Entries Tagged as 'pumpkin'

Dessert First! Decadent Pumpkin Torte

See that right there?  That, my friends, is worth every anxiety attack I’ve had over the last week. [Read more →]

Potaje Canario de Verduras (Canarian Vegetable Stew)

Potaje (pronounced po-TAH-hay) is a delicious multi vegetable stew very typical of the Canary Islands.  Here, rather than have all the food served at once, meals are served in courses.  Generally a first course, which can be either a soup, stew, salad, or pasta and is then followed by the main course and of course following that, dessert and coffee.  Many restaurants in Spain offer a lunch “menu,” where you can choose a first and second course from the day’s specials, and it comes with a beverage and dessert.  I’m pretty sure that the variety of potajes are as varied as the chefs that prepare them.  There are lentil potajes, watercress potajes (look for this one soon), corn potaje…the limit is your own creativity, much like soups and stews everywhere else in the world.  Let me share with you my mil’s recipe for Potaje Canario….




*note, add or subract at your preference, the amounts are approximate.

2 tablespoons olive oil
3-4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon smokey paprika
2 ripe tomatoes, skinned, seeded and diced
1 onion, diced
a few sprigs of thyme
1-2 bay leaves
salt and pepper to taste
1 cob corn, broken in two pieces
3 zucchini, diced
2 carrots, diced
1 large handful green beans, trimmed and cut into bite sized pieces
1 large handful of fresh pinto beans, shucked (you can also use canned)
2 large potatoes, peeled and diced
1/2 of a sweet potato, peeled and diced
1 chunk of pumpkin, peeled and diced (about 2 cups)
1 red pepper, seeded and diced
1 thick slice of bacon, sliced (omit for vegan/vegetarian)
enough broth to generously cover vegetables (I used about 3 1/2 quarts I’d guess?)


In a large stockpot (this makes a LOT!), heat olive oil and saute garlic just until golden.
Add tomatoes, onions, paprika, thyme and bay, then season with salt and pepper.
Saute until vegetables are tender (this is called the “refrito.”)
Add remaining ingredients and generously cover with stock.
Season with salt and pepper.

Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer about 30 minutes.
Remove lid and simmer another hour or so, until the stew begins to thicken.
Adjust seasoning.
Serve with Queso Fresco and nice crispy baguettes.

Pumpkin Streusel Maxi Muffins

The temps have actually cooled off a little here in Canaryland…we’re now into more wintery weather (which for us, means high 60′s-low 70′sF/high teens to low 20′sC, and lots of rain :P ).  With the cooler temps comes my need to fill the house with spicy aromas baking in the oven and simmering on the stove….cinnamon, pumpkin, apples….yes indeed.  I’m almost ready to break out the tree and start decorating for the holidays! :O  But maybe not just yet.  I should probably celebrate this as fall for at least a week or two, right? LOL  The kids have been asking for new and different healthy things they can bring to school to snack on, and they love pumpkin pie…so I thought, why not make up some pumpkin muffins?  Easily transportable, and mostly nutritious…perfect!  Once they were made, the kids gobbled them up so quickly they never even made it to school. hahaha  Time to make some more.

pumpkin muffins


1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups pumpkin puree
1 egg
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
pinch of salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ginger
pinch of ground cloves
1/4 cup quick oats
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 tablespoon butter, melted
cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and cloves to taste


Preheat oven to 375ºF/190ºC.
Lightly grease 8 ramekins with sunflower oil or butter.
Cream butter and sugars until fluffy.
Add pumpkin and egg and beat to combine.
Add milk and vanilla and continue to beat until well mixed.
Mix dry ingredients (up to oats) in a bowl, and add to sugar mixture.
Stir by hand just until combined.
Fill ramekins 3/4 full.
Combine streusel ingredients and top each muffin with mixture.
Bake for 40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
***note These can also be made in regular muffin cups, you should be able to get 12 muffins, and the baking time should be reduced to 25 minutes.

Hearty Pumpkin and Mushroom Risotto

Risotto…what can I say about it that you probably don’t already know? Not much, I’m guessing. Creamy rice mixed with a touch of wine, a bit of parmigiano-reggiano, and whatever ingredients suit your fancy at the time. It’s all about the technique I suppose…a proper risotto must be cared for and tended to for it to come out perfect. I’ve found that the only way to get perfect results is to add the liquid little bits at a time, stirring constantly until the liquid is absorbed, then repeating until desired “creaminess” is achieved. This makes it difficult to nail down the exact quantities of liquid, but, as I always say, each person’s tastes are different, some prefer their rice more al dente, others prefer it softer, and yet, others prefer it downright soupy. I’m not judging anyone’s tastes, I’m just saying that you’ll need to take your desired result into consideration when preparing risotto. :) Cooking is all about being creative, letting your inner Julia Child or Rick Bayless come out to play…I’m a firm believer that a recipe is just the starting point to creating a dish that your own family will love. :)

pumpkin and mushroom risotto


2-3 tablespoons butter
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 medium onion, minced
2 cups diced pumpkin
2 cups sliced mushrooms
1 1/2 cups arborio or other rounded short grain rice
4 cups (about) chicken broth (or vegetable broth for vegetarian)
1 cup dry white wine (about)
thyme to taste
sage to taste
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup freshly grated parmigiano-reggiano cheese
fresh chopped parsley (about 1/4 cup)


In a large, fairly deep sautee pan, sautee garlic in butter until golden.
Add onions and continue sauteeing until translucent.
Add mushrooms and sautee for about 10 minutes, until soft.
Add pumpkin and sautee another 10 minutes over medium high heat (we want the pumpkin to brown just a bit).
Add rice and stir to combine.
Cook for about 2-3 minutes, then add a good pour of wine, stirring constantly, until absorbed.
Repeat with broth, adding a good pour, stirring until all broth is absorbed.
Repeat alternating wine and broth, check your rice after adding about 4 cups of liquid for doneness.
I find the amount varies, depending on the ingredients I’ve chosen, so you’ll need to keep an eye on it to make sure the rice cooks to your satisfaction.
When rice is done the way you like it, add in parmigiano-reggiano and parsley and stir through.
Serve immediately.

Fresh Pumpkin Pumpkin Pie

MMMMM What says Fall more than pumpkin pie? As I mentioned in an earlier post, Fall is the time of year when we celebrate all of our kids’ birthdays. Each chooses the “cake” they want, of course…this time Adriana chose pumpkin pie rather than cake. Works for me! :) It’s funny sometimes, the things I took for granted in the US…canned pumpkin is just such an example. Here, I need to buy fresh and pre-cook and drain the pumpkin, because canned is unavailable. Turns out? I like fresh WAY better than canned anyway. Fate has a way of showing us things that perhaps never would have occurred to us otherwise. I say, good for Her (and good for us, too!)!

pumpkin pie

Ingredients (for 2 pies):

2 pounds (1 kilo) fresh pumpkin, halved
2 pie crusts (use your favorite recipe, or cheat and buy pre-made ;) )
1 can (16 ounce/410 grams) evaporated milk
2 eggs
2/3 cup sugar
1-2 teaspoons vanilla
cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cloves and allspice to taste…I like a spicier pie, so I add quite a bit (2 teaspoons cinnamon, 1 teaspoon nutmeg, 1 teaspoon ginger, 1/4 teaspoon cloves and 1/2 teaspoon allspice *approximately*)


Heat oven to 390ºF/200ºC.
Line a baking sheet with foil and place pumpkin cut side down on sheet.
Bake about 30 minutes or until tender.
Line a sieve with a tea towel, and place pumpkin in sieve over a bowl, covered.
Allow to drain in fridge 24 hours, or, if you’re in more of a hurry, just twist the tea towel and squeeze out excess liquid.
You should have about 2-2/12 cups pumpkin after draining.
Heat oven to 390ºF/200ºC.
Prepare pie plates with crust, poking with a fork.
Puree all ingredients in a large bowl or blender.
Divide mixture between the two pie plates.
Bake at 390ºF/200ºC for 10 minutes, then reduce heat to 375ºF/175ºC.
Bake about an hour to an hour and a half, checking center of pie until no longer “jiggly” (that is a highly technical cooking term, and I’m sticking by it. LOL). (Ok, ok, until center of pie is set. sheesh! :P )
Remove from oven and allow to cool.
Serve with fresh whipped cream.
Chill any leftovers (if you’re lucky enough to have them) in the refrigerator.

Hannah’s Pumpkin Pie Milkshakes AKA: Nirvana

Pumpkin pie probably isn’t the first thing you might think of for a summer treat, but milkshakes certainly are, right?  My friend, Hannahbanana, at Vox posted a recipe a while ago for Pumpkin Pie Milkshakes.  Oh.  My.  Gawd.  If you like pumpkin pie, and you like milkshakes, this is just about the best thing ever invented.  Ever.  On the whole planet.  I’ve made a few minor changes to her recipe…. I use fresh roasted pumpkin rather than canned. This is not because of some need for making things more complicated than necessary, mind you…it is out of sheer circumstance.  Canned pumpkin is not available here in Canaryland.  So.  I roast my own.  Oh, and I use full-fat stuff, too. So much for that diet, huh? :P

hannahs milkshakes


2 cups vanilla ice-cream
1 cup milk
2/3 cup canned pumpkin (or fresh roasted, then drained overnight)
1/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice (I use a blend of my own…a generous pinch of cinnamon, and a smidge of freshly grated nutmeg, ground cloves and ginger)
whipped cream to top shakes


Place all ingredients except whipped cream in a blender (reserve some of the spice mixture for garnish).
Buzz it all up, baby!
Now, distribute the milkshakes among 4 glasses. Or, if you happen to be a piggy like me, in 2.  3 max. lmao ;)
Top with whipped cream and sprinkle with spice mixture.
Prepare to taste a bit of heaven.


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