Saturday, November 28, 2009

Homemade Pumpkin Pie

This was the first year that I tried making pumpkin pie from scratch. I've always made my own pastry and mixed together the filling, but I've typically used canned pumpkin. I roasted a sugar or pie pumpkin a few weeks ago, pureed the cooked pumpkin and kept it in the freezer until a few days before Thanksgiving. I used Martha Stewart's "Classic Pumpkin Pie" recipe for the filling and used homemade pastry and made an oak leaf pattern around the edge with the extra pastry. It was well worth it as the flavor was fantastic, especially served along with pumpkin whip cream.

My Favourite Thanksgiving Sides

It was a quiet and peaceful Thanksgiving dinner this year. We stayed home (which we realized hadn't done in about five years) and made a simple meal for just us and my mum. The turkey turned out perfectly, but the stuffing wasn't the greatest this year (which Sean admitted to me). I need to stick to the recipe I've used in the past! However, my favourite side dishes this year were the ever so sweet potato casserole topped with golden marshmallows (which Audrey loved!) and the sauteed brussel sprouts with pancetta.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Butternut Squash Bisque

There is this Amish farm stand in mid-Michigan that I always like to visit and get food when I'm visiting my mum. I get my maple syrup and eggs from them and this time of year they always have a bountiful selection of pumpkins, gourds and all kinds of squash. This year, I bought nearly a dozen squash and my favourite is still butternut. Each autumn I make this butternut squash bisque and it's the most comforting soup for a gray fall day like today. For this recipe, I used four squash and roasted them cut sides up draped with pancetta. The squash soaks in all the flavor from the pancetta and then I reserve the pancetta to cut up and sprinkle on top to serve. It's such a perfect combination of savoury and sweet. I have just one squash left from my trip to the Amish farm stand and I plan to use it for Thanksgiving. Audrey tried squash for the first time recently and loves it too!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

The Best Autumn Bread

Several years ago, I found an apple bread recipe to try when I had a bunch of extra apples in the fall. We instantly loved it and it has turned out to be a family favorite. In fact, I recently cut up extra apples so I could make it for my brother this weekend as he's the one that always requests it. The recipe makes two large loaves and I often times make one large loaf and two mini ones so I can send them home with people. It always reminds me of autumn and is the best with a cup of hot cider or tea. Sugar and spice and everything nice!

Homemade Teething Biscuits

Of any baby I've been around the past year, I have the biggest teether out there. Audrey started getting teeth at only 4 months and she has almost all of them at 13 months! I found a simple recipe for homemade teething biscuits that involves just four natural ingredients to make these yummy sweet biscuits. Using a "donut" shaped cookie cutter and taking out the middle makes them easy for her to hold onto as well. One of the best things is that it takes her a good 15 minutes or so to finish one so I have time to clean up after a meal and do the dishes while she enjoys it. You should see her face when she sees I'm bringing her one - a big dimply smile!