Posts Tagged ‘autumn’

Pumpkin Spice Pancakes

Fall is one of my favorite seasons of the year and this past week Fall has finally arrived in Virginia. We don’t get much Fall color here when compared to the more northern states but some of the trees are the most beautiful shades of red, orange and yellows. There are a lot of perfect days this time of year, and to me, perfect means the crisp, cool air with the still warm sun and the most amazing deep blue sky. There are Fall festivals on the weekends with pumpkins, music, hayrides, arts and crafts and more pumpkins. Which brings me to my subject for this recipe….pumpkin ūüėÄ

Making Pumpkin Spice Pancake Batter

If you follow my blog, you’ll know that I absolutely adore pumpkin. I have on occasion tried pumpkin pancakes in restaurants but it has always been a bit disappointing, too much ginger, not enough cinnamon, too greasy…you get the picture. So I decided to try my hand at making home-made pumpkin pancakes and this version did not disappoint. In my opinion, there is just the right combination of spices and when served with warm Maple syrup, they are to die for. These Pumpkin Spice Pancakes are already on my “Top 5” favorite pumpkin recipes list.

Pumpkin Spice Pancakes (makes 7 pancakes)


1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour (5 1/2 oz. or 155 grams)

2 tablespoons dark brown sugar

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

2 dashes of ground cloves

1 cup milk

1/2 cup pumpkin puree

1 large egg

2 tablespoons vegetable oil


In a medium bowl mix all dry ingredients together using a fork to ensure there are no clumps of brown sugar. In a separate bowl mix together milk, pumpkin puree, egg and vegetable oil. Using a whisk combine wet ingredients with dry ingredients and whisk only until combined.

Heat a small greased pan to medium heat. Pour 1/3 cup batter onto hot pan and fry until air bubble form on top surface. Flip pancake and cook the second side until golden brown. If desired, keep pancakes warm in oven (200 degrees F) until ready to serve. Enjoy with warm Maple syrup.

Source: adapted from Annie’s Eats

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Ghost Pretzels

Halloween is almost here and I wanted to sneak in one more Halloween themed post. These Ghost Pretzels are fun and very easy to make and they bring a smile to the faces of children and adults alike. I brought these with me to my husbands Blacksmith demo in Driver, Virginia and they were all gobbled down by the hungry Blacksmiths.

Driver Days

Driver Days is a Fall festival in Suffolk, Virginia and it’s an event which I look forward to each year. Driver is a wonderful, quaint little town which manages to put on a great event every October. There’s good music, arts and crafts for sale, fun activities for the kids, a classic car show, cute Blacksmiths which smile at you (ok, so that’s my husband smiling at me) and lots of good food and baked goods.

Back to the Ghost Pretzels. Of couse there is no real recipe for making the Ghost Pretzels so I feel a little silly posting one. But that’s what foodies do, they photograph and post recipes for everything, so here goes.


1 bag of pretzel rods

14 oz bag of Vanilla flavored Candy Wafers (or white chocolate morsels)

edible ink marker


Melt white chocolate over a warm water bath or in the microwave. Pour melted chocolate into a tall thin glass and dip pretzel rods into chocolate. Place pretzel rods onto parchment paper or stand up in a cup to allow white chocolate to dry. Once chocolate has hardened draw faces using an edible ink marker (which can be found at local craft and baking stores as well as online).

Source: Savory Sweet Life, originally from PBS Parents

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Pumpkin Smoothie

Pumpkin Smoothie

Fall is¬†filled with beautiful colors, cool air, baked goods and lots of pumpkins. And so here is another pumpkin recipe that I wanted¬†to share with you. It’s a¬†wonderful Pumpkin Smoothie and it can be made with either vanilla yogurt or milk for a thinner version, either way it’s super delicious. If your making it with yogurt I would recommend using a regular yogurt instead of a greek yogurt to avoid that sometimes¬†“dry after-taste” you notice with greek yogurt.

I hope you are enjoying this beautiful¬†season as much as I am. ūüôā

Pumpkin Smoothie


1/2 cup canned pumpkin

6 oz vanilla yogurt or 3/4 cup milk

1/4 tsp cinnamon

2 tsp light brown sugar

4 ice cubes


Combine all ingredients in a blender and puree until smooth. Pour smoothie into a tall glass and decorate with a dollop of vanilla yogurt or chipped cream and a sprinkle of cinnamon. Enjoy!

Source: slightly adapted from familyfun.go.com

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Whoopie Pumpkien Pies

Whoopie Pumpkien Pies

Fall is quickly approaching and I am starting to see pumpkins and Halloween decorations all over the place. If you follow my blog then you know that I am a huge pumpkin fan. I love everything pumpkin…pumpkin pie, pumpkin bread, pumpkin cookies and now…Whoopie Pumpkin Pies. I found these little babies in Food Network Magazine and the recipe moved straight to the top of my very long “to do” list. (Do you notice how these “to do” lists never get any shorter) Anyway, these Whoopie pies are wonderful!

When I was making the cookie batter I got a little worried because, after I added the buttermilk, it looked like the batter was starting to separate. But once I started adding the dry ingredients everything came together beautifully, so no need to worry. Also, the flavor of the filling slowly intensifies so these can easily be made a day in advance. I wrapped each cookie in plastic wrap to keep them fresh and to prevent them from sticking together, then in a large Tupperware container and into the refrigerator. I also took half of the finished cookies and stuck them in the freezer. It turns out that they freeze really well, just let them thaw in the refrigerator. I hope you enjoy these babies as much as we have.

Whoopie Pumpkin Pies

Whoopie Pumpkin Pies


For the cookies:

1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 1/4 cups granulated sugar

1 large egg

1 cup buttermilk, at room temperature

1 tsp pure vanilla extract

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour

3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

1 1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp baking powder

Pinch of kosher salt

For the filling:

4 oz cream cheese, at room temperature

4 tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature

2/3 cup confectioners sugar

1/4 cup canned pure pumpkin

1/4 tsp ground cinnamon

Pinch of kosher salt


Line three baking sheets with parchment paper. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

To make the cookies: In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and salt, set aside. Using a stand mixer, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg, then the buttermilk and vanilla. Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, mixing just until combined.

Drop 2 tablespoons of batter for each cookies to be made, onto prepared baking sheet, spacing batter 3 inches apart. Bake until edges are set but the cookies are still soft, about 8 minutes. Remove from oven and let cookies cool on baking sheet for 2 minutes, then transfer cookies to a baking rack and cool completely.

To make the filling: Beat cream cheese and butter with a mixer until smooth. Slowly beat in the confectioners sugar. Add the pumpkin, cinnamon and salt and beat until smooth.

To assemble the cookies, spread a heaping tablespoon filling onto the flat side of one cookie and sandwich with another cookie. Repeat with remaining cookies. Enjoy.

Source: Food Network Magazine, The Neelys’

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Pumpkin Bars With Hazelnut Cream

Pumpkin Bars With Hazelnut Cream

I heard there is a Pumpkin shortage. A couple of weeks ago, there was no pumpkin to be found anywhere (believe me I looked) but now the stores are fully stocked. So do we have a shortage or did we just get off to a slow start? In any case, I am very happy to see pumpkin on the shelves again and now I can finally get started with my fall baking.

To me, Pumpkin is one of those types of food that is an acquired taste. I really didn’t care for it when I first came to the States but as time have gone by, not only do I like it, I completely love it. Not that pumpkin itself has much flavor but when seasoned correctly it become¬†very delicious.

These pumpkin bars are light and moist all at the same time, and extremely tasty. I like them plain with no topping at all, but if you like a little topping with it, then the hazelnut/cinnamon cream compliments it very nicely. I hope you enjoy these Pumpkin Bars.

Pumpkin Bars

Pumpkin Bars With Hazelnut Cream

Ingredients for Pumpkin Bars: 

4 large eggs

1 2/3 cups granulated sugar

3/4 cup vegetable oil

15 ounce can pumpkin

2 cups all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking soda

Ingredients for Hazelnut Cream:

1 1/2 cup whipping cream

3 – 3 1/2 tablespoon Hazelnut Liqueur

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9 x 13 inch pan and set aside.

In a large bowl combine eggs, sugar, oil and pumpkin. Mix on medium speed until blended well. Sift together flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt and baking soda. Add dry ingredients to the pumpkin mixture and mix on low-speed until batter is smooth. Spread batter into greased pan and bake for 30 minutes. Insert a toothpick into center of cake, toothpick should come out clean if cake is done. Let cool completely before cutting into bars.

To make Hazelnut Cream: Add Hazelnut liqueur in increments and taste as you go to see how mild or strong you like the mixture. In a small bowl combine whipping cream, Hazelnut liqueur and cinnamon. Beat until mixture starts to thicken and beaters leave tracks in cream. Serve on top of Pumpkin Bars, if you like. Enjoy!

Source: adapted from Paula Deen, originally by Patty Ronning


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