Pumpkin, pumpkin, pumpkin

It’s been way too long since I’ve had time to write in my beloved blog…

BUT I’M BACK   😉

And I have three lovely recipes that are perfectly suited for the season 🙂 And, you can make ALL THREE RECIPES from one can of pumpkin puree, or one small baking pumpkin 🙂

Pumpkin Spice Lattes and Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins, like Starbucks makes & Pumpkin Bread topped with glazed walnuts/almonds 🙂

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Pumpkin Spice Lattes and Glazed Almond/Walnut Pumpkin Bread

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Pumpkin Cream Cheese muffins

Since I must give credit where credit is due [and credit is CERTAINLY due] I have provided here where I originally found the recipe for the Pumpkin Spice Lattes. They were absolutely fantastic! Chris and I had Pumpkin Spice Lattes from Starbucks and these were certainly comparable, without that icky, orange staining, pumpkin flavoring they use!

Pumpkin Spice Lattes Recipe

Pumpkin Spice Latte

Makes 2 servings

  • 1 level tablespoon pumpkin puree I used two for extra flavour
  • 1 cup milk (whole if you dare!)
  • 1/2 tablespoon light brown sugar (packed and leveled)
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp nutmeg (+ a pinch for dusting later) I used fresh nutmeg because that’s all I had and it was quite good!
  • 1/8 tsp ground cloves I omitted the cloves as I had none
  • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract I bumped this up to a whole tsp.
  • I also added a tsp. of Pumpkin Pie Spice
  • 2 cups strong coffee (brewed using 2 tbs per 1 cup of water)
    You can also use a shot or two of espresso instead of coffee, I wouldn’t recommend using instant coffee…ICK!
  • 4 tablespoons creamer
  • 4 to 8 teaspoons of granulated sugar I used maybe four, tops
  • Whipped cream
  1. Begin brewing coffee.

  2. In a blender puree the milk, pumpkin, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, pumpkin pie spice, brown sugar and vanilla.

  3. Pour into a small saucepan and cook over low heat until the milk is warm and begins to froth slightly. (About 4-5 minutes.) Remove from heat.

  4. For each serving: Pour 1/2 cup of the pumpkin mixture into your coffee mug. Add 2 generous tablespoons of creamer. Heat in the microwave for 30 seconds, then add 1 cup of brewed coffee. Add 2 to 4 teaspoons of sugar (depending on how sweet you like your drink, I added 3 tsps.) Top off with a touch more ‘pumpkin milk’ then cover with whipped cream and sprinkle with nutmeg. Serve immediately.

Pumpkin Bread & Cream Cheese Pumpkin Muffins

Makes 1 Loaf and 6 Muffins

  • 1 1/2 cups Pumpkin Puree or Fresh Pumpkin
  • 3/4 veg. oil
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 3 eggs, or 4 egg whites
  • 2 cups + 1/4 cup + 1/8 cup Flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 3/4 teaspoon fresh ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie Spice
  1. Pre-heat oven to 350. Grease and flour a glass loaf pan and prepare six muffin cups.

  2. In a large bowl mix pumpkin, oil, sugars and eggs. Also combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and pumpkin pie spice. Stir dry ingredients into pumpkin mixture until blended.

  3. Fill loaf pan half full and use remaining mixture for the prepared muffin cups. Top loaf with a a mixture of chopped almonds and walnuts, push down slightly so that some nuts are in the batter. For muffins use around a 1/4 cup of cream cheese. Divide into six portions and either roll into balls or shape into whatever design you prefer and sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon. Push cream cheese far into muffins as it rises while baking!

  4. Bake loaf for approximately 45 minutes to an hour or until top of loaf springs back when lightly pressed. Mix together a small amount of granulated sugar and water to form a glaze and pour over bread. Let cool, slice, and enjoy.

  5. Bake Muffins until toothpick inserted INTO MUFFIN comes out clean. Let cream cheese cool before eating as it becomes quite warm and could cause burning and would ruin the whole experience of these delicious muffins 🙂

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Michael Smith on Recipes <3

I enjoy sitting down to watch cooking shows every now and again to gain a new perspective on food.

It’s a simple and easy way to learn new ideas from world renowned chefs in the comfort of your own home.

One of my most favorite shows is by Chef Michael Smith, who taught me that recipes are just guidelines to be interpreted as you wish.

This knowledge has totally inspired me to walk into my kitchen, smell a certain spice or herb, and be able to create a whole meal based on that on smell alone.

It’s a wonderful feeling to be inspired by food. AND INVARIABLY INSPIRING OTHERS 😉

Sharing is caring, and in the words of Michael Smith from his amazing website: http://www.chefmichaelsmith.ca/en/home/Recipes/default.aspx

“Recipes are how one cook shares ideas with another cook!  They’re just words on paper; a guideline, a starting point from which to improvise so they don’t pretend to replace the practiced hand and telling glance of a watchful cook.”

And this is so incredibly true. Recipes are meant to be interpreted on your own terms and tailored to the tastes of you and your family. You could follow the “recipe directions” perfectly and still end up with a dish that just doesn’t do it for you. And that is why I suggest that you add the herbs, spices and flavorings of your choice when preparing the recipes that I provide here for you. Make them your own! Customize and tailor until YOU are happy with the finished product.

On his show “Chef at Home”, when providing the audience with a “recipe”, Michael never insists on exact measurements. Instead he states the ingredients used and shows you what happens as they cook. This is extremely advantageous for the audience as you see how the ingredients used look, when properly cooked and incorporated together. Again, from his website, here is MORE MICHAEL SMITH on recipes!

“For that reason, my recipes also describe what happens as you make them, so you’ll understand each step of the way. Of course the first time you cook one, it becomes yours, so feel free to personalize it a bit.  Add more of an ingredient you like or less of something you don’t like. Try substituting one ingredient for another. Remember words have no flavour, you have to add your own!”

This accurately describes my feelings on the topic as well. I really try and describe what is happening in my recipes so that you have an idea if you are on the right track. Words certainly do not have any flavor, so I take it upon myself to spice up every recipe I am providing with my own flair ❤ This is also why I only suggest to you recipes that I have tried and tested!!! It is much more useful for you, for me to provide you with helpful suggestions that I found along the way. I also only want to pass along the BEST of the BEST and that is why I don’t just post RANDOM recipes that may not have the best flavor, texture or consistency!!!!!!!!

Life gets so hectic sometimes that we really do forget to sit back and enjoy the simple things, like food…and family. Michael Smith is a chef, but a father and family man first and has this great outlook on enjoying food and creating in the kitchen with your family!!

“Family First: Sharing a meal with your family is one of the most powerful things you can do for each other. A strong family starts with individuals but grows with time together. Sit down and eat. Laugh, cry, share. Together you’re stronger than you are apart. Let your love for each other guide you to be your best in the kitchen.”

And I absolutely LOVE being in the kitchen with my family and hunny these days. The more you talk, the more you learn, and the more you learn, the more you grow ❤ It is so wonderful to prepare a lovely meal with family and friends and then to be able to sit down and enjoy it together. It is also so satisfying and gratifying to create something in the kitchen that pleases that taste buds and fill up the tummies of those you love ❤

So next time you think of heading out to a restaurant with your family, step into the kitchen instead and create something with your family. You’ll be glad you did ❤