pumpkin

Baking & Real Estate II

I finally have a bit of time to write, since I've been organizing, staging, photographing, and polishing our condo for the market. We've gotten nothing but stellar feedback on our stylish pad - now if only we could get a couple of keen buyers and a friendly little bidding war, that would be really sweet!

Everything I've read about staging a home talks about the importance of good smells. With all the fresh flowers and baking that goes on here, our place smells great. Since one's place should be spotless all the time when it's on the market, I lean towards easy recipes that don't involve too many bowls, utensils, or appliances. I often bake half of the cookies from a recipe (and store the other half of the batter in the fridge) and bake the rest another day to save time and effort. I've been avoiding baking peanut-butter cookies on the off chance that someone with a nut allergy comes through. I use high quality Mexican vanilla and cinnamon in everything for the best flavour and aroma. Things I've been baking:

Sweet Ambrosia Cookies
These are quick and easy to make - you can mix everything by hand in one bowl. Coconut and pecans add lovely complimentary fragrances.

Tahini Oatmeal Walnut Cookies
Another delicious easy one bowl concoction. Add 1tsp of vanilla to make these even more fragrant.

Patty's Pumpkin Pudding
Tis the season for these aromatic winter squash baked delights. The higher quality the spice, the better the bouquet! I throw all the ingredients in a blender to make prep and clean-up quick and easy.

Wish us luck!

Patty's Pumpkin Pudding Pie

They say that the smell of pumpkin pie baking in the oven is an aphrodisiac. They also say that it's good to bake one while you're having having an open-house to sell your home - chances of scoring are higher. I bake them often in the fall and winter, as they're the perfect seasonal dish (winter squash is one of the few vegetables that will keep for months), and they're supremely delicious.

Most days, I prefer making variations of this pumpkin pudding to a traditional pumpkin pie. Why? Because it's healthier (no refined ingredients or empty calories), quicker and easier to make - and I'm more into the filling than the crust. Here's my quintessential recipe: Patty's Pumpkin Pudding

Like a clafouti, this pudding makes it's own "crust" and is sliceable when cooled down. Beautifully spiced and rich, it can be embellished with a layer of crunchy caramelized nuts. This is an easy and flexible recipe where you can play with the ingredients and their proportions - so have some warm sexy winter baking fun!

ps - here are some tips on how-to take a classic pumpkin pie recipe and make it healthier - without compromising flavour: Hi there pumpkin pie!

not too long ago...

beautiful butter-pecan pumpkin tart

a beautiful butter-pecan pumpkin tart on a sunny fall day

It's dark. It's cold. It's winter. I came across this sunny fall photo of the butter-pecan pumpkin tart I made this past Thanksgiving and it cheered me up :-)

Pumpkin ____?

Winter Squash Nut-Crust Casserole
Very delicious: a sweet winter squash nut-crust pumpkin pie-like baked good.

Pumpkin pudding, pumpkin pie, nut-crust pumpkin pie, self-crusting pumpkin pie, pumpkin squares, sweet squash pie, winter squash nut-crust casserole...

Name or no name, I make these very often in the fall and winter. The piece in the picture has a pecan-pepita crust: very very very good!

As for a recipe - I generally wing it every time. I have posted some tips here: Hi there pumpkin pie! I will post an approximate recipe...

UPDATE: here's that recipe! Patty's Pumpkin Pudding

Hi there pumpkin pie!

A sugar pumpkin - perfect for pies! image from Cook's Thesaurus

I absolutely love pumpkin pie. There are thousands of pumpkin pie recipes on the web - but most are loaded with superfluous fat and sugar. Winter squash is a magical thing, and has its own lovely richness. Here are some tips on how to make a classic recipe healthier, without compromising flavour and texture of course!