Foodie Friday ~ Pumpkin Ginger Cupcakes

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2 cups all-purpose flour

1 (3.4 ounce) package instant butterscotch pudding mix

2 teaspoons baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

1/2 teaspoon ground allspice

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

1/3 cup finely chopped crystallized ginger

1 cup butter, room temperature

1 cup white sugar

1 cup packed brown sugar

4 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree

Directions

Preheat an oven to 350 degrees. Grease 24 muffin cups, or line with paper muffin liners. Whisk together the flour, pudding mix, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ground ginger, allspice, cloves, and crystallized ginger in a bowl; set aside.

Beat the butter, white sugar, and brown sugar with an electric mixer in a large bowl until light and fluffy. The mixture should be noticeably lighter in color. Add the room-temperature eggs one at a time, allowing each egg to blend into the butter mixture before adding the next. Beat in the vanilla and pumpkin puree with the last egg. Stir in the flour mixture, mixing until just incorporated. Pour the batter into the prepared muffin cups.

Bake in the preheated oven until golden and the tops spring back when lightly pressed, about 20 minutes. Cool in the pans for 10 minutes before removing to cool completely on a wire rack.

Foodie Friday ~ Iced Pumpkin Cookies

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2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup butter, softened

1 1/2 cups white sugar

1 cup canned pumpkin puree

1 egg

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 cups confectioners’ sugar

3 tablespoons milk

1 tablespoon melted butter

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, ground cloves, and salt; set aside.

In a medium bowl, cream together the 1/2 cup of butter and white sugar. Add pumpkin, egg, and 1 teaspoon vanilla to butter mixture, and beat until creamy. Mix in dry ingredients. Drop on cookie sheet by tablespoonfuls; flatten slightly.

Bake for 15 to 20 minutes in the preheated oven. Cool cookies, then drizzle glaze with fork.

To Make Glaze: Combine confectioners’ sugar, milk, 1 tablespoon melted butter, and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Add milk as needed, to achieve drizzling consistency.

Thursday Crafts For Kids ~ Leaf Sun Print Mural

This is a fun fall craft for your kiddos! Perfect for ages 4 and up.

What You’ll Need:

1 sheet construction of each color: red, green, and orange

Tape

Leaves in different shapes and sizes

Pennies, stones or pebbles

How to make it:

Tape the three sheets of construction paper together. Only use tape on one side.

Place paper so it gets some direct sunlight, good side up, and place leaves on top. Position some leaves so that they cover two colors of paper. Also try leaving some hanging off the edge. Place pennies, stones or other weights onto leaves so that they will not blow away.

Leave the project in the sunlight for 3-4 hours. Check after an hour or so to see if any of the leaves have begun to curl, adjust the weights if necessary.

Remove the weights and leaves.

Tips:If the sunlight isn’t strong enough to bleach the paper in only 3-4 hours, leave the leaves on for longer.

To dress your project up a bit, tie twine into a bow and glue to the center of the paper, or glue one to each color.

You will need flat leaves, so use fallen leaves that have been pressed in a heavy book, or pluck one or two from a tree.

Try different shapes and sizes to add visual interest. Have fun while you’re doing it!

Craft idea from Kaboose.com