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Monday, August 23, 2010

Pumpkin meets pancake and oh, something to tell you...

Third pumpkin recipe: Pancakes. Pumpkin in pancakes. A little strange huh? But totally delicious. I came across the recipe when I was browsing through one of my favourite blogs,  Joy The Baker. She really is great.
She found the recipe from Martha Stewart which can be found here.

A few friends came over to eat them with me. They were skeptical of the pumpkin in a pancake too before they had their first was I. But they were so yum! A must try by all. Do it.

My pumpkin is shrinking fast:

And in other news...

In case you didn't quite catch that, that's a ring on my finger. My ring finger that is. YES, the boy popped the question and now we're engaged! I've been dying to tell you but had to wait until all the fam-dam, and close friends knew first.

So I'm a tad bit excited at the moment. You'll have to excuse my giddiness for a wee while, because I think it's going to linger for some time until the excitement wears off. Yippeee, wedding plans here we come!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Pumpkin and Date Muffins

The other night I was lying on the couch flicking through AAW: BAKE, when my flatmate said: "So, do you usually read cook books for fun?" To which I replied, "I don't read them all the time..."

I think I may have an obsession with food and cook books. Please tell me reading through cook books in not geeky? Ok, so it may be a little geeky. Which means I must be a little bit of a geek. Thats okay. I can deal with that. Maybe its time for all the Sneans-wearers out there to stop hogging all the geekiness share a little with us. Yes, you too. I'm sure we're all geeky in our own way. Don't deny it. 

In fact, if it wasn't for flicking through AAW I wouldn't have got the idea for my next pumpkin recipe:  Muffins. Pumpkin and Date muffins that is. I know you're thinking I could have come up with that on my own, as muffins don't sound too adventurous, BUT its been a while since I made these and whoa did I miss them.
And for all those fussy 'dater's' our there, you don't have to use them but could substitute chocolate, or raisins, or nuts, or anything that tickles your fancy. Here they are:

Pumpkin and Date Muffins

2 cup plain flour                    1 egg
1/4 soft brown sugar             1 cup mashed pumpkin
3 tsp baking powder             1/2 cup yoghurt/milk
1 tsp cinnamon                     1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp nutmeg                      1/4 Canola oil
1/2 cup dates, chopped

Pre-heat fan forced oven to 190 degrees Celsius. Grease a muffin pan (mini, medium or large).

Sift together the flour, baking powder, and spices into a bowl. Add sugar and stir together with a whisk or fork to aerate the mixture. 

In a separate large bowl, slightly beat the egg. Add the pumpkin, yoghurt/milk, vanilla and oil. Mix to combine. 

Gently fold the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, being careful not to over mix. 

Spoon mixture into prepared pan. Bake for 20 minutes or until cooked through.

Served warm for breakfast with yoghurt and a drizzle of maple syrup is pre-tty tasty, or as a snack, or whenever your taste buds would like to savour a sweet, soft, fluffy pumpkin goodness. 

So there we have it. About 2/5ths of pumpky gone. What will be next? Not too sure yet. Stay tuned to find out.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

How many ways with a Pumpkin?

Oh pumpkin, oh pumpkin, how I love you. You're versatile, you're delicious, and you're...CHEAP.

I was going to do my usual half -a-pumpkin purchase when I decided to branch out and buy a whole pumpkin. I know, big deal right? - A whole pumpkin. This baby was a whopping $2.49. Not as cheap as the Vege Markets, but still pretty cheap huh?

This pumpky got me pondering. Just how many things could one make with a whole pumpkin? I thought I'd put it to the test and keep you posted in the process.

I started tonight by making this: which used about 1/8th of the pumpkin.

I know, I know, mashed pumpkin reminds me of baby food too. BUT, it was scrummy. Especially with the additional dollop of maple syrup added in the end...

So there we have it. About 1/8th of my pumpkin gone.

That's still a lot of pumpkin left to create some more pumpkin deliciousness. Yusss.

p.s. I think this must be the first savoury meal I have posted on my blog. Fancy that?

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Chocolate Lace Crisps

It was the daintiness of the title that attracted me to making these 'crisps'. A crisp biscuit that would perhaps be served on fine china-ware for a special afternoon tea. I didn't have a special afternoon tea to attend, but I did have one of these tasty crisps to eat at afternoon tea time. They were crunchy, delicate and a little decadent.

The recipe is from the Australian's Women's Weekly "BAKE" cookbook. I bought this a few months ago and love it. It has it all.

Here is the recipe for these little dainty gems:

100g dark cooking chocolate, chopped
80g butter, chopped
1 cup (220g) caster sugar
1 egg
1 cup (150g) pain flour
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
1/4 (40g) icing sugar

1. Melt chocolate and butter in small saucepan over low heat.
2. Transfer chocolate mixture to medium bowl: stir in caster sugar, egg, sifted flour, cocoa and soda. Cover: Refrigerate 15 minutes or until mixture is firm enough to handle.
3. Pre-heat oven to 180/160 degrees Celsius fan-forced. Grease oven trays: Line with baking paper.
4. Roll level tablespoons of mixture into balls, roll each ball in sifted icing sugar.

Pace about 8cm apart (they grow big) on trays.

5. Bake crisps about 15 minutes, cool on trays.

Makes about 20

Mmm afternoon tea delights.