Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Fall Favourites

Fall is my favourite season. Or it was, until I moved to Vancouver where we don't really get many of those crisp cool days or colourful leaves. But the season still lives on in my mind! And this week the weather has actually felt like a New England autumn here, so it has put me in the mood for some fall favourites.

I love pumpkin anything, and its just what I wanted this week to celebrate the autumnal weather.

While all the world seems to be soaking up Pumpkin Spice Lattes for nearly $5 a cup, I have been incorporating real pumpkin in the kitchen instead!

While we are on the topic - have you seen what's in that latte? Oh wait- that's right, they don't actually disclose ingredients! But they do give you the nutritional info, and I am sure you will not be surprised to learn that this is not exactly a healthy addition to your daily routine.

Try some of these more wholesome ideas for getting a little fall flavour into your diet!

Pumpkin Oatmeal
  • 1 cup old fashioned rolled oats
  • 1 Tbs whole flax seeds, optional
  • 3 1/2 tsp pureed dates (puree in food processor with a little hot water)
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp allspice
  • 1/8 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp lemon zest
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 tsp butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup pumpkin puree
  • 3/4 cup milk

Topping:

  • 1/4 cup pecans, chopped
  • 2 tsp butter, softened
  • a little more pureed dates

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Grease 4 individual sized ramekins. Set aside.

Combine the oats through salt in a medium sized bowl. Stir well. In a separate bowl, combine the vanilla, butter, pumpkin, and milk. Whisk thoroughly. Pour the pumpkin mixture into the oats. Stir until combined.

Divide mixture evenly between 4 individual sized ramekins. Place ramekins on a baking sheet (this makes it easier to move in and out of the oven.). Bake at 375 degrees F for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, combine the ingredients for the topping. After the oatmeal has baked for 10 minutes, remove and divide topping mixture evenly between the ramekins. Bake and additional 7 minutes. Cool for 5 minutes before serving. Top with a splash of milk and raisins, if desired.


Spiced Pumpkin Bread

  • 2 cups honey, maple syrup, agave nectar or pureed dates
  • 1 cup unrefined coconut oil, slightly warmed until liquid
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 16-ounce can solid pack pumpkin
  • 3 cups whole wheat flour - or other grain flour of choice
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 cup coarsely chopped walnuts (optional)
  • 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds (optional)

  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter and flour two 9x5x3-inch loaf pans. Beat sugar and oil in large bowl to blend. Mix in eggs and pumpkin. Sift flour, cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda, salt and baking powder into another large bowl. Stir into pumpkin mixture in 2 additions. Mix in walnuts, if desired.


    Divide batter equally between prepared pans. Bake until tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 1 hour 10 minutes. Transfer to racks and cool 10 minutes. Using sharp knife, cut around edge of loaves. Turn loaves out onto racks and cool completely.




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