30 April 2009

Orange Desserts

Orange Cupcakes

Tuesday night was a crazy night. Somehow I missed 2 ingredients I needed for the beef curry, so I had to pull some food out of the freezer. Luckily I had cooked up some brown rice to go with the curry. Dinner turned out tasty, and very healthy, but not what was planned. We ate homemade chicken soup with brown rice and a delicious salad with homemade dressing (a basic vinaigrette).

I don't like having to pull food from the freezer because it means there is less in there for times when we really are having a food emergency, and it pulls from the lunch supply. It also means that I have to somehow make more food for the freezer out of the recipes for the week without going over budget.

Last night we finally had the curry, but I used green bell peppers in place of the red bell peppers. Since it was a Thai red curry the red bell peppers would have been tastier. Silly me also went to the grocery store yesterday and forgot the fresh basil for the dish because I didn't write it on the board. I ended up using dried. The meal still tasted delicious, but it certainly wasn't pretty enough for me to think of taking pictures of it.

I used the green bell peppers because red ones aren't in season here yet, and the ones the grocery store had are from Mexico and didn't look ripe enough. I know that green bell peppers are simply unripe red peppers, but I had just been listening to "Animal, Vegetable, Miracle" and so I also would have felt rather guilty buying peppers from Mexico when there were perfectly good looking green peppers from Hawaii sitting right next to them.

As you can see from the picture at the top of the post I am not a food photographer, but there was something worth taking a picture of. In fact, there will be two pictures in this post. The picture at the top is from Tuesday night. I whipped up some orange cake cupcakes from Karina's Kitchen. Silly me didn't want to wait for the cupcakes to cool, nor did I chill the frosting, so it just slid right off. It didn't even completely act like a glaze. However, the icing was so good that it didn't end up in the garbage. In fact, I ate 3 the night I baked them, bargained for half of one from the Nerd after lunch yesterday, and had one last night. When there are gluten-free baked goodies around I can't help myself. It's probably a good thing that I don't bake that often or else I might turn into a giant cupcake.

The recipe can be found here, along with a much prettier picture.

Last night's dessert was beautiful, delicious, and healthy. The Nerd's sister brought over 2 medium size pumpkins which I should have taken a picture of. They were allowed to sit for nearly 10 months after being picked, so the flavors really had time to develop and the pumpkin sweetened nicely. The pumpkins were supposed to become a side dish for the curry, but I decided to make a second dessert out of them. This was probably a good idea because the cupcakes were very sweet, so it was a good step up from spicy curry to super sweet cupcakes.

Pumpkin Puddin'

Pumpkin Puddin'
by AmandaonMaui
Dairy-free, Gluten-free

  • 2 medium sized pumpkins, smaller than basketballs
  • 1/2 cup of soy milk
  • 1/4 cup agave nectar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground cloves
  • a pinch of nutmeg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • Unsweetened Coconut Flakes (optional)

Cut around the stem on the pumpkins and remove the top.

Cut the pumpkin into smaller, easier to handle chunks.

Scrape the seeds and stringy parts off of the pumpkin flesh. Discard, or save the seeds for roasting later.

Chop the large chunks into 1-2 inch pieces, leaving the skin on.

Put the pieces into a large stockpot and cover with water, at least one inch over the pieces.

Place the pot on the stove and bring the water to a boil over high heat.

Once the water reaches a full boil, lower the temperature to medium and let simmer until the pumpkin flesh is tender.

Drain the water off of the pieces by using a large colander.

Let the pumpkin pieces cool for a few minutes until they're still warm, but cool enough to handle.

Take each piece by the skin, and scrape off, or squeeze the flesh off of the skin into a blender or food processor.

Continue this process with the rest of the pumpkin. This should equal about 4 cups unpacked cooked pumpkin.

Blend the pumpkin until it starts to become a smooth consistency, and add in a little of the milk at a time, continuing to blend after each addition, until the pudding is at a consistency you like.

Add in the rest of the ingredients, and blend until all of the ingredients are well incorporated.

Pour into a large bowl and chill until dessert time.

Serve in dessert cups or wine glasses, or whatever you have available.

Top with unsweetened flaked coconut, crushed pecans, or whatever toppings you like on pumpkin-y treats.

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