Pumpkin Challenge: Day 29

The paleo diet – if a caveman (ahem, cave person) wouldn’t eat it, neither do you!

If you could hunt for it and find it in the wild, then it’s yours to eat – nuts, seasonal fruits and veggies, meat, seeds, etc. Essentially, it is a “natural” diet, in that you aren’t dealing with agriculturally-produced foods (sorry, pasta).

This is all information I’ve gathered from the Internet, so take it with a grain of salt (did cave people eat salt?) – but what I am trying to do here, is offer a prelude to today’s pumpkin item:

Paleo Pumpkin Pie Cupcakes! (recipe) (also vegan!)

These photos are pretty awful quality (I blame yellowish lighting and decor), but I believe that they capture the essence of what this recipe turned into: A bit of a squishy, but clean and yummy, treat.

The best part about these was definitely using my mini food processor from Cuisinart! I have only used it twice, but the past two days have been made a whole lot more exciting as a result of it. I described the feeling of using it as a feeling of having a missing piece of my daily life – my mom seems to be okay with this description.

I added some coconut ice cream to make it more “pie”-like, and I would say it worked! I also ate my samples before they had completely cooled, and this may have contributed to how squishy they were. Currently, they are chilling (literally) in my fridge, and I plan to have another go at them tomorrow.


Pumpkin Challenge: Day 28

Tuesday has been a continuation of the trying to cross out my to-do-list items. Tuesday has been a somewhat back-to-back sort of day.

Tuesday was a day to combine my consumption challenges into one item!

A desire to eat something sweet joined forces with a desire to clean out my system and the need to have something pumpkiny, and Simple Green Smoothies answered my call with the Pumpkin Chocolate Chip smoothie.

The combination of spinach and pumpkin may be deceptive, because the reality is – with the magic of fruit, cocoa powder and almond milk – this smoothie is great!

Pumpkin Challenge: Days 23, 24, 25, 26, and 27

In my defence, the Internet was inaccessible where I stayed this weekend.

Then Monday was a bit disorganized and required attention to bring order back to my life.
I don’t have any excuse for how Thursday was left out of the mix.
Now it is Tuesday, and I can provide an update for each pumpkin item that I did consume over the weekend! It was a yummy weekend for pumpkin things, and a self-care weekend for Katie.
Thursday the 23rd: Mini Pumpkin Chocolate-Chip Muffins (vegan) from: Unknown (my Pinterest wall likely has the recipe somewhere…)
The week had been long and I felt that chocolate was in order (as per usual). I felt a need for some therapeutic baking to get me through one more week day, and these little muffins hit the spot! I absolutely love miniature baking.

Friday the 24th: Pumpkin Apple Muffins (vegan) from Minimalist Baker
Holy moly, these muffins were yummy. I mistakenly “sliced” rather than “diced” the apples for the recipe, so the apple portion of the snack was fairly large, and made the muffins a little gooey while you ate them – but that’s okay! They were light and moist and naturally sweet, and I love oats in most any baked good.

Saturday the 25th: Pumpkin Pie Steamed Almond Milk from G.I.’s Blue Parrot Cafe
Since I spent the weekend with my family, I recognized that baking another item during the weekend would be unlikely to be eaten (since my family eats small quantities of everything), so I decided to go for a pumpkin item while I was out, instead. I went to the Blue Parrot Cafe for a nice light steamed almond milk with pumpkin pie flavour!

Sunday the 26th: Pumpkin Waffles (vegan) from My Darling Vegan
To celebrate my parents returning from their trip, I decided that some snack-sized waffles for brunch would be appropriate. I found this recipe from My Darling Vegan, and would happily go back! I think I put too much in the waffle-stick maker, because these didn’t fluff up as much as I had hoped, but they tasted delicious, and that’s really all that matters.

Monday the 27th: Chickpea Pumpkin Fritters (baked) from lunchbox.com
This recipe had sat on my Pumpkin Challenge board on Pinterest for some time, and I am glad that I finally made it yesterday! This were an easy meal/snack to make, and I have several left over that I can use for sides at lunch/dinner, or for a meal! I bet they would turn into soup, as well…

This post has been a bit excessive in order to catch up on everything, but I hope you’re still with me – I only have 4 more pumpkin items to go, and I’m still not sick of it!

Pumpkin Challenge: Day 22

Yesterday, as I pulled out my tools for making miniature pumpkin treats, I was met with a surprise:

My roommate was already going to bake a pumpkin treat!

Since I was having a moment of academic inspiration, I decided to take advantage of this opportunity to keep studying while she took on the mixing and measuring and pumpkin-treat creating.

The flat was very slowly beginning to smell like pumpkin as the oven did it’s thing, and then all at once, about 20 minutes into the baking process, the whole atmosphere smelled of pumpkin spices and fresh-baked goodness.

The recipe used for this pumpkin bread was originally for banana bread, this strategy was something that I was going to try myself, but it turned out my roommate got to it before me!

It was delicious, though, so I might just make my own anyways…

Pumpkin Challenge: Day 21

Today marked a small but exciting event, and since breakfast is the most important/one of my favourite meals of the day, it felt appropriate to start the day off with breakfast being super.

I do not often eat pancakes, but when I do, the day is either going to be tough, and thus requires a breakfast to counter the struggle ahead, or the day is great and deserves a breakfast that reflects it. This day was going to be an energy struggle, but marked a nice day, and so breakfast needed to be good.

Thus – vegan pumpkin pancakes. (recipe from Minimalist Baker)

 


Pumpkin Challenge: Day 20

The Pumpkin Challenge has reached an approximate 2/3 completion, and the majority of the last 20 days have consisted of baked goods. They have been delicious, they have been vegan, they have been relatively healthy in comparison to the average baked good.


However,

it felt necessary to have something a little more savoury today, a little more cooked than baked in its goodness – something that was not a snack, but a meal!

Cue: Veggie Thai Chick’n Pumpkin Soup


This soup was one of those grab-what-you-think-tastes-good out of the fridge kind of deals, so I grabbed a few items that didn’t seem like they would strongly disagree with each other being in the same soup: Pumpkin (obviously), almond milk, vegetable broth, snap peas, ginger…. Hm, it seemed that I was missing something, something that would satisfy my craving to chew that I was experiencing.

Search the freezer, where all random and useful food items are stored…

Ah! Vegetarian thai chicken from my favourite Calgary Farmer’s Market stop: Heart’s Choices!


I thew it all into a slow cooker and left it for less than an hour, and – as I had hoped – the chicken became very tender, like pulled pork, and offered up a lovely texture to make the meal feel more substantial and satisfying.

After so many baked goods, this was just what I needed for my end-of-day meal and pumpkin item!


Pumpkin Challenge: Day 19

Sundays seem to carry a reputation (at least in my mind) for being good days to bake, and the completion of one of my school assignments felt like reason enough to take on a new pumpkin recipe that I had been eyeing for a few days.

Today was full of studying, apples, and good company, so some sweet and sugary vegan sugar cookies seemed like an appropriate way to capture the sweetness of the Sunday.


This recipe comes from a blog I am fond of, called Minimalist Baker, and these cookies are simple and fluffy and sweet, but not overbearingly so.


I hope that today is a sign of a good week ahead – because it was a heart-warming sort of day, and it would be nice to feel full of goodness at the end of the week as well!