Fall is here….time for the smell of pumpkin spice, cinnamon and apples to fill the air. One of the easiest ways to make your home smell like fall is a simmer pot. The range of scents you can get from a simmer pot recipe varies as much as the ingredients do. Whether you’re after sniffs of pumpkin, hints of cinnamon, or a few notes of lemon, there is a perfect combination of fruit and spices out there for every autumn soul. One simple recipe is to use orange & lemon slices (with peel,) fresh cranberries, a couple of cinnamon sticks & a tablespoon of cloves. Add 4 cups of water, bring to a boil & then simmer on low heat. But our focus today is on pumpkin. Naturally scent your home without spraying chemicals. All you need is a tablespoon of pumpkin spice, 1 tsp of nutmeg & 3 cinnamon sticks. Add ingredients to 2 cups of boiling and then simmer on low heat. Make sure & check the water levels every hour.
- 1 1/2 cups crushed graham cracker
- 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
- 1/3 cup butter-melted
- 3 (8-ounce) blocks cream cheese, softened
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 eggs
- 15-ounce can pumpkin purée
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
- 5-ounce can evaporated milk
- Chocolate syrup, for drizzling
- In a bowl combine the crushed graham cracker, sugar and ginger. Melt the butter and stir into mixture.
- Spray bottom and sides of a 9-inch springform pan. Press crust mixture into bottom of pan using your hands.
- Place pan on a large piece of foil and wrap foil tightly up sides and around pan.
For cheesecake filling:
- Preheat oven to 325°F.
- Beat cream cheese, brown sugar, and granulated sugar together in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Scrape down sides of bowl.
- Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Scrape down sides of bowl.
- Whisk together pumpkin purée, cornstarch, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a medium bowl until well combined. Add pumpkin mixture to cream cheese mixture, beating until well combined. Scrape down sides of bowl. Add evaporated milk, mixing well.
- Slowly pour cheesecake filling onto crust mixture in prepared pan. Drizzle with chocolate syrup.
- Place foil-wrapped pan inside a larger roasting pan. Place oven rack and carefully add enough hot water to reach halfway up sides of springform pan.
- Bake 1 hour, or until center moves only slightly when shaken.
- Turn oven off. Crack open oven door, and allow cheesecake to cool inside oven 1 hour.
- Remove pan from water bath and set on a wire rack to cool completely. Cover top of pan with foil and refrigerate for at least 4 hours and up to overnight.
Cook’s Notes: Wrapping foil around springform pan prevents water from the water bath from getting into the cheesecake. The slow cooling inside the oven prevents cheesecake top from cracking.
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon plus 1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice, divided
1 tablespoon instant pectin
1 cup pumpkin puree
3 (17.3-ounce) boxes (6 sheets) frozen puff pastry, thawed
1 tablespoon milk
1/2 cup sanding sugar
- Combine brown sugar, granulated sugar, 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice, and instant pectin in a medium bowl. Stir in pumpkin puree until well combined. Refrigerate until ready to use.
- Place one sheet of puff pastry onto a lightly floured, movable, flat surface, such as a lightweight cutting board. Lightly dust surface of pastry with flour and roll lightly just to smooth creases.
- Spread with 1/3 cup of pumpkin mixture, stopping 1/4-inch from edges.
- Roll a second sheet of puff pastry on a lightly floured surface to smooth creases; place on top of first sheet and press down gently. Repeat process two more times with remaining pastry sheets and remaining filling. Refrigerate filled pastry 15 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a nonstick silicone mat.
- Working with one filled pastry at a time, cut into 1 1/2-inch strips.
- Place strips on baking sheet spacing about 1/2-inch apart. Carefully lift strips and twist each 3 times before laying down. (Leave remaining filled pastry in refrigerator until ready to bake.)
- Mix together coarse sugar and remaining 1 tablespoon pumpkin spice.
- Beat egg and milk together in a small bowl. Using a pastry brush, brush each twist with egg wash and evenly sprinkle evenly with coarse sugar mixture.
- Bake 22 to 24 minutes, or until puffed and golden brown. Cool on baking sheet 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Repeat process two more times, cutting and baking one remaining filled pastry at a time.
Cook’s Notes: To make pumpkin pie spice at home, combine 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon, 2 teaspoons ground nutmeg, 2 teaspoons ground ginger, and 1 teaspoon ground allspice.
Sanding sugar is larger, polished grains of sugar – about four times larger than those in granulated sugar. Because the sugar crystal grains are large and reflect light, they give off a “sparkling” effect. The large-grained sugar won’t melt and disappear as it bakes, giving a nice crunch to dessert topping.
1 cup cake flour
1 cup bread flour (may substitute all-purpose flour)
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 5-ounce can pumpkin purée
1 cup golden raisins
2 tablespoons all purpose flour
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 tablespoons (packed) dark brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 pinch salt
1 tablespoon cold unsalted butter
- Preheat oven to 375°F and line a muffin pan with paper liners. Set aside.
- Sift together cake flour, all-purpose flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and nutmeg into a large bowl. Set aside.
- Beat together sugar and eggs until pale yellow in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Blend in oil and pumpkin purée until mixture is smooth.
- Blend half of flour mixture into egg mixture until just combined. Scrape sides of bowl, then stir in raisins. Add remaining flour mixture to batter, mixing just until combined.
- Scoop batter into prepared muffin pan, filling about 3/4 full.
- Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl. Mash butter with a fork until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Sprinkle about 1 teaspoon streusel on each muffin.
- Bake 18 minutes, then lower oven temperature to 325°F and bake 5 minutes more or until golden brown.
Club 33, Disneyland Park
Makes 24 beignets
- 1/2 teaspoon dry yeast
- 1/4 cup warm water (105º)
- 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup canned pumpkin puree
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 1/4 cup hot water
- 1 egg
- 2 tablespoons vegetable shortening
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Vegetable oil, for frying
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 1 cup powdered sugar
For pumpkin beignets:
- Sprinkle yeast over warm water in a small bowl, stirring to dissolve. Let stand for 5 minutes.
- Combine flour, pumpkin puree, sugar, heavy cream, hot water, egg, shortening, and salt in a large bowl; stir in yeast mixture. Mix dough just until combined and smooth. Let dough rest in bowl, covered with a clean kitchen towel, 30 minutes.
- Transfer dough to a well-floured surface. Pat to about 1/4-inch thickness and cut into 2-inch squares. Cover with a clean kitchen towel and let dough rise in a warm, draft-free area, about 1 to 1 1/2 hours.
- Heat 3 inches of vegetable oil to 350°F in a deep, heavy pot over medium-high heat. Fry beignets until golden brown, about 2 to 3 minutes, turning as soon as they brown on one side.
- Remove with tongs or a slotted spoon and place on paper towels to drain.
For maple glaze:
- Combine butter and maple syrup in a medium microwave-safe bowl. Microwave until butter melts. Whisk in powdered sugar until smooth.
- Drizzle warm beignets with maple glaze and serve immediately.
Serves 6 to 8
1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons old-fashioned oats
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons flour
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
5 tablespoons butter, melted
1/2 cup apricot jam
1/4 cup orange juice
1 egg yolk or 1/4 cup pasteurized egg yolks
3/4 cup canned pumpkin pie filling
3/4 cup white chocolate chips
1 cup heavy cream
Store-bought spice cake mix, prepared per package directions and cooled
1/2 cup Ocean Spray Craisins
- Preheat oven to 325°F. Line a sheet pan with foil; set aside.
- Combine oats, flour, brown sugar, and sugar in a medium bowl. Add melted butter and stir until mixture is crumbly.
- Pour onto prepared sheet pan; bake 15 to 20 minutes, or until golden brown.
- Set aside to cool; crumble into small pieces.
For orange sauce:
Combine apricot jam and orange juice in a medium bowl. Whisk together until smooth.
For pumpkin mousse:
- Whisk egg yolk into pumpkin pie filling. Melt white chocolate chips in a microwave or using a double boiler. Whisk melted white chocolate into pumpkin mixture.
- Whip heavy cream to medium peaks. Gently fold whipped cream into pumpkin mixture.
- Cut spice cake into cubes. Place a dollop of mousse at the bottom of a serving dish. Top with cranberries and a drizzle of sauce.
- Place a few cubes of cake over mousse. Top with another layer of mousse, cranberries and sauce, then top with streusel.