Pumpkins Pumpkins Pumpkins

 

pumpkins-anyone

Pumpkins, anyone?????  It’s October and pumpkin season in the Okanagan.  These adorable little pumpkins are super for decorating, and make the best pumpkin flesh.  Roast up a few, and freeze it for using in the middle of winter when pumpkin season is just a memory.

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I like oven roasting my pumpkins, seems to intensify the flavour and – not only that, super easy!

Cut pumpkins in half, scoop out seeds and turn upside down on roasting pan (I like to cover with parchment paper for easy clean up)

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Set those yummy pumpkin seeds aside for another day …. roasted with some seasoning they are a great snack or addition to salads!

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Once you scoop out the roasted pumpkin flesh, use an immersion blender to puree it all, then turn it into a heavy bottom pot and allow to reduce slightly …. (4 cups pumpkin flesh should reduce to 3).  Removing some of this water makes for more flavourful pumpkin flesh.

 

Sugar Cookies

This is the best sugar cookie recipe – our family has been making it for generations – many years of cookies being decorated for any occasion.  As the girls got older, the competitions heated up for making the most creative cookie.

Preheat oven to 375

3/4 cup butter

These little helpers are 32 and 30 years old now!

1 cup white sugar

2 beaten eggs

2 1/2 cups flour

2 tsp cream of tartar

1 tsp soda

pinch of salt

Cream butter well, adding sugar.  Beat until well incorporated then beat in eggs.  Whip until light and fluffy.

Sift dry ingedients together and add to butter mixture.  Knead well, adding flour until dough is soft and easy to work with.  Cover tightly with plastic wrap and put in fridge for one hour before rolling.

Emma and Allison always love it when they come to visit and get to help Auntie Kathy bake – decorating is the best part!

Roll out on lightly floured surface and using cookie cutters, cut out shapes.

Our family isn’t really crazy about icing, so we always decorate the cookies at this point with egg paint.

Bake at 375 for 10 minutes

Be careful not to get too much egg paint, or candies on the cookies – a light touch makes for better cookies, and more even baking. You can see the cookies here that just may have had a little too much decorating from the younger ones around the table!

EGG PAINT

Separate yolks and whites into separate bowls.  It doesn’t take much so you can make 2 colors out of each egg white, and 2 from each egg yolk.  Beat each bowl lightly with a fork, adding 1 tbsp of water to each.  Separate into small containers so you can make 4 different colors.  Using food coloring add until you get the color you like.  With the egg yolk make sure to choose a color that will work with yellow!    Using paint brushes, decorate the cookies while raw, then bake.