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Jo-Anna@APrettyLife

Pumpkin Pie (or Butternut Squash Pie)

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A classic Pumpkin Pie recipe.

There really is no dessert more classic for Thanksgiving than Pumpkin Pie.  Even after a big dinner, and a turkey filled belly, there’s always room for pumpkin pie. With a big scoop of whipped cream.  Oh my.

Pumpkin Pie

Pumpkin pie made with homemade pumpkin puree is the absolute best kind of pumpkin pie.  I do use canned pumpkin which is delicious, but a freshly made pumpkin puree is ah-mazing in a pie.  Just make sure to use baking or sugar pumpkins for your pumpkin puree…Halloween pumpkins are not great for pies!

But did you know that you can also use pretty much any kind of fresh squash puree in a pie?  It’s true.  I have made butternut squash pies with homemade butternut squash puree, and they are delicious.  They’re very similar to pumpkin pie, but I actually think they’re a little more creamy and rich…so so good.

The big question though, is do you take your pumpkin pie with whipped cream, or a scoop of vanilla ice cream?

Pumpkin Pie

This recipe makes enough filling for 1 pie.  But if you wish, you can double the recipe to make 2 pies.  Enjoy!

RollingPin

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Pumpkin Pie

You can use pumpkin puree or butternut squash puree for this pie. 

Servings 1 Pie
Author Jo-Anna@APrettyLife

Ingredients

Pie Crust:

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2/3 cup shortening (lard)
  • 1/4 cup water

Pumpkin Pie Filling:

  • 2 cups pureed pumpkin * See Notes *
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups light cream
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp cloves
  • 1/4 tsp salt

Instructions

Making the Pie Crust:

  1. Make your pie crust first.

  2. Sift the flour and salt into a bowl.

  3. With a pie cutter, cut in the shortening until the particles are pea sized.

  4. Sprinkle in the water, 1 tsp or so at a time, mixing lightly with a fork. Don't over mix or the crust will be tough.

  5. Press into a ball. It is okay if it is crumbly. In fact crumbly makes for a tender, flaky crust!
  6. This recipe makes 2 - 9" crusts, so split the ball in 2, and freeze one half for later.
  7. Press the crust into a 9" pie plate.
  8. Bake the empty crust in a preheated 400 degree oven for 20 minutes. To do that, cover the pie dough with tin foil, making sure all the edges are covered. Fill the liner with rice to keep the crust flat during baking (see the picture below).
  9. When the crust is done, remove it from the oven, and turn your oven down to 375 degrees.

Making the Pie Filling:

  1. While the crust is baking, make the pie filling.

  2. In a bowl whisk together the eggs.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine pumpkin puree, cream, sugars and spices.

  4. Then add the whisked eggs to the pumpkin mixture, and mix thoroughly.

  5. Pour the pie filling into the hot pie crust, and bake in a 375 degree oven for 35 to 45 minutes more. You will know the pie filling is set by when you move the dish, and the centre of the filling moves like gelatin. Not watery, but gelatin-y.
  6. Let the pie cool completely before serving. It needs this time for the filling to set completely.
  7. Serve with ice cream or whipping cream! Yum yum!

Recipe Notes

You can also use butternut squash puree for this pie.

(adapted from the Joy of Cooking)

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Tips!

  • Did you know that you can also use butternut squash puree instead of pumpkin puree to make a pie?  I once made a butternut squash pie, and it was SO delicious.  It’s creamy, rich and so good…you should try one!
  • There is a debate about whether you actually need to bake the crust first before adding the filling.  I baked mine first, and I loved how it turned out!  To each their own I suppose!

More Delicious Pie Recipes:

Do you take your pumpkin pie with whipped cream, or a scoop of vanilla ice cream?

Have a delicious day!

This post was originally published in November 2011, but I recently updated the post with new pictures!

Halloween Decorating Ideas

Here are some Halloween Decorating Ideas to inspire you this spooky season!

I really love to decorate inside our home for Halloween.  I love the transition from a simply decorated fall home, to a spooky but fun Halloween house.  But I especially love that the kids love it.  For them, it adds to the excitement that Halloween is coming!

Halloween Decorating Ideas

This year I changed things up in the Halloween decor department.  I try very hard not to over complicate things, and use a lot of the same decorations from past years.  But this year I was in Michaels in August, and their shelves were FULL of amazing Halloween decorations.  I try not to get tempted, but I saw these fuzzy black and white skull pillows, and decided right then and there, that I had to have them.

Halloween Decorating Ideas: Halloween Mantel

And then one thing led to another, and the next thing I knew I had a cart full of pumpkins, pillows, string art, candle holders…and on and on.  But I can use it all again next year.  Decorating our home for the seasons, is just what I like to do, so I gave in to a little temptation this year, and I love how it all turned out!

Halloween Decorating Ideas

Skulls, crows, spiders…oh my.

Halloween Decorating Ideas

Purple lights for nighttime fun.

Halloween Decorating Ideas

Candles, pillows and all the things that make for a fun Halloween living room.

Halloween Decorating Ideas

More Halloween Decorating Ideas:

Easy, Hearty, and Delicious Vegetarian Meal Ideas

These Easy, Hearty, and Delicious Vegetarian Meal Ideas are sure to satisfy everyone at the dinner table!

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Hearty and healthy vegetarian dishes are a welcome addition to our dinner rotation!  I especially love vegetarian options because they are easy to create and they’re delicious.  If you’re looking to add some non-meat options to your own dinner rotation, I’ve gathered up some delicious vegetarian meal ideas for you.  You won’t even miss the meat!

Vegetarian Stuffed Peppers

These Vegetarian Stuffed Peppers are a delicious meal idea!  They’re loaded up with rice, beans, vegetables and topped with cheese.  They’re hearty, healthy and really really tasty.  I’m sharing this recipe over on the Kendall-Jackson blog, so make sure you head over to grab it!

Winter Vegetable Soup

This Winter Vegetable Soup is loaded with vegetables…chickpeas, cauliflower, tomatoes, cabbage and more.  This recipe makes a big batch, so it’s big enough to share!  Serve it up with fresh Mozzarella & Parmesan Buttermilk Quick Bread.

One Pot Coconut Chickpea Dinner

This quick and healthy One Pot Coconut Chickpea Dinner can be on your table in less than one hour!  Serve over rice and with fresh cilantro.

Corn Chowder

Have this hearty Corn & Potato Chowder on your dinner table in less than 45 minutes!  Serve with fresh bread and a salad for a full meal.

Roasted Tomato Pasta Dinner

This Roasted Tomato Pasta Dinner is a healthy and delicious dinner that can be on your table in under 1 hour.  Made with ancient grains pasta, and loaded with fresh vegetables!

Creamy Butternut Squash Dinner

This Creamy Butternut Squash Dinner is a healthy and delicious dinner.  It’s creamy and so flavourful!  And made with one entire butternut squash!

Roasted Tomato & Pumpkin Soup

Serve this Roasted Tomato & Pumpkin Soup with a dollop of sour cream, a loaf of warm crusty bread and a glass of white wine and you’ve got dinner heaven!

SO many delicious vegetarian options, that will leave you feeling satisfied!

Have a delicious day!

Disclosure:  This post has been sponsored by Kendall-Jackson wines!  But as always the pictures, my voice, all content, and opinions are mine alone.

What’s For Dinner? Beef Stroganoff Meatballs Menu

This comforting dinner menu includes Beef Stroganoff Meatballs, egg noodles, glazed carrots, a simple tomato salad and carrot cake for dessert!

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Welcome back to What’s For Dinner!  This week it’s all about comforting fall & winter meals.  Think delicious and hearty meatballs with noodles, seasonal side dishes, and cake for dessert!  So good. And all very easy to assemble.  In fact, you can have this Beef Stroganoff Meatballs dinner on your table in 1 hour or less!

Beef Stroganoff Meatballs Menu

  • Main Dish:  Beef Stroganoff Meatballs with egg noodles
  • Side Dish:  Glazed Carrots
  • Side Salad: Tomato Salad with Basil Balsamic Vinaigrette
  • Dessert:  Carrot Cake Sheet Cake

Beef Stroganoff Meatballs

These Beef Stroganoff Meatballs are delicious and hearty, and ready in less than 1 hour!  Serve with egg noodles, or any favourite noodle.

Glazed Carrots

Glazed Carrots are our most favourite way to enjoy cooked carrots.  They’re buttery and a little bit salty and a little bit sweet. Yum.

Fresh Tomato Salad with Basil Balsamic Vinaigrette

This Fresh Tomato Salad with Basil Balsamic Vinaigrette can be made in 15 minutes, and is a great side dish.  Tomatoes paired with fresh basil, it just doesn’t get more delicious than this.

Carrot Cake Sheet Cake

This Carrot Cake Sheet Cake with a Cream Cheese Frosting is tender, sweet and so delicious!  This recipe is made with less oil than many other carrot cake recipes, making it a little more healthy.

I hope you enjoy this dinner menu!

More What’s For Dinner Menu Ideas:

Want more menu ideas?

Sign up for my weekly e-mail and you will have some delicious meal menus delivered to your inbox…complete with a main course, salads or side dishes, and a dessert!  Sign up here!

Have a delicious day!

Apple Coffee Cake

This Apple Coffee Cake is a delicious cake for dessert, coffee dates with friends, or as a snacking cake! Delicious vanilla and apple flavours!

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A few years ago when my babies were teeny tiny, I used to get together with friends so us moms could visit each other with our babies.  Those days were some of my favourite times…I miss them. Sigh.  One of the things we always used to do when we got together was bake something when it was our time to host.  Then we’d eat it all over copius cups of coffee…so good! We had a lot of delicious baking during those days, but there was one recipe in particular that I loved, and it was this Apple Coffee Cake that an old friend made.  I loved it then, and now it’s a family favourite….

Apple Coffee Cake

For Thanksgiving this year I decided to make this Apple Coffee Cake and take it home to my parents.  So on the day we planned to travel, I made this cake and the first one I made I measured the butter wrong.  Seriously, how many times have I baked a cake?!  But I accidentally got distracted, as I sometimes do, and I doubled the butter.  So the cake came out a gooey buttery mess, and I had to throw it out.  Throwing food out pains me.  Pains me.  But there was no salvaging it.  So luckily, I had time left to bake another cake before we had to go, and this one turned out beautifully.  I snapped some pictures so I could update this post, and we set out to my parents for Thanksgiving.

We stopped halfway through our drive to grab some dinner, and guess what I did?  I left the cake in the truck with our pup Molly.  Yes, yes I did.  I left a fresh, tasty and delicious apple cake in the truck with a dog.  But in fairness…I don’t often travel with cakes so I wasn’t thinking straight?  I’ll go with that.

You can guess what happened.

Yep.  She ate 3/4 of my lovingly made Apple Bundt Cake.  Insert annoyed emoji here.  This cake was just not meant to be I guess.

Apple Coffee Cake

But we’ll just remember that it looked like this mmmkay?  Anyway, you should make it.  It’s a really delicious cake I promise.

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Apple Coffee Cake

A delicious Bundt cake recipe.

Author Jo-Anna@APrettyLife

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 cups flour
  • 4 tsp baking powder
  • 1 cup milk
  • 3 apples peeled and chopped
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar

Instructions

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

  2. Prepare your Bundt pan. You can either flour and butter your pan, or use a flour spray (this is my preferred method).  Set aside.

  3. In a bowl, combine the chopped apples, cinnamon and brown sugar. Let the mixture sit while you combine the rest of the ingredients.

  4. In another mixing bowl, cream together the butter and sugar.

  5. Add the eggs, one at a time.

  6. Then add the vanilla.

  7. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour and baking powder.

  8. To the butter mix, add 1/3 of the flour mix, then 1/2 of the milk. Repeat until all of the ingredients are combined.

  9. Place large spoonfuls of the cake batter around the bottom of the pan, followed with the apple mixture, and repeat until finished.

  10. Bake for 45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean.

  11. Let cool for about 10 minutes in the pan, then turn the cake out onto a plate, and sprinkle with sugar.

This post was originally published in Jan 2011, but I recently updated the post with new pictures!

Puffed Wheat Squares

These Puffed Wheat Squares are a classic dessert right out of childhood!  This No-Bake, simple to make treat is a crowd pleaser!

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Who remembers puffed wheat squares from their childhood?!  Puffed wheat squares are the best! My mom used to make them for my sister & I when we were young, and now I make them for my own kids.  And every time I make them, I’m reminded how much I really love this little treat…but they have to be soft.  No hard as a rock puffed wheat squares are accepted over here!  I like them pull-apart soft and chewy, so I actually add a little less than the recommended amount of puffed wheat.

Puffed Wheat Squares

Chocolatey.  Soft.  Chewy.  Delicious.  I could eat the whole pan.  For real.  I have to keep these up on the high shelf because I actually can’t resist them.

Puffed Wheat Squares

I hope you enjoy these as much as we do!

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Puffed Wheat Squares

Make in an 8 x 8 pan.

Author Jo-Anna@APrettyLife

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup corn syrup
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 6 cups puffed wheat

Instructions

  1. In a saucepan over low/medium heat, bring the butter, corn syrup, sugars and cocoa powder to a low boil. Stir continuously.

  2. Once the mixture comes to a boil, remove it from the heat, and stir in the vanilla.
  3. Pour the chocolate mixture over the puffed wheat, and mix well.

  4. Press the mixture into a greased 8 x 8 inch pan.

 
Recipe from Best of Bridge
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Puffed Wheat Squares
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So fun.  So sticky.  So yummy!

More Delicious No-Bake Treats:

This post was originally published in May 2012, but I recently updated the post with new pictures!

Turkey & Brown Rice Soup

This Turkey Brown Rice Soup is a great way to use up turkey dinner leftovers!  It’s simple to make, and so delicious!

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This soup is one of my favourites to make. It’s hearty, loaded with turkey, vegetables and rice, making it so comforting.  And it’s a perfect soup for all of your holiday turkey dinner leftovers!  I love being able to use up turkey dinner leftovers and create a brand new meal.  

Sometimes I’ll make homemade stock from the turkey carcass and use it to make this soup, even though I’m often exhausted (in a good way) after hosting holiday dinners.  But when I do actually make stock I’m always so glad that I took the time to make it for the base of this soup.  It’s very easy, and so satisfying to know it was homemade!  But sometimes we don’t feel like making stock, and that is just fine!  Pre-made chicken or vegetable stock is perfect in this recipe.

Turkey Brown Rice Soup

For this soup, I add as many leftovers from our turkey dinner as I can…including leftover Wild Rice Stuffing (I just remove the raisins).  If there are leftover carrots or green beans, I add those too.  It’s a great way to breathe new life into leftovers!

Turkey Brown Rice Soup

This recipe makes quite a big batch, and will feed the 5 of us for one dinner, then I can send the remaining soup with the kids in their lunches for school the next day.  Kids love getting soup in their thermoses!

Turkey Brown Rice Soup

I love to serve this soup with my Braided Pumpkin Bread…together is is the perfect cozy supper.  Enjoy!

Whisk

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Turkey and Brown Rice Soup

Servings 8
Author Jo-Anna@APrettyLife

Ingredients

  • 6 cups turkey or chicken stock
  • salt (if necessary, adjust to taste)
  • pepper
  • 1/2 - 3/4 cup uncooked brown rice
  • 2 - 4 cups leftover turkey meat shredded or finely chopped (basically use as much as you would like)
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 2 - 3 carrots chopped
  • 2 celery sticks chopped
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 1/4 tsp thyme
  • 1 1/2 cups peas or green beans

Instructions

  1. Bring your stock to a low boil, then add the rice. Cook until the rice is done.  See notes.

  2. While the rice is simmering, saute the carrots, celery and onion in the butter until soft. Stir in the thyme.  Set aside.

  3. Once the rice has cooked, add the cooked vegetables and turkey.
  4. Simmer gently for about 20 minutes.
  5. Add peas, simmer for about 5 more minutes.  See notes.

Recipe Notes

  • If you have leftover rice, instead of adding uncooked rice, add your leftover rice about 15 minutes before you serve the soup.
  • Add leftover carrots, green beans, basically anything you think would taste great in soup! I've even added chickpeas!

Recipe Tips!

  • If you have leftover rice, instead of adding uncooked rice, add your leftover rice about 15 minutes before you serve the soup.
  • Add leftover carrots, green beans, basically anything you think would taste great in soup! I’ve even added chickpeas.
  • You can use this recipe as a base for Chicken Noodle Soup, or a Chicken & Rice Soup.
  • Use what ever ingredient ratios you like…the more, the heartier!
  • This soup is also very good with wild rice.
  • Serve with Sweet Potato Biscuits

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This recipe was originally posted in October of 2011.  I just updated the pictures and reposted!