So many things to do with pumpkin

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Kitchen Adventures

By Becca Owsley

If you think the only things you can do with a pumpkin are carve it or make a pie then you’ve been missing out on some pumpkin deliciousness.

Some of my favorite fall desserts come from a pumpkin and the possibilities are endless. My grandmother always supplies pumpkin pies for family gatherings, but sometimes I like to get a little creative.

One of my favorite pumpkin recipes is one I stumbled upon in a Pampered Chef cookbook years ago. It is a Pumpkin Ribbon Cake. What makes this dish good is it not only has the typical taste of a pumpkin cake or pumpkin bread but ribboned between the layers is a cream cheese filling. It not only tastes great but looks amazing when served.

The other cool thing about this dish is it doesn’t use icing. Instead you sprinkle powdered sugar on top of it.

If you decide to get a little creative you can use a stencil to create a design on top. All you do is put the stencil on top of the cake and then shake powdered sugar over it. When you remove the stencil a design will remain on top. Just remember to either let the cake cool first or wait until serving to shake on the powdered sugar or it will absorb into the cake.

The cinnamon spice blend is available commercially and includes nutmeg, allspice and orange zest, among other flavors.

I recently ran across a recipe for pumpkin dip, a lighter dessert for the season that also could be used as an appetizer.

Because it’s made with whipped cream topping, it’s a light and fluffy dip. It can be served from a hollowed out pumpkin or in a fall themed dish.

This recipe makes a large batch so it’s something you could whip up for a large party, divide in half to take to two parties or you could half the recipe to make less. I took it two places and still had plenty of dip.

The recipe suggests serving it with apples or vanilla wafers but I think it would be great with graham crackers, too.

If it’s a kid’s party, you could always serve it with animal crackers for a little extra fun.

Whatever you serve it with, the dip is pretty tasty.

Becca Owsley can be reached at (270) 505-1741 or bowsley@thenewsenterprise.com.

Pumpkin Dip
15-ounce can of pumpkin
5-ounce box of instant vanilla pudding (just the powder, don’t make the pudding)
16-ounce container of frozen whipped cream topping, thawed
Small pumpkin
½ tablespoon of pumpkin pie spice
½ tablespoon cinnamon

Mix pumpkin, pudding mix, cool whip and pumpkin pie spice by hand in a very large bowl.

Chill for several hours before serving. Meanwhile, carve your pumpkin. Hollow out the inside of the pumpkin so you can place the dip inside for serving.

Sprinkle with cinnamon, and serve with fresh apples slices, vanilla wafers or ginger snaps. 

Recipe from www.northcarolinacharm.blogspot.com

Pumpkin Ribbon Cake
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon spice blend
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
3/4 cup butter or margarine, softened
3 eggs
3/4 cup solid pack pumpkin
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla

1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup granulated sugar

Powdered sugar
Thawed, frozen whipped topping (optional)

Preheat oven to 350°.

Spray a deep dish baker with canola oil. For cake, combine flour, baking powder, spice blend, baking soda and salt in a small batter bowl. Mix well and set aside.

In larger batter bowl, beat sugar and butter until light and fluffy. Add eggs, pumpkin, milk and vanilla; beat well. Slowly add flour mixture to pumpkin mixture. Mix well and set aside.

For the filling, whisk cream cheese and granulated sugar until well blended and smooth. Spread 2-1/2 cups of the cake batter evenly over bottom of the baker. Spoon cream cheese mixture evenly over cake batter; carefully spread over batter using a large spreader. Spoon remaining cake batter over cream cheese mixture and spreading evenly.

Bake 45-50 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool completely.

Before serving, sprinkle cake with powdered sugar using a flour/sugar shaker. Cut into wedges and serve with additional spice blend or whipped cream if desired.

Recipe from Pampered Chef