Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Pumpkin delights

I really like pumpkins! They look like they came straight out of a fairy tale or a fantasy world. Have you guys ever seen a pumpkin field? So cute with all the orange spots! I think they look magical, but this may just be my little girl's heart speaking and dreaming. ;)

Pumpkins make great decorations around Halloween, but they are also delicious! I bought one single medium size pumpkin very recently, and here's what I did with it. 

Pumpkin soup (Or the Witch's potion.... if served at Halloween!)

2 cups pumpkin in cubes
1 cup carrots in slices
1 big onion, minced
2 tbsp fresh ginger root, minced
1 cup lentils
1 can cubed tomatoes
approx. 1 cup tomato juice
approx. 4 cups chicken bouillon
(liquids can be adjusted)

1- Cut open and clear the inside of the pumpkin.
Note: Set the seeds aside for later use.

2- Cut the pulp in cubes. Use approx. 2 cups for this recipe. Set the rest aside.
Note: I made sure to keep the bottom half of the pumpkin intact to use as a serving bowl!

3 - Prepare the carrots, onion and ginger root.

4- Put everything together in a cooking pot. Bring to a boil, lower heat and simmer until the carrots are tender.

Enjoy the delicious taste and comforting warmth. :)

Note: Can be frozen. 

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

Time to use those seeds we put aside.
Note: I kept some of the seeds to dry and store for next year's gardening season!

Mine are a bit too salty! Don't make the same mistake. ;)

1- Preheat oven to 150 C. (300 F)
2 - Separate the seeds from the pumpkin fibres. Clean under cold water if necessary.
3- Toss the seeds in a little bit of vegetable oil.
4 - Place in a single layer on a cookie plate. Sprinkle with a little bit of salt.
5 - Bake until golden (20 to 30 mins)

Eat the roasted seeds whole. Yummy little evening snack!

Pumpkin Cookies

One can not talk of pumpkin delights without talking of pumpkin cookies!

1/2 cup (125 ml) melted butter
1/2 cup (160 ml) brown sugar
1/2 cup (160 ml) white sugar
2 eggs
1 ts (5 ml) vanilla extract
2 cups (500 ml) grated pumpkin
1 1/2 cups (375 ml) flour
1 1/2 cups (375 ml) oat flakes
1/2 ts (2 ml) grounded cinnamon
1/2 ts (2 ml) grounded nutmeg
1 pinch of salt

Preheat oven to 180 C (375 F)

1 - Mix the melted butter, sugars, eggs and vanilla together.
2- Add the pumpkin. Mix lightly and set aside.
3 - Mix together the dry ingredients (flour, oat flakes, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt)
4 - Add to the wet ingredients and mix thoroughly.
5 - Place on a cookie plate and bake for 10 to 15 minutes.

* * *

I still have half a pumpkin to use, and I am thinking of trying to make a pumpkin pie. I've never tried it, as my grandmother makes the best pumpkin pies in this entire Universe! But now that I live in a different country, I can not enjoy the yearly pumpkin pie meeting (aka: Thanksgiving), so I'll just have to learn to make my own!

Happy Halloween to those who celebrate it!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Fall Cream Soup

Remember the pumpkins (red kuri squash) that I grew from seeds? (click here) Well, they grew and I ended up with 3 beautiful ripe squashes and I couldn't wait to taste them! Today being a very Fall'ish rainy day, I decided to make a lovely, warm and yummy cream soup.

Simple and easy cream soup for rainy Fall days

- 1 red kuri squash
- 1 big onion
- a few carrots (6-7 small)
- 1 big potato
- a piece of fresh ginger (I use a piece about the size of my thumb from tip to where it first bends)
- Chicken bouillon (preferably real)
- salt and pepper

Cut the squash in quarters, remove the inside part, peel the pieces and cut in cubes. I use a small knife and a spoon to cut out and scrape the inside, and an ordinary carrot/potato peeler to peel the outer part off.

Red kuri squash

Peel and cut the carrots, potato, onion and fresh ginger in pieces. There is nothing precise here. Just cut them out and throw them into a cooking pot. Add chicken bouillon until it just covers the veggies. Add salt and pepper.

Squash, carrots, potato, onion, ginger, chicken bouillon, salt and pepper. 
Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until the vegetables are tender. Remove from heat and blend together. You should obtain an even, fairly smooth texture.

Blend together when all the vegetables are tender.
 That's it! Serve with a sip of cream and a piece of bread. I personally enjoy eating cottage cheese with my vegetable cream soup. Try it! It's not bad at all. :)


Saturday, October 13, 2012


As the weather is getting colder, and I am spending less and less time out in the garden, my motivation for indoor arts and crafts is climbing again, as it tends to do every Fall.

My hobby focus lately has been on crocheting. Good friends of mine brought to the world an adorable baby girl at the end of July, and I have been having a lot of fun crocheting small items to her.

Hat, dress and "shoes" in newborn size
Mini shoes in the converse style
My husband also requested a new scarf, as the one I had made for him a few years ago is getting quite worn out. So I made him a scarf and ear warmer set, which I think he is happy for. :)

These are blankets I made a while back. The yellow and white one was made a few years ago, when I still lived in Canada. The other one I made sometime this year. Unfortunately, I misjudged how much yarn I would need and ran out of 2 colours. They were balls of yarn I took with me from Canada, so I could not just go and buy new ones! So it ended up as a very small blanket. Oh well! I still had fun making it.

I enjoy crocheting in front of the tv in the evening. However, I do miss the easy access to a vast variety of yarn at good price, which I was used to from Canada. I find the selection limited here in Denmark, and the prices higher, unless there's a good sale somewhere. But the good sales often are for yarn that are not, in my taste, soft enough for baby items. Perhaps I am yet to find the right places to shop at. :)