We are riding the Halloween Express this month. First stop: Party City for webs and tombstones. Once our house is decorated the holiday officially kicks off and we don’t get off the train until the big day, Oct. 31. In between, are parties, scare fairs, parades, pumpkin patches, costumes, all leading up to the main event- trick or treating!
Last weekend the train stopped at the pumpkin patch. An hour was spent evaluating each and every pumpkin; the boys were on a mission to find the perfect three. But out of the hundreds to choose from, amazingly only two were just right. So we made our exit after the wheel barrel races got a little out of control and before we were politely asked to leave.
Back at home we got to carving. I usually don’t like pulling out sharp knives around my children but Halloween is one holiday that calls for doing just that. Pumpkin carving worked the way most things do around here – about halfway through the project the boys wander off and Brian and I are left holding the bag. Or pumpkin in this case…
When we were done carving, the boys mysteriously reappeared and were ready to claim ownership of their work. To their credit, they did haul their pumpkins a few yards to display them among our other ghoulish décor.
That night I got three requests to bake a pumpkin pie. I decided to do a remake of a brownie instead. After the pumpkin risotto fiasco I was happy to go sweet this week instead of savory.
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/2-cup chocolate chips (optional)
1/2-cup dried cranberries (alternative option)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 8x8x2 baking pan with foil or parchment paper.
In a large mixing bowl whisk the eggs with the sugar and melting butter until combined. Add in pumpkin puree.
In a separate bowl sift the flour, cinnamon, salt and baking powder together. Mix the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until combined. Lastly, fold in the chocolate chips or dried cranberries. Or both!
Pour batter into baking pan and spread to corners.
Bake for approximately 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the brownies comes out clean.
Let cool in pan on a baking rack. Lift brownies out of pan in foil or parchment paper and slice into squares.
And the VERDICT is:
Matthew (age 6): “A teensy bit better than the chocolate ones”
Liam (age 4): “They look like Halloween brownies – these are yum yum yummy”
Dylan (age 4): “Much better than the chocolate kind!”
Thumbs up all around!