Fall Bucket List

My favorite season is finally here and I’ve never been more excited! Now if only the temperature would stop getting into the 90s. (Yuck) Fall as a normal human being is fun, Fall as a mama to an adorable little babe, AMAZING! There are so many fun things to do during fall and I cannot wait to bring little Waylen along to start our own family traditions! Every year I love to create a bucket list of things I want to do so here’s mine for this year: 

  • Apple Picking at Apple Hill Orchard – CHECK!                                                           
  • Football, football and more football                                                   
  • Pumpkin Patch at Hodges Family Farm 
  • The Amazing Maize Maze
  • Hiking in the mountains
  • Costume Party 
  • Pumpkin Carving 
  • Make Pumpkin Cheesecake muffins (at least twice 😝) You can check out my recipe ➡️ HERE!

Of course it goes without saying that I will also be stocking up on all the Dunkin Donuts Pumpkin Coffee and Coffeemate Pumpkin Creamer I can get a hold of. Plus pumpkin beers, pies, muffins, cookies… can you tell your girl likes pumpkin?!? I would love to add more things to my list though so tell me all your favorite fall activities! 


(And yes I did photoshop Pickles into the photo. She had to go to the vet and couldn’t make it apple picking – I fully acknowledge I’m weird)

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It’s Pie Season! 

It’s that time of year again where you get to participate in the best type of marathon. The marathon of eating! Of course a much harder marathon comes first though. The marathon of cooking. (Ugh) Pies, turkey, stuffing, and about a million different casserole dishes are all combined to make the biggest meal of the year. I just love all the festive aromas that fill the house on Thanksgiving morning! 

This year Thanksgiving is a lot less fun for me since all of our belonging are packed up and ready to be moved to a storage unit. All I want to do is bake up some yummy and carb filled treats and then, of course stuff my mouth with them. I seriously planned on gaining a solid 4 pounds this weekend. That is now one hefty goal considering all the calories I will be burning moving our two bedroom apartment into storage. Frankly, I’m still up for the challenge.

With our couple friends up in Huntersville hosting a “Friendsgiving” again this year I cannot wait to taste what she (sorry John, we all know who did the cooking,) has cooked up! If it was anything like last year it will not disappoint! I do need to watch my turkey intake this year though. I can’t let that darn L-tryptophan get the best of me before the Panther’s play! – Ha just kidding, we all know I have no self-control when it comes to food. Thank goodness turkey doesn’t really put you to sleep or I’d probably be out cold!

Since I’m pretty limited on what I can make for Friendsgiving I decided to bake up my Great Grandma Bruster’s Pumpkin Pie. This recipe is my go-to around the holidays and is fairly simple. Growing up we used to make 4 pies just for my family of four. We would literally eat a slice for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, oh and of course the occasional snack. Clearly we were really healthy around the holidays… I’ve posted the recipe below for anyone who’s interested!

Grandma Bruster’s Pumpkin Pie:

Ingredients:

  •  1 cup can pumpkin
  •  1 large egg
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ¼ cup flour
  • ¼ t. ginger
  • 1 t. cinnamon
  • 1/8 t. nutmeg
  • 1 unbaked pie crust

Directions:

  1. First begin with preheating your oven to 400 degrees F and letting your pie crust come to room temperature
  2. In a medium bowl mix together spices, flour, and sugar
  3. In a large bowl whisk pumpkin and egg together and then stir in dry ingredient mixture    
  4. Gradually stir in milk to mixture making sure it is completely combined and then pour into pie shell. *I highly advice using crust protectors or tinfoil to keep your crust from burning.  
  5. Bake at 400 degrees F for 15 minutes and then reduce heat to 350 and continue baking for 1 hour.
  6. Cool for 2 hours and then refrigerate.   

I hope everyone has a Happy Thanksgiving and gets to eat lots of yummy foods! Be sure to take the time to really enjoy the day with your family and friends and be thankful for what you have! 

Pumpkin Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

I can’t even remember the last time I ate Pumpkin Seeds. I know as a child my family used to roast and eat them every year but then somewhere along the way I stopped and now they seem a little gross to me. Why? I literally have no idea so this year after watching The Kitchen on Food Network a few weeks back I was inspired to try them again.

The episode had three different recipes for roasting pumpkins seeds so I figured I would do this the right way and actually follow one instead of just winging it. I decided to try The Pumpkin Spiced and Sugar Recipe. I’m obviously obsessed with anything pumpkin these days so it only made sense to pick the recipe which added pumpkin spice to my pumpkin seeds. DUH! Anyways this is what you will need:

  • 2 cups raw pumpkin seeds
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon hot Hungarian paprika

Directions:

  1. First start by preheating your oven to 300 and lining a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. While that is heating up, it’s time to get messy! If you are using your Pumpkin for Halloween decorations, cut a lid out of the top and then scoop out seeds. (If not, it is much easier to just cut the pumpkin in half and scoop out the seeds!)
  3. Wash the seeds to remove the pumpkin’s flesh and strings then pat dry.
  4.  Add melted butter and maple syrup into a large bowl and toss in the pumpkin seeds  
  5. In a separate bowl stir together brown sugar, Pumpkin Pie spice, salt, and paprika.
  6. While mixing the pumpkin seeds, sprinkle dry mixture over to evenly coat.
  7. Spread the seeds onto the baking sheet making sure they are in a single layer. 
  8. Bake for 20 minutes, stirring and rotating the seeds halfway through.

The Verdict:

They were great! But then again I probably would eat anything coated with maple syrup and sugar. They were a little saltier then I expected so if you don’t like a lot of salt I would add less but I really enjoyed them! Would I make them again though? Yes! It was a quick and easy recipe to make and the result was a great balance of sweet, salty, pumpkin-y yumminess. I even caught Chappy sneaking a few handfuls.

Now I only wish I had tried more than one recipe! Maybe I’ll have to make another run to the Pumpkin Patch!

Pumpkin Season!!

It’s that time of year again where everything I eat, drink, smell, and do somehow revolves around pumpkins. I must admit I am a little pumpkin obsessed. Candles, coffee, creamer, breads, muffins, donuts, pasta, beer, and of course going to the pumpkin patch. Since moving from California to the East Coast my fall fixation has significantly grown. It is much more fun actually having a real excuse to pull out my boots and sweaters each year.

Now while of course I love to just enjoy all the yummy pumpkin-ness during fall, for me this also means stocking up on any and all things pumpkin. My ultimate goal is to have enough Dunkin Donuts Pumpkin Coffee and Coffee-Mate Pumpkin creamer to last me through winter. So far I am not even close to having enough. Especially since I single handily went through an entire K-cup box in the last 7 days. I seriously have no self-control!

Besides my sugary caffeine filled pumpkin addiction, my next favorite thing is to make my Pumpkin Cheesecake Mini Muffins. I came up with this recipe years ago when I decided to combine my Great Grandma Bruster’s Black Bottom Cupcakes and her Pumpkin Pie Recipes and they’ve been a hit ever since. Even my husband, who claims to hate cheesecake, has been caught shoveling down handfuls of these. I have learned to always make two batches if I want any to make it out of the house. No matter how many I make somehow there never seems to be enough!

What you will need:

Muffins:

  • 1 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 1/4 cup flour
  • 2 t. cinnamon
  • 1 t. baking soda
  • 1/2 t. salt
  • 3 eggs
  • 3/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin
  • 8 ounce package of cream cheese, softened

Crumble Topping:

  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/3 t. cinnamon
  • 3 T. flour
  • 2 T. chilled butter

Directions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Combine 1 cup of sugar, flour, cinnamon, baking soda, salt, 2 eggs, oil, and pumpkin in a mixing bowl. Mix until smooth then set aside.
  3. Beat together cream cheese, remaining sugar (1/3 cup), and 1 egg.
  4. In a separate bowl mix together the dry Crumble topping ingredients.
  5. Slice butter into pieces and using your hands work in the pieces until clumps form.
  6. Line muffin tins. (should make about 48 mini muffins.)
  7. Fill each muffin cup about 2/3 of the way full with the pumpkin mixture. Add a small spoonful of the cream cheese mixture to each muffin. Top with crumble.
  8. Bake for 12-15 minutes.

And now just try to resist eating the entire batch in one sitting!

Enjoy!

Mrs. Chappy