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recipe

My Obsession : Pumpkin Puree (or Pumpkin Brownies)

feed me, things that will make you fat October 28, 2013

You should know that I tend to go overboard when I fall in love with something. A man, a project, an ingredients. All these things tend to consume me for a while. Lately, I’ve been obsessed with finding a tasty Pumpkin Brownie recipe that didn’t suck. There are a ton of lazy three ingredient pumpkin brownie recipes out there, but frankly, they creep me out. I don’t try to make vegan food. I think gluten has it’s place in a lot of recipes. Pumpkin Brownies AHOY!

This obsession really started when I found 10 cans of Pumpkin Puree on sale at Kroger for less than $10.00. My economy being what it is, I took this as a sign from above that I needed to dabble in the Pumpkin Arts. (Wow, the caffiene is kicking in this morning). Dabble in the pumpkin arts? Who says that?

Pumpkin Puree for Recipes

Pumpkin Puree

My goal was simple: Make a pumpkin infused brownie that didn’t suck.

I present to you what I’ve managed to concoct.

Pumpkin Brownies

Serves 18 (or more if you are healthy, or less if you are a fatty)

Pre-Heat oven to 350

Ingredients:

Ingredients for Pumpkin Brownies

 

For the Brownies:

1 Box Brownie Mix (why go through the trouble of making scratch?)

All of the required stuff for brownies

For the Swirl:

3 Oz of softened cream cheese. (Seriously, make sure it’s softened)

Half can of Pumpkin Puree (15 oz can) . Do NOT use Pumpkin Pie filling.

1 egg

1/4 tsb nutmeg

1.5 tsb of cinnamon

3 TBL sugar

 

Ok- grab a 9* 13 brownie pan. Spray with your non-stick spray of choice. Set aside.

In one bowl, do up the brownies as per recipe.

Brownie Mix

 

In another bowl (or stand mixer bowl) add all of the filling ingredients:

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With a wisk attachment, blend filling ingredients together until smooth.

Pour brownie batter in prepared pan

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Take a tablespoon and drop the filling mix over the top

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Take a knife and pull through filling mix, to create a marbled effect.

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Toss in the oven for about 30-38 minutes. You will need to test to make sure the brownies and mix are completely cooked through.

 

Voila…. marbly, pumpkiny brownies. Let cool completely before cutting. I would strongly recommend keeping these puppies refridgerated if you don’t eat them all right away.

 

Craptastical Pumpkin Brownies

Craptastical Pumpkin Brownies

 

Chicken Pot Pie (and roast chicken)

things that will make you fat October 24, 2013

On Tuesday, I decided to roast a chicken. You know, a basic roasted chicken.

Being me, I decided that I needed to play with it a little bit. I took the bird (bought at the Mexican Meat market for $3.00), loaded the inner cavity with lemons and garlic, gave it a healthy coat of salt, pepper and olive oil, and threw in a roaster that had been lined with sliced onions. Easy peasy. Cook at 425 for about an hour (or the juices run clear.) House smelled delicious, and it was gorgeous.

chicky

Ok, now that I have the chicken, what was I going to do with it?

 

Chicken Pot Pie was the only answer. Seriously. I’ve been craving it for weeks. Not just a frozen pot pie (although I do have a few in the freezer now, but a real home-made pot pie.

 

It starts with the crust. I like my crusts flakey (as one would say I like my men). I used a basic Pate Brisee recipe that I learned in school. Lots of cold, cold butter. Ice water. Flour. Salt. Sugar. Instructions to follow.

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The key to a good pie crust- work fast, use cold, cold ingredients and don’t putz around with it too much. The more you work the dough, the tougher it will be.

 

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for rolling
  • 1 cup (2 sticks or 8 ounces) unsalted butter, very-cold, cut into 1/2 inch cubes. I keep the butter chilled to the moment it goes in the processor.
  • 1 teaspoon salt (kosher, of course)
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 6 to 8 Tbsp ice water (literally ice water, with cubes. keep it cold)

 

Combine flour, salt, and sugar in a food processor; pulse to mix. Add butter and pulse 6 to 8 times, until mixture resembles coarse meal, with pea size pieces of butter. Add ice water 1 Tbsp at a time, pulsing until mixture just begins to clump together. If you pinch some of the crumbly dough and it holds together, it’s ready. Do not over water.

Take the dough and knead it into a quick roundish mound. Split in half, form into two equal sized disks, wrap in plastic wrap and toss into the fridge for at least an hour. The dough needs to be chilled.

When ready, make sure you bring out to room temp for about 5 minutes before you start working the dough again.

Roll it out, throw in oven for 20-25 minutes, or once the top gets golden brown. You can use an egg wash, but you don’t have to. This recipe will make on total pie (top & bottom) , 2 tops or 6 mini pie tops. If you are using this recipe for a full sized pie- cover the edges in foil for the first 10-15 minutes. This will prohibit them from burning.

 

Ok- whew. That was a long diatribe on the crust without even getting to the darn pot pie.

Ingredients for pot pie (Or so I fashioned)

Chicken (cooked, cut up)- about 1.5 cups (or more)

Frozen Mixed Veggies- 1 bag

1.5 c of cut, cooked potatoes

can of peas

stick of butter (use to your health comfort)

1/2 c of flour

fresh thyme

onion

celery

2.5 C of Chicken Broth. I used boullion, but you can use the box stuff if you want.

1 C of milk

salt, pepper and garlic

 

Ok- so here we go:

 

1.) Chop onion and celery and garlic into small bite sized pieces

2.) In a dutch oven melt 2 tbl of butter and 1 quick splash of olive oil. Heat up.

3.) Toss onion/celery in oven and let cook for about 5 minutes, or until onions are soften. Pepper your mix at this point.

4.) Add in bag of frozen veggies to mix, and stir until all thawed

5.) Toss in potatoes and mix (don’t stir too hard, or your ‘taters will break.

6.) Add 3-4 more tbl of butter and let melt all the way.

7.) Add 1/2 cup of flour and stir until all mixed in.

8.) Pour in broth, then mix and let thicken (about 10 minutes)

9.) Add in chicken and peas

10.) Let simmer. Add herbs and spices to taste

11.) Turn off heat and let thicken a bit more-5-10 minutes. This will also let it cool down a bit before putting in pie tins.

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Let this cool another few minutes before putting the pie cover on. However, this is the time, for you to set the filled pie plates aside and start rolling out your tops. Reserve one mini pie plate to use as template.

Preheat the oven to 375.

Pull dough out of fridge and set on counter for five minutes. Sprinkle flour on countertop and quickly roll out. DO NOT WORK DOUGH TOO MUCH. Use the pie plate as your guide to cut. Leave an extra 1.5 inches around for the “fold over”

Fill your pies.

Cover them with dough

Take an egg and a tbl of water and create a quick egg wash. Cover tops of pies.

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Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until pie tops are golden.

Truthfully, I forgot to take a picture of the final pie. But I assure you, it was delicious.

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Enjoy.