer with about 1 spoonful of filling, then another tablespoon of muffin batter to fill cup. Sprinkle each muffin evenly with crumb topping and press the topping down into the muffin so it sticks. Bake the muffins for 5 minutes at 425 F. Keeping the muffins in the oven, lower the temperature down to 350 F and bake for an additional 15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow the muffins to cool for 10 minutes in the muffin sheet, then transfer to a wire rack to cool until ready to eat.


Pumpkin Sheet Cake

4 eggs
1 c.granulated sugar
2/3 c. brown sugar
1/2 c. vegetable oil
1/2 c. applesauce
15-oz can pumpkin puree
2 c. all-purpose flour
2 tsp. baking powder
3 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp. ground cloves
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda

Cream Cheese Frosting:

6 Tbsp. cream cheese, softened
6 Tbsp. butter, softened
2 c. confectioners’ sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 350 F. Using an electric mixer at medium speed, combine eggs, sugar, oil and pumpkin until fluffy. Stir together flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt and baking soda. Add dry ingredients to pumpkin mixture and mix at low speed until thoroughly combined and batter is smooth. Spread batter into a greased 10- by 13-inch baking pan. Bake for 30 minutes. Let cool completely before frosting.

To make icing, beat the cream cheese and butter in a medium bowl with an electric mixer until smooth. Add sugar and mix at low speed until combined. Stir in vanilla and mix again. Spread on cooled pumpkin cake.


Pumpkin Pie Truffles

1 1/2 c. brown sugar
1 1/2 c. granulated sugar
3/4 c. butter
1/2 c. heavy whipping cream
1/2 c. pumpkin puree
1/8 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
1/4 tsp. allspice
3 c. white chocolate chips
20 marshmallows
1 tsp. vanilla extract
24 oz. vanilla candy coating

In large saucepot, mix sugars, butter, milk, pumpkin, cinnamon, salt, ginger, nutmeg, cloves and allspice. Bring to a boil stirring constantly for 10 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in white chocolate chips, vanilla and marshmallows until melted. Pour mixture into a mixing bowl and beat for about 2 minutes with a hand-held mixer until smooth. Put mixing bowl with mixture in refrigerator about 60 minutes until firm. Use a small scoop to form balls of fudge, roll and place on baking sheet. Freeze truffles for an hour before dipping. Once all fudge is rolled, melt the candy coating. Using a toothpick, dip each truffle into the melted chocolate, tap the side of the dish to let the excess run off, then set on a parchment lined baking sheet. Repeat for all truffles.


Pumpkin Pancakes

1 1/4 c. all-purpose flour
2 Tbsp. granulated sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. nutmeg
1/8 tsp. ground cloves
1 c. milk
6 Tbsp. pumpkin puree
2 Tbsp. melted butter
1 egg

Whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, ground ginger, salt, nutmeg and ground cloves. In a separate bowl, stir together milk, pumpkin puree, melted butter and egg. Fold mixture into dry ingredients. Spray non-stick cooking spray on griddle when hot and pour 1/4 cup batter per pancake. Cook pancakes about 3 minutes on each side. Serve with butter, syrup, walnuts or whipped topping.

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