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Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Pumpkin Smoothies and Rollin’ Your Own

I was reminded of something at the Pumpkin Patch last week. Many animals grow a thicker coat and fatten up for winter. Therefore, it’s entirely natural that I’m in the mood to cook again, now that the weather is cooler. By cooler I mean that we went from high 70s to 40s in the space of a week. Apparently when it falls, it falls quickly in Wisconsin. Anyway, I bought a thicker, warmer coat, and now I’m working on putting on a little extra layer!

Pumpkin-Coffee This pumpkin latte smoothie is my attempt to control the fluff. It’s a healthy alternative to a pumpkin spice latte from a coffee shop, the nearest of which is a twenty-minute drive and would involve changing out of yoga pants because it is not a drive-through. Here’s how to whip one up for yourself.

Pumpkin Latte Smoothie

1 cup strong brewed coffee
1 cup almond milk
1 scoop Jillian Michaels Whey Protein Vanilla Shake mix
1/4 to 1/2 cup pumpkin puree (from a can, of course)
Optional: Psyllium for fiber, a banana, a handful of ice cubes, and, if you’re really feeling thin, a dollop of sweetened condensed milk. Not that I would do that.

Blend it up, top it with a little pumpkin pie spice, and enjoy!

Last night we had Broccoli Three Cheese Soup for dinner, and I found myself out of any tasty bread to accompany it. I found some great sounding recipes on the King Arthur Flour website, but ultimately thought Hot Buttered Pretzels would be fun to make.

After making the dough in the food processor, it had to rest 30 minutes. I divided it into 8 pieces and let it rest another 5 minutes. Then it was time to roll!

They had fun, no matter what you heard, rolling their own. I certainly don't want one their grubby little hands touched. By the way, it was "red" day at school. They don't normally all dress alike. Today is "pink" day so the boys conceded that I could tie a pink ribbon on their wrists. I'm sure they cut it off as soon as possible.

After we shaped them, they had to rest another 10 minutes. It was just enough time for a cocktail. Unfortunately, all I had handy was some seltzer water. At least it had lime in it.

About ten minutes in the oven, and we had pretzels almost as good as the ones at the mall. The closest mall is about an hour away, so I'm willing to settle for "almost as good." It kept my kids busy and they didn't wreck their rooms after school, so there's another advantage! Oh, and, of course at the mall you would never be able to get a pretzel with green marker incorporated, now would you?

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