Sunday, October 31, 2010

Cake for breakfast?

Every chance I get, I look for a reason to incorporate Carrot Cake into my every-day meals.
One morning I woke up to the thoughts of Oatmeal and Carrot Cake and figured nothing could be more perfect than combining the two!
Carrot Cake Oatmeal is a nutritious breakfast option that can allow you to have cake everyday, not just on your birthday!
Simply the most perfect combination of sweetness and spices with a crunch.

 Carrot Cake Oatmeal
Author: Brenna Bowers
Serving: 2, (1/2 cup each)
2 cups low-fat milk
½ a large carrot, peeled and shredded
½+a pinch tsp cinnamon
1/8 nutmeg
1/4 tsp maple flavoring
1 cup quick oats
2 Tbs brown sugar
¼ cup pecans, chopped
1/8 cup sweetened coconut (or raisins)

Frosting (optional):
½ cup vanilla yogurt
2Tbs maple syrup

In a saucepot combine milk, shredded carrot, cinnamon, nutmeg, and maple flavoring. Bring to a boil. Stir in oatmeal, pecans and coconut/raisins and take off heat. Place lid on, trapping the steam and set aside for 5 minutes for the oatmeal to set up.

Frosting (optional):
In a small bowl, stir together yogurt and maple syrup. Top each serving with a dollop of frosting and enjoy!

 *Brenna would love to hear of your favorite oatmeal combination. I would happily write a recipe for you!

Saturday, October 30, 2010

"Fall"-ing for some pie...

A trip to Julian, CA was all I needed to be inspired to create a recipe of Apple Pumpkin Crumble Pie.  The beautiful countryside was filled with the sweet smell of ripened apples and was the perfect ingredient for the base of my pie! Just add a hint of a Fall pumpkin and a dash of crumble topping and you have a festive Harvest Time pie to share with your friends and family. 

Apple Pumpkin Crumble Pie with Cinnamon Ice Cream
Author: Brenna Bowers
Serving: Two, 9" pies 

This is a sweet dessert pie that is full of  Fall flavors, cinnamon and nutmeg. The essence of these spices are detected from the gooey apple bottom, to the moist pumpkin portion, all the way to the crumbly topping. Hand-mixed Cinnamon Ice Cream is the perfect accompaniment for this festive dessert.
Homemade pie crusts are delicious in flavor, challenge yourself to make one from scratch!
Peel, core, and slice the apples. Saute butter and apples in a pan on low and slow heat until they are tender when pricked with a fork and look like this...
Only after the apple mixture has cooled completely can it be placed in the pie crust that has been dusted with quick oats to keep the apples from becoming soupy.
Pumpkin Pie mixture (taste it and add more spices to your liking)
Pour the pumpkin pie mixture over the apples and place the pie in the oven to bake at 425F for 20 minutes. (Partial-baking allows the pumpkin pie mixture to begin setting up, keeps the crumble mixture from falling into the center of the pie when it is placed on top, and reduces the chance of burning.)

Mix the dry ingredients of the crumble topping together and add the chilled butter in pieces. Use a fork to "cut" in the butter forming a crumbly mixture. Use your fingers (if they are not too warm) if needed to make the mixture into pea-size crumbles.
Once the pie has baked about 20 minutes, remove from the oven and sprinkle generously with the crumble mixture. Place back into the oven to fully cook and reduce the heat to 350 F. Bake until all is golden brown and a knife comes out clean when pierced into the center.
Mmmmm, take a look at the apple mixture on the bottom and the pumpkin pie mixture filling all the crevices!
Serve with hand-mixed Cinnamon Ice Cream to perfect this dessert.

2 Pie Shells, unbaked

Apple Pie Portion:
8 large Granny Smith* apples
1 tsp lemon juice
3 Tbs butter
½ cup white sugar
½ cup brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp nutmeg, allspice, salt
2 Tbs flour
1/8 cup oatmeal

Pumpkin Pie Portion:
4 eggs, slightly beaten
1 (29 oz.) can Libby's solid pack pumpkin
2 (13 oz.) cans evaporated milk
1 1/2 c. sugar
1 tsp. salt
2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 tsp. ground cloves

Crumble Topping:
1 ½ cups flour
1 ½ cups quick oats
½ cup chopped nuts
¾ cup brown sugar
1 stick chilled butter, cut into pieces

Cinnamon Ice Cream:
1 Qt. French Vanilla Ice Cream
2-3 Tbs Cinnamon (or more!)

Make pie crust and place in pie plate (unbaked).

To prepare the Apple Pie Portion:
Peel, core, and thinly slice apples (Tip 1). Place butter in a large sauce pan (or cast iron skillet) and melt on medium high heat. Add prepared apples and stir to coat with the melted butter. Cover and let simmer 7-10 minutes, stirring every once in a while. The apples should get slightly softer with the prick of a fork.
In another bowl mix the brown sugar, white sugar, and spices. Toss into the softened apple mixture and stir. Coat the apples evenly and bring to a boil. Boil the mixture about 3 minutes until it becomes syrupy. Remove from heat and stir in flour. Let the apple mixture rest and cool for at least 15 minutes.
Place the quick oats in the bottom of your pie shell (Tip 2). Once the apple mixture is cooled (Tip 3), pour it on top of the oats.

To prepare the Pumpkin Pie Portion:
In a large bowl, beat the eggs until frothy. Add the canned pumpkin and evaporated milk and stir. Add all the rest of the ingredients and mix until well combined.

Pour the pumpkin pie mixture over the apples.
(Now you are going to bake it for a few minutes before putting on the crumble topping).

Preheat oven to 425 F degrees. Bake the pies for 20 minutes. Remove from the oven.

Prepare Crumble Topping:
Combine all of the dry ingredients in a small bowl. Cut in butter into small pieces and with a fork smash the butter into the dry mixture. Continue this process until the mixture is crumbly (no bigger than the size of a pea). Sprinkle the crumble mixture evenly over the partially-baked pies.

Reduce the oven temperature to 350 F degrees and bake the pies an additional 40 minutes or until knife inserted near into center of each pie comes out clean (Tip 4).
Cinnamon Ice Cream
Place the vanilla ice cream in a large bowl, stir in cinnamon until it is evenly distributed. Taste it and see if it needs more flavor and if so, add more! Place back into the ice cream container and re-freeze until it is ready to be served with the Apple Pumpkin Crumble Pie.

Let the pie cool about 20 minutes allowing it to continue setting up and slice easier and serve with the Cinnamon Ice Cream. Enjoy! 

Tip 1: When peeling and slicing the apples, toss with lemon juice to keep them from turning brown.
Tip 2: Placing the oats on the pie crust before the apple mixture goes in helps to soak up the liquid and keeps your pie from becoming soup-like.
Tip 3: It is necessary to cool the apple mixture for you do not want the heat to melt the butter in your pie crust and cause it to disintegrate.
Tip 4: if the crumble topping is getting brown and the apple pumpkin mixture is not yet cooked through, cover the pies with foil and place them back into the oven.

* I, Brenna, would love to hear how your pie turned out! I truly think you will love it :)