Posts Tagged ‘Fall’
I can’t believe it is already October. It’s been raining off and on since Monday which signals the start of the California winter season. Time to break out the fuzzy socks and pumpkin lattes! Living in California pre Domingo I never got excited about the change of season. Since then, my husband’s love of fall has rubbed off on me. We’re still a new family, but we’ve already formed some traditions.
I always try a new recipe using pumpkin for my husband, as well as make some of his favorite pumpkin treats from past years. Pumpkin is his favorite flavor, from pumpkin spiced lattes at Starbucks, to pumpkin muffins. I’m not a huge fan of pumpkin, and Domingo likes thinking of it as a special treat, so we rarely make pumpkin anything at any other time in the year.
In mid November we cook a mini-thanksgiving meal for just the two of us and Lily, our kitty. We spend the day cooking in the kitchen, together. Since it’s just the two of us, we stick to the basics: turkey breast, stuffing (following my mom’s recipe), cranberry sauce, asparagus, and mashed potatoes. Lily gets her annual can of tuna. It’s a lot of food, but the left over’s keep well and are just so yummy! Our mini thanksgiving is a chance to try out new recipes and I experiment with a new fall themed dessert. If the desert works out, I make another for Thanksgiving with our extended family. Otherwise, I go back to a tried and true recipe. (My mother in law things I’m a great cook, in part because she never finds out about my failures *wink*.)
Not surprisingly, some of our traditions center around shopping. We both love to shop and save money, and when can one do that better than the season that has Black Friday? We go usually spend some time leading up to Black Friday “gathering intel” as my husband would say. You can tell what will go on sale on Black Friday by looking around at the inventory. Target especially keeps excess stock in the shelves above the aisles. If they suddenly have 200 of a particular type of vacuum, you can bet it will likely be a sale. We really enjoy our shopping trips together. No one can make me laugh like he can.
Before you know it, it’s already winter. In honor of the first holiday in fall, I redesigned my blog.
It’s October and time to break out the pumpkin! Pumpkin cupcakes that is. I found the recipe for pumpkin cupcakes online a few years ago. I think I may have changed the recipe slightly. The cake batter recipe was my own idea and invention. I wanted an icing that had a doughy kind of taste (like the crust of a pie) but a little sweeter. It’s not a very exciting recipe, but it is the first recipe I came up with on my own. The idea to decorate the cupcakes to look like little pies came from the book Hello, Cupcake!.
- 2 1/4 cups flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1 1/3 cups sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup canned pumpkin
- 3/4 cup milk
In a medium sized bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, ginger, cinnamon, and nutmeg into a bowl.
In large bowl cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat eggs until frothy, combine with butter & sugar.
Blend in mashed pumpkin. Alternate between stirring in the dry ingredients and the milk, blending until batter is smooth.
I fill the cupcake tray 1/2 full instead of 2/3rds so I don’t get the cupcake top, and the cupcake is more pie shaped. Bake at 375° for 25 minutes.
The secret to the cake batter taste is a touch of anise. I add 1 teaspoon of butter extract and 1/4th teaspoon of anise extract. Anise has a licorice like flavor, so add very little to not overpower the vanilla and butter. The butter extract gives it that nice buttery taste (like dough). I used like half a drop of red food coloring, and 3ish drops of yellow to give it a batter-like color.
- 1 Cup unsalted butter
- 3 cups confectioners sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon butter extract
- 1/4 teaspoon anise extract
- 2 tablespoons milk
Beat butter on medium speed until creamy. Add sugar slowly, mixing it in with the butter. Add extracts, salt and milk. If your frosting is too thick for your tastes, add a touch more milk. If your frosting is too thin, add more sugar.
To get half a drop of red icing, I typically insert a toothpick into the food coloring container, and then wipe said toothpick on the icing to transfer a tiny amount of food coloring.