Pumpkin Month

There are many reasons why I love the fall. The colors, smells and cooler weather. (That’s saying a lot from a girl who would never leave a summer beach if given the option.) I especially love pumpkin! There is always pumpkin pie, but also muffins, pancakes, cookies, tea cake, pumpkin spice lattes and so much more. I was almost giddy when I saw the large cans of pumpkin at Costco.

I do realize that you can purchase canned pumpkin throughout the year. I usually have a couple of cans in my pantry. However, it tastes so much better in the fall. I figure I really only have two months to enjoy it; October and November. September is still summer in Virginia, and by December 1st I am ready to dive into gingerbread. Yum!

There have been a few recipes on Pinterest involving canned pumpkin and a box of cake mix. I looked at a couple and came up with my own for

Very Simple & Quick Pumpkin Spice Muffins

Ingredients:

1 Can Pumpkin (A regular size can is usually 15 or 16.5 oz. I had a giant can, so I just measured it out. Also, use the plain canned pumpkin, not the pumpkin pie mix.)

1 Box of Spice Cake Mix

That’s it! I told you it was easy. Combine the pumpkin and cake mix in a bowl until combined. It will be thicker than cupcake batter. You can always add a bit of milk or water to thin it out.

This would be the time to add any mix-ins. I didn’t add anything to mine, but nuts, raisins, or chocolate chips would be good. When I bake muffins in the fall and winter, I like to add flax meal.

Fill muffin tins about 3/4 full. I used cupcake liners that were left over from a birthday party, but you can also spay the pan. A box mix is supposed to make 24 cupcakes, but I was about 3 short. I like to fill my muffin tin up.

Follow the instructions on the box for baking. It’s usually 18-10 minutes at 350.

Let cool and enjoy! I topped mine with a little powdered sugar.

Keep an eye out for more posts on pumpkin (I’m going to live it up!) this fall. I’ve got some more ideas to use up all of that pumpkin.

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It’s a “Corona-rita” Kind of Night

My husband spent last week in San Antonio, Texas for a conference. One night at dinner, he had a Corona-rita with his dinner. He knew it was a drink that I would like to try.

Tonight, the Seahawks are playing on Thursday Night Football. With no work for either of us tomorrow (Yeah!), I can try to stay up for most of the game. So, my dear husband, who does not support the Seahawks (he’s a Green Bay fan), but will join me in my team spirit (when we’re not playing his team) and call it a “date night,” suggested we have Corona-ritas tonight. That sounded great to me!!!

So here it is. My “Corona-rita!”

Doesn’t it look delicious! It was! Here’s how we made it.

Ingredients:

1 Can Frozen Limeade Concentrate

1 Can Water

1 Can Sprite

1/2 Can Tequila

Add these to a pitcher and mix. You should do a good mixing before adding the Sprite. You don’t want any carbonation explosions.

Grind/Slush Ice and add to glass.

Full glass half-full of the “rita” mix. (If you fill it up more, you will have a “Corona-rita explosion!”)

Slowly tip a bottle of Corona upside down in the glass.

Add a straw and enjoy!

Rainy Day Treats

Today is the first cool and rainy day we’ve had in a while and softball practice was cancelled. The girls have been stuck inside being artists (think butcher paper on the kitchen table, water colors and crayons. While grocery shopping, I was inspired to come home, make a quick sweet treat, and watch the smiles on my girls’ (and husband’s) faces.

I’ll call these: Super Fast, Not-So-Healthy, Donuts

I purchased Buttermilk Biscuits from the refrigerator section. I bought the cheaper, smaller store brand variety. Any will do. I had the other ingredients at home: vegetable oil, sugar, cinnamon. Combine cinnamon and sugar in a bowl.

Find something to “punch” holes in the middle. I had a water bottle top that was a perfect size. I punched all of these holes while letting my oil slowly heat in a large heavy pot. Don’t fill your pot more than half-way with oil. It expands when heated.

I used one of my holes to check to see if the oil was at the right temperature. It will rise to the top and start cooking quickly. This won’t take long. When you see color around the edges, flip it over. It will take less time on the second side. Use a spoon to take it out.

When your oil is at the right temperature, get ready and go! It all goes fast, which is why it is important to have everything ready to go. Again, cook on the first side until you see color around the edges, then flip and continue cooking. I had a skinny wooden spoon which fit into the hole, which made it easy to take out and then toss into the cinnamon sugar mixture. Don’t overload your pot or the oil temperature will lower and your donuts won’t cook as well. I did four at a time. When I got to the holes, I put 9 or 10 in at a time.

Here is the end product. Super fast and good. They are especially good warm!

So, forget it’s Lent for one day, and make something that will put a smile on your children’s’ faces.