Monday, October 20, 2014

Simply Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

Halloween is such a fun holiday. Carving your jack-o-lantern is definitely a must.
But wait!
Do NOT throw away those pumpkin seeds!
You can turn them into crunchy, salty, golden little gems. I like to roast mine very simply with a little EVOO and salt. But you can definitely spice them up or make them sweet. Either way, they are super addictive!

Oh and did I mention that pumpkin seeds, also known as pepitas, are nutritional powerhouses? They provide many nutrients ranging from magnesium and manganese to copper, protein and zinc. Definitely a snack you can feel good about!

Makes 1 to 2 cups
  • Pumpkin seeds from one medium pumpkin = graines de citrouille
  • Olive oil = huile d'olive
  • Sea salt = sel

Scoop the seeds out and rinse in a colander under running water. Let them dry for several hours or overnight. Transfer to a medium bowl and drizzle about 2 teaspoons of olive oil. Stir until all the seeds are well coated. Then sprinkle about 1 teaspoon of sea salt. Give it another stir.

Spread onto a baking sheet (fitted with a baking mat). Roast for about 20 minutes in a 350°F / 180°C oven, stirring halfway through. Make sure not to burn them!

Remove from oven and let them cool down. Transfer to an airtight container.
Snack on them, add them to a homemade trail mix, or sprinkle on top of an autumn salad. Enjoy!

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Oven-Baked Apple Butter

 Contrary to its name, apple butter doesn't have any butter in it! Apple spread would be a more appropriate name but apple butter it is! It is smooth and sweet and goes beautifully on top of Greek yogurt (my favorite way to eat it!) and oatmeal, or you can also spread it on buttered toasts or pancakes. Need more ideas, look here for more creative ways to use apple butter.

You can slow cook apple butter on the stove, but I like the hands-free oven method. Just stir once or twice every 30 minutes and let the magic happen: in about 3 to 4 hours, the sauce will reduce and reach a perfectly smooth and thick texture and a beautiful deep amber color. And your kitchen will smell amazing!

Feel free to can the apple butter (following proper safety procedures) as it makes a wonderful homemade holiday gift!
I just hosted my Cooking Club friends for a “Fall Feast” and I chose to pack my apple butter into mini plastic containers as a party favor for my guests. Cute, no?

Makes about 2 ½ cups
  • 4 pounds apples, peeled and chopped = 1.8 kg de pommes, épluchées et coupées en morceaux
  • 2 cups apple cider = 475 ml de jus de pomme
  • 1 cup light brown sugar = 200 g de cassonnade
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt = ½ cuillère à café de sel
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice = 1 cuillère à soupe de jus de citron
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon =1 cuillère à café de cannelle en poudre
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract = 1 cuillère à café d'extrait de vanilla
  • Pinch of ground cloves = une pincée de clou de girofle en poudre

Combine the apples, apple cider, brown sugar and salt in a large Dutch. Bring to a simmer over medium heat and cook for about 20 minutes, until the apples are soft. Remove from the heat and stir in the lemon juice, cinnamon, vanilla and cloves. Use an immersion blender (or puree in batches in a regular blender) until smooth.

Bake, uncovered, in a 250°F / 130°C oven, stirring every 30 minutes, for 3 to 4 hours, until it's thick and dark. Remove from the oven and let cool completely before transferring to an airtight container. Refrigerate and use within 2 weeks.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Maple Pumpkin Spiced Latte

This latte is autumn heaven in a cup! Sure, you can go to any coffee shop and get one but:
  1. You'd have to get out of the house
  2. You'd be spending your hard-earned cash – $5 for a latte? No thank you!
  3. Do you even know what's in that latte – real pumpkin? real spices? I don't think so.
I tried different proportions and sweeteners and to me, this one has the best balance of flavors. I especially love the touch of maple syrup but you could use ½ teaspoon of vanilla extract instead.

Makes 1 serving
  • 2/3 cup freshly brewed coffee = 160 ml de café
  • 1/3 cup milk (any kind you like) = 80 ml de lait
  • 2 tablespoons pumpkin purée = 2 cuillères à soupe de purée de citrouille
  • Pinch of cinnamon = une pincée de cannelle
  • Pinch of cloves = une pincée de girofle en poudre
  • Pinch of nutmeg = une pincée de noix de muscade
  • 1 teaspoon maple syrup = une cuillère à café de sirop d'érable
Mix all the ingredients, except maple syrup, in a small sauce pan and heat over medium on the stove for a few minutes. Stir maple syrup in and transfer to a mug. Enjoy!