Pumpkin Bread Pudding

Happy thanksgiving! The food festivities are starting off here on the right foot with a pumpkin bread pudding complete with bourbon. I have seen recipes for pumpkin bread puddings and pumpkin French toasts and have long wanted to try one. This year was the year! Last night I made the pudding so David just stuck it in the oven when he got up, so breakfast was less fuss more yum.

I found this recipe on smittenkitchen last week.

3/4 stick butter, melted
1 1/2 cup milk
3/4 cup canned pumpkin
1/2 cup sugar
2 large eggs + 1 yolk
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/8 tsp allspice
Pinch ground cloves
Bourbon (the one thing to never measure)
5 cups cubed bread

I started by melting the butter. While it melted I whisked all of the remaining ingredients together in a bowl except the bread. I coated the bread with the butter I tossed the liquids with the bread and put them into a Pyrex. I covered the goods and left them in the fridge overnight. In the morning we uncovered and cooked for about 35-40 at 350 F.

The verdict is that my expectations were too high. I felt it wasn't quite pumpkin-y enough. David enjoyed it but wanted more seasoning. I used challah since it makes for good French toast but I would go to regular bread or a baguette next time. Still a yummy breakfast which would have been better with son vanilla Greek yogurt, or better yet whipped cream!

Penne all'amatriciana

For out 7th monthiversary I gave one of our favorite honeymoon meals a try. We fell in LOVE with the amatriciana. It was so simple and so tasty. I have never seen it in a local restaurant so I wanted to try my hand at it.

I started by chopping and sauntering up a couple thick slices of pancetta in some olive oil on medium for 4-5 min until it was good and crispy. I added about 3/8 tsp of red pepper flakes and 1/2 tsp of ground black pepper. I left them to sauté for a fee seconds and added 3-4 cloves of minced garlic. Cooked the garlic on medium low for about 8 min until cooked through. I added a 28 oz can of crushed tomatoes and let them cook up for 20 minutes while cooking pasta. Toss to coat immediately and enjoy!

It was ok, obviously not as good as the real deal. The guy at Market District didn't give give me enough pancetta, so next time I'm going to try it with more pancetta that is chopped more coarsely and use chopped tomatoes instead of crushed. I need the texture, even if others don't. I think this one will be coming back again for a redo because it will become a family favorite. :).

We miss you, Roma!


Candied Acorn Squash

I made this delicious side last weekend for dinner. I modified the Crock Pot lady's recipe for my tastes and what I had in the house

1 acorn squash, de-seeded and chopped coarsely
1/4 cup water
2 apples, cored, peeled, and chopped
1.5 tbl butter
2 tbl cinnamon
1.5-2 tbl brown sugar
1/4 cup dried cranberries
1-2 tbl pecans

1. Place the chopped squash in the bottom of the crock pot with the water
2. In a mixing bowl combine apples, cranberries, pecans, melted butter, cinnamon, and brown sugar. Mix well.
3. Place the apple mixture on top of the squash and cook on low for a couple of hours.
4. Mix, serve, and enjoy

Delicious. It smelled like fall in the house and it tasted even better! I could have eaten the whole thing on accident, it felt almost more like a dessert than anything else :). I did constrain myself and enjoyed the leftovers with leftover pork for lunch later in the week :).

Let the crock pot time of year begin!