Tuesday, September 20, 2011

My Drool of the Week: PUMPKIN!!!


Adj. (pmpkn, pm-, png-)

1) Excellent; first-rate

2) Very attractive physically, etc

3) Marked by a lack of intelligence or care; foolish or careless

4) A lot of, existing in great quantity or ample supply. Enough to fill the orange vine fruit "Pumpkin", that is widely cultivated in early autumn.
"Grunngg has a pumpkin sports car of the mountains"

"Stoozies had a pumpkin time at the party."

"That ho be mad pumpkin."

"By selling my crack-cocaine I recieved apumpkin ammount of money."

"That ho made a pumpkin mistake when she crossed pimp daddy J-Silva."
2. pumpkin  

1-A hard and round vegetable of the squash family that usually comes in a bright orange color or also green and yellow depending on how ripe and grown it is.

-Usually used as food ie pie at Thanksgiving and as decoration ie Halloween (usually carved with some design, usually a face, which then gives it the name Jack-O-Lantern).

2-A term of endearment like sweetheart, which means to call a person cute or adorable or sweet in reference to the pleasing nostalgic look of the pumpkin vegetable.

-Commonly used towards females by males and to describe babies and children.
Ex1-The children are going on a school trip to the farm to pick pumpkins for Halloween.

Ex2-Aww look, that little pumpkin is dressed in a pumpkin custome for Trick or Treating!
3. pumpkin  

A word used for an adorable person, or one that you love.
My pumpkin called me last night!!!

Is it sad that the second dictionary entry that popped up on google for the word "pumpkin" was the Urban Dictionary ??? None the less, I did enjoy their interpretation of one of my most favorite words in the whole wide world. 
Today's drool is more decadent than decorative!...well, ironically it can be both! ...which is why pumpkins are the rockstars of the garden! Here are just a few of the many ways I love to enjoy this perfect fall specimen:

Not quite ready to dive head first into fall, but getting antsy for your first taste of pumpkin? Whip up a chillly pumpkin pie milkshake! Follow this great how-to provided by abeautifulmess. Her blog is awesome BTW!

Craving pumpkin before your feet even hit the floor? (Meeee tooooo!!!) This is a good way to use up a partial can of leftover pumpkin puree. There are lots of recipes out there that don't require the use of a whole can, and this is a yummy way to keep that pumpkin from going to waste!

Pumpkin Spice Pancakes
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1¼ cups all-purpose flour
2 tbsp. brown sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. salt
¾ tsp. ground cinnamon
¼ tsp. ground nutmeg
Dash of ground ginger
Dash of ground cloves
1 cup milk
½ cup pumpkin puree
1 large egg
2 tbsp. vegetable oil or melted butter
In a medium mixing bowl, combine the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, salt and spices and stir with a fork to combine.  Mix together the milk, pumpkin puree, egg and oil or butter in a liquid measuring cup.  Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and whisk together just until combine.  (The batter may still have a few lumps – that is okay.)
Preheat the oven to 200° F.  Have an oven safe plate or serving dish ready.  Heat a greased skillet or griddle over medium heat.  Once the skillet is hot, add a 1/3 cup scoop of batter to the pan.  Let cool until bubbles begin to form on the top surface.  Carefully flip with a spatula and cook the second side until golden brown, a couple minutes more.  Transfer the cooked pancake to the oven safe dish, and place in the oven to keep warm.  Repeat with the rest of the batter until it has all been cooked, regreasing the pan as needed.  Serve with cinnamon sugar, maple syrup, and/or whipped cream.
Source: adapted from Joy the Baker, originally from Martha Stewart

I wait for the Pumpkin Spice Latte to come out at Starbucks every year like a thirteen year old boy anxiously waits in line at the video game store for the latest release of C.O.D. (for those of you who do not know what C.O.D is...you are very fortunate. You either have a socially active teenager, or a semi attentive husband at home!) If you just can't get enough of your spiced latte at Starbuck's, you are going to love these cupcakes with light whipped cream topping. Let these Pumpkin Spiced Latte Cupcakes put a little pep in your step! Recipe provided by Annies Eats.

Pumpkin Spice Latte Cupcakes
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Yield: about 2 dozen cupcakes
For the cupcakes:
2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
3 tbsp. espresso powder
2 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp. grated nutmeg
1/8 tsp. ground cloves
1 tsp. salt
1 (15 oz.) can pumpkin puree
1 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup canola or vegetable oil
4 large eggs
½ cup coffee or espresso, for brushing
For the whipped cream:
2¼ cups heavy cream, chilled
¼ cup confectioners’ sugar
For garnish:
Ground cinnamon
Caramel sauce
To make the cupcakes, preheat the oven to 350°F.  Line cupcake pans with paper liners.  In a medium bowl, combine the flour, espresso powder, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and salt.  Stir together and set aside.  In the bowl of an electric mixer, blend together the pumpkin, granulated sugar, brown sugar and oil. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.  With the mixture on low speed, add the flour mixture in two additions, mixing just until incorporated.
Fill the cupcake liners about three-quarters full.  Bake until the cupcakes are golden and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 18-20 minutes.  Transfer the pans to a wire rack and let cool for 10 minutes, then remove the cupcakes from the pans.  While the cupcakes are still warm, brush them two or three times with the coffee or espresso, allowing the first coat to soak in before repeating.  Let cool completely.
To make the frosting, place the heavy cream in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment.  Whip on medium-low speed at first, gradually increasing to high speed.  Blend in the confectioners’ sugar gradually.  Whip until stiff peaks form, being careful not to over-beat.  Use a pastry bag fitted with a decorative tip to frost the cooled cupcakes.  Sprinkle with ground cinnamon and drizzle with caramel sauce.  Store in an airtight container and refrigerate.
Source: cake adapted from Williams Sonoma

Ok, health nuts, this one's for you! I have to admit, I usually am not a fan of oatmeal. I begrudgingly choke it down some mornings just to feel like I am making a half hearted attempt at healthy living. But you slap a little pumpkin in anything, and I am good to go! This recipe is packed with fiber and flavor. Turn a bland bowl of oatmeal into a slice of pumpkin heaven.

Pumpkin Pie Oatmeal Recipe
1 1/2 cups light vanilla-flavored soy milk (Silk brand, for example)
1 cup uncooked quick oats
1/2 cup previously cooked or canned pumpkin puree
Pumpkin pie spice to taste (or cinnamon and nutmeg to taste)
Brown sugar to taste
Optional: nuts, raisins
Directions: In a saucepan, bring soy milk just to a boil and stir in oats, pumpkin and spice. Reduce heat and simmer a few minutes, stirring once or twice until oats are cooked. Remove from heat and pour into bowls. Sprinkle with brown sugar and additional toppings, if desired. Serves two.
Note: You can use pumpkin pie filling if you prefer, but the sugar content will be significantly higher. Leave out the sugar and seasonings if you use pie filling for your oatmeal.

I love pumpkin in my tummy, but pumpkin curtains are just as yummy! www.apartmenttherapy.com

Use shades of orange in your home accents. It's still a very earthy, nature inspired color, but it packs a color punch that some other "expected" earth tones can lack. Use pumpkin inspired tones to add warmth and interest to a room in your home! Get tired of it later? or want a different look seasonally? Note how the fixed elements in this room are fairly neutral and versatile. The curtains, floral arrangement, and whatever pretty drapey thing is thrown on the bench can easily be changed out with another color, say yellow maybe, for the warmer months.
These big, plush pillows remind me of pumpkins! Again, shades of orange add warmth, depth, and interest to a neutral space. Easy to change on a whim! designedtothenines  

These orange end tables are super fun! When picking bold color for furniture pieces, be sure to test several different shades of your preferred color. Sometimes bold colors like orange and red can turn our paler/creamier than you want or they can be much more intense than you intended. The last thing you want is an end table that screams "GO BIG ORANGE!" when you were really thinking more harvest pumpkin. (that's a University of Tennessee reference for those lucky few of you who are not familiar with their color scheme, put on your sunglasses, google UT Fans and sit back and enjoy the disappointment.)
You can even accessorize your little punkin with cute punkin hats! What baby wouldn't look adorable in this hat??? littlebirdiesecrets.blogspot.com

Check out Slatkin and Co.'s wide variety of pumpkin scented products to infuse your whole home with pumpkiny bliss. They have candles, wall plug-ins, oils, and rooms sprays in fabulous falls fragrances. Or you can buy them directly at your local Bath and Body Works store! www.bathandbodyworks.com

 I hope I have given you some inspiring and indulgent ways to enjoy pumpkin this fall! I think pumpkins are the next best thing since sliced bread. They look beautiful, taste yummy, smell even yummier, can be carved, color matched for home decor, and probably snatched off of your front porch at 2 in the morning and smashed in the road by bored teenagers who have no respect for pumpkins or your fabulous fall display that you spent precious time and moolah on in the hopes that it would bring joy to all who pass by your house, wishing that they too could be a craft diva like you. . . sigh. . . sorry, had to get that off my chest. Stupid teenagers. Anyhowwwwww, I hope you enjoy your pumpkins however you please! Now I am off to Starbuck's for my pumpkin fix. Hooray!!!!

1 comment:

Jenny Williams said...

Hey! Good post Laura! Here is a recipe from Dr. Axe's website for pumpkin blueberry pancakes- they are uber healthy and sooo good! http://www.draxe.com/recipe/pumpkin-blueberry-pancakes/

Also, I LOVE the ceiling of the first room pic from apartmenttherapy!!