Okay Halloween was Tuesday and maybe I should have posted then but well as you can imagine I was busy.
Now pumpkin is the best part of Halloween for me, well other than the fun candy and costumes that is. I picked up a nice medium sized pumpkin this year. Not too big and not too small. While we didn’t carve it up for a jack o lantern I did use it for as much food type stuff I could.
Of course I have made up the traditional pumpkin seeds which my daughter claimed before they even got out of the oven. This year I decided to see what I could do both with the skin of the pumpkin and the ewie goey stringy gut of the pumpkin.
The skin can be turned into a dried chip like treat pretty simply. All you need to do is put it in your oven at the lowest temp it can reach. When I looked up the process they recommended lightly brushing them with oil and then dusting them with salt and paprika. So that is what I did.
You put them in the oven over night and in the morning you will have a crispy set of peels that can be used for a snack, a garnish or even mixed into your next batch of yummy tea!
Now the strings. Most of us just dump them in the trash and I really have thought it was a waste for the longest time. Well if you take the strings, after you remove the seeds of course, place them in your crock pot and cover them with water. Set your crock pot to the lower setting and let it simmer for the day. Once it has just pop it into your blender and buzz it till it is smooth. You will have a lovely pumpkin stock that you can use for almost as many uses as your basic chicken stock.
This late in the month of October we are all thinking of Halloween and jack-o-lanterns. We carve them up, toss out the insides and put candles in them to make our front porches look spooky. Now while this is a fun and wonderful part of the holiday personally I have always thought it was a waste.
The pumpkin is filled with SEEDS. Those wonderful little white losenges of goodness that we end up throwing away. You don’t have to you know? Actually almost everything from a pumpkin is good to eat. I have in previous years roasted the pumpkin flesh, pureed it and used it in cookies, muffins, soups and of course pies. I have made pumpkin seeds and let me tell you while they are tasty in so many things I had trouble the first few batches I did. Following internet recipes left me with burned husks that were not edible even to the squirrels and chipmunks that live in my yard.
So here is what I did finally to get it right and now when I make them the local kids EAT them all before I can do anything else!
homemade pumpkin seeds
fresh pumpkin seeds
1/2 c margarine or butter, melted
When making your jack o lantern be sure to save out your seeds.
Place them into a colander/strainer and rinse with warm water to work off the pumpkin strings. When they are clean, pat dry with a paper towel. Next coat the pumpkin seeds with the melted butter and pour onto a cookie sheet, spreading evenly. Cover in salt to taste. Then roast at 300 degrees for 30 minutes. Let cool and place in an airtight container.
Now keep an eye on them, you might need more or less time depending on your oven.
For those of you who have been wondering where I went over the past few weeks well I have been working on turning my novels, collections and illustrated stories into sellable books. I have turned a lot of my work into paperbacks hoping that I will get some more attention.
If you are interested you can find my paperbacks of the following books on Amazon.
As Lisa Williamson
Fall Into Nightmares
Death Walks Through
Distance Means Little to Love
Echoes of Elder Times
Where Angels No Longer Tread
Generations of Love
Guardians of the Gate City
Love Loss and Lonelines
Magic and Nightmares
Mythos of Love
Quick Flashes of Fiction
Reflections in Drabble
To Save Face or Family
As LA Mason
If I could Fly
Yes I have others I haven’t yet turned into paperbacks but I am taking a break because it can be very frustrating to do this. I am still working on the various illustrated stories I have been posting. I need to remove my handwritten words and type them in to be easier to read. I have also discovered that the multiple tales I have need more work to be considered finished. Hopefully the children’s and young adult stories will catch an audience.
For those of you who have read my work, I do thank you. While very few of you have gone on to review them at least a handful of you have tried out my various stories.
I will get back to publishing on my various blogs the items that they are for. Expect new tales, new reviews, new photos, new recipes and so much more when possible.
Just sorting through all my recipes to see what I have and have not posted folks. Between getting a new children’s book out, putting together a paperback copy, photo runs,kit builds, digital and pencil art projects, family visiting, inspections coming up and new games I am playing to review and earn money I just have not had time.
I will hopefully be back on the ball by next week but with school soon starting for the year I will be getting my daughter ready and setting up sales on her way too quickly out grown clothing…be patient. There will be new and yummy or interesting bits coming soon.
As you readers have seen better I have done a blog on rendering down pork fat. Well after a little research I realized that you can do the same with left over chicken parts. Everything from the skin to the white fat that is trimmed off the chicken when you buy prepared breasts.
Since we buy the cheapest parts you can find generally I have a lot of little bits of meat etc left on the bones. I toss the skin, the fat and the bones into my crockpot to cook off the meat. After straining the meat and bones out of the sauce/soupy parts you can just pour it into a clean, recycled jar, let cool and then place in your frig for use with stir fries and simmered dishes. It works great as a base for sauces too.
Okay any who have been following me for a while know that I make muffins at least three times a week. Sometimes I run out of fresh fruit to toss in so I have to adapt.
You will need the basic muffin recipe:
1 c sugar
1 1/2 c flour
2 t baking powder
1 t salt
1 c milk
1/4 cup oil
And now the difference. Yesterday I put up the recipe of the Banana jam I made. I hadn’t realized we were out of muffins till after I made the jam so I decided what the heck toss in some of the jam.
2 T banana jam
Mix it all together and bake for 30 minutes in a 350 oven. Let cook and taste. Not knock you out banana flavor but quite nice. Just another use for all the jam you have hopefully been trying!
Okay this is more in the line of a jam but when done it looks a lot like banana butter. It is sweet, brown and filled with little lumps of banana pieces. I didn’t blend this but cooked it on the stove top.
What you will need is the following
4 very ripe bananas (if they are squishy dont worry gives it deeper banana flavor)
1 cup sugar
1 t cinnamon
1 cup water
1 T chai seeds
First you mash up your bananas and place them in a pot. Pour in your other ingredients and stir well with a whisk as you heat up to a boil. Once boiling turn the heat down low and let simmer for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Make sure to keep an eye on it as it will thick up quite a bit and you dont want burned bananas.
Once it does pour it into clean, recycled glass jars and screw the caps on. Let it cool a little before putting in the refrigerator over night. By morning you should have something great on oatmeal, toast or waffles. Enjoy.