Unusual autumn pumpkin flavors to spice up your life

courtesy of the New York Times

If each month of the year had its own complimentary flavor, November’s would most certainly be pumpkin. As we adjust our calendar and approach the upcoming holiday season, let pumpkin play its role in keeping the festivities alive. Whether you’ve already devoured your stash of last month’s candy, or don’t know what to do with it, make sure to work up your appetite for the annual and irresistible pumpkin spice sensation before it is too late. Below, find some of this year’s most popular pumpkin recipes, and let your taste buds pump(kin)-up your appetite from there.

 

Pumpkin Pancakes & Sticky Maple Pecans

While crepes offer some minor competition, pancakes are timeless and almost impossible to turn down. For many people it is all about the topping; some–bananas, others–strawber­ries, many–chocolate and the most bold–a mix of all the above. But what about pumpkin– have you ever considered adding November’s favorite flavor into your stack? If yes, then you already know what is in store, but for new comers–prepare to take the classic breakfast to a completely new level. Prepare your batter per usual, but, add in a bit of pumpkin puree and mix until smooth. Next, take a minute to embellish this dish with warm, crunchy and syrupy pecans before cooking until golden brown.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups pecan halves
  • 2 tablespoons of pure maple syrup
  • 3 tablespoons of superfine sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 cups of all purpose flour
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
  • 1 15-ounce can of pumpkin puree
  • 1 teaspoon of vegetable oil
courtesy of the New York Times
courtesy of the New York Times

Pumpkin Tiramisu

If you’re not sold at the sound of tiramisu, try adding pumpkin into the mix. It is impossi­ble to resist. It starts with pumpkin crème for the base. While the crème refrigerates you’ll have time to bake the vanilla cake base. Finally top everything off with an espresso soak driz­zle, strategic layers of chocolate and cake.

Pumpkin Crème:

  • 1/3 cup cornstarch
  • 1/3 cup water mixed with
  • ¾ cup canned coconut milk
  • 1 15 ounce pumpkin puree
  • ¾ cup maple syrup
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • ½ teaspoon salt

Vanilla Cake:

  • 3 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 ¾ cup of almond milk
  • 1 cup canola oil
  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract

Espresso Soak:

  • ½ cup amaretto
  • ¼ cup water
  • 3 tablespoons instant espresso

Pumpkin-Sage Pasta

For first-timers, the thought of combining pumpkin flavor into pasta might sound scary. However, it certainly becomes a risk worth taking no matter how picky of an eater you may be–vegans this includes you, too! Plus, with a delicious dish like this, you will impress guests with your assembly of not only unique flavors, but also your perfect execution, as the cooking process is seriously painless. Then, if the pasta isn’t fancy enough for you, you can douse it with some more pumpkin-flavor. Eat well and stay well with pasta sauce that com­bines pumpkin whip, sage, salt and pepper and optional grated (vegan) Parmesan cheese if desired. Simple, seasonal, satisfying and seri­ously worth trying.

Ingredients:

  • 4 ounces of whole-wheat (or gluten free) pasta
  • 1/2 cup vegetable broth
  • 1/2 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1-2 tablespoons of minced fresh sage
  • 1/8 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice
  • A pinch of dried oregano and (optional) red pepper flakes
  • (Optional) Vegan Parmesan
  • Salt and Pepper

Pumpkin and Saffron Jasmine Rice Pilaf

One frequently neglects the fact that pump­kin isn’t limited to sweet treats. However, when mixed into the classic recipe, rice pilaf with saffron–this decadent duo is quite diffi­cult to resist. Imagine paella meets fall as each spoonful of this dish consists of rich flavors accompanied by simple, but significant sta­ples. Begin this recipe as you would with any rice (preferably jasmine) dish. When ready, puree the pumpkin with 1 1/2 cups of water. Lastly, heat oven to 350 degrees, drain the soaked rice and prepare to cook it above heat­ed olive oil, garlic, saffron and minced onions. Watch as your rice stirs to avoid over cooking the grains and finally, top it off with preferred pinches of spices before leaving it to cook in the oven for approximately 25 minutes.

Ingredients:

2 cups jasmine rice

6 cups of pumpkin squash (peeled, seeded and chopped)

2 tablespoons of olive oil

3 cloves of garlic

1/2 teaspoon of saffron threads

1/2 teaspoon of ground allspice

1 cup grated onion

1 tablespoon of kosher salt

courtesy

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