Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Little Lunch Tote

I have been anxious to get caught up on a few projects so I could make this awesome little tote. I used this tutorial http://ayumills.blogspot.com/2010/08/tutorial-lunch-bag.html

I pretty much made it exactly as the tutorial, except for the inside gathered top, I did piece part of it (inside the bottom portion) because I didn't quite have enough using fat quarters. But if you use 1/4 yd cuts width of fabric, you will be fine, providing they are cut generously, or straight and accurate.

I intend to make some for my buddies for Christmas. I think part of the fun was finding fabric that I knew they would like. I am so excited to start sewing their totes!

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Monday, September 27, 2010

pumpkin pie Oh My!

I think I have finally found the perfect fresh pumpkin pie recipe. This might even pass the husband test. This was this best pumpkin pie I ever made, and it might even be the best I ever tasted!

My issue with fresh pumpkin pies has been that they taste blah. Not pumpkiny, but watery, pulpy, just not good at all. So I researched a few recipes and hit upon one that seemed good. This recipe also gave me tips on how to make the filling smooth etc., and a secret ingredient, molasses. Wouldn't you know I didn't have molasses? Well they don't call me the queen of punt for nothing! I used dark karo syrup and brown sugar and it worked. Next time I will use molasses, in fact, next time I will try the recipe exactly as written. Sure, right, but there's a first time for everything!

I am going to give you the recipe as I made it, also the original before I changed it. Make them both, you decide.

Be aware that sometimes your pumpkin may just not be a tasty pumpkin. I try to use sugar pie pumpkins. I try to choose ones that are small but heavy for their size.

Homemade Fresh Pumpkin Pie as I made it

Single, unbaked crust
2 large eggs
1/2 c fat free evaporated milk
1 1/2 c pumpkin puree (instructions below)
2 tbsp butter, melted
1/2 c brown sugar, packed
2 tbsp dark Karo syrup
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice (I use Penzey's)
1/8 tsp cinnamon
Pinch salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Beat eggs until frothy, add milk. Whisk in pumpkin, sugar, syrup, butter, salt and spices. Whisk until well blended.
Pour filling into crust, bake until center is firm, 45-50 minutes. Cool completely on wire rack.

Homemade Pumpkin Pie - original recipe

Unbaked single crust
2 large eggs
3/4 c milk
1 1/4 c pumpkin puree
2 tbsp butter, melted
1/2 c sugar
1 tbsp dark molasses
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/8 tsp ground cloves
Pinch salt

Preheat oven to 350.
Heat milk in saucepan over medium heat until just starts to bubble around edges. Remove from heat.
Beat eggs until frothy, add milk stirring constantly. Stir in pumpkin, sugar, butter, molasses, salt and spices. Whisk until well blended.
Pour into prepared our crust, bake until center is firm 45 minutes. Cool on wire rack.

How to make pumpkin puree

Split pie pumpkin in half cross wise, remove seeds and fibers.
Place cut side down on lightly greased baking sheet. Bake at 325 until tender, about 1 hour.
Scrape pulp away from skin, discard skin.
Place pulp in blender or food processer, process in batches until smooth.
Push puree through a course sieve. Puree can be stored in freezer for up to 6 months.

My way of doing things

Cut pumpkin, remove stem. Place cut side down on greased baking sheet, seeds pulp and all.
Bake at 350 until tender, scrape away seeds and fibers, discard. Then scrape pumpkin pulp into bowl, discard shell. Blend until smooth with stick blender.
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Sunday, September 12, 2010

Easiest Cookies in the World

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip cookies

1 c peanut butter, any kind
1 c sugar
1 egg
1/2 c Mini chocolate chips

Mix all together, drop by spoonfuls onto cookie sheet. Bake 10 minutes at 350 degrees.
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