November is always, always, ALWAYS a beloved month for me. I can’t quite put my finger on it, but I just find the landscape to be beautiful. It’s constantly rainy and eerie. The remaining leaves are hanging around and the trees are constantly dark and wet. It’s great cozy weather. It’s definitely comfort food weather. THANKSGIVING, anyone?!?!
Thanksgiving is Keith’s favorite holiday. It’s mine as well (I even have a special turkey glass– not even kidding). Thanksgiving is supposed to be one of those holidays where you put in the extra effort to make a meal amazing. You gather. You imbibe. You indulge. Cooking = love. Love = cooking. It’s the one time of year we try to make food worthy of Instagram and Pinterest. You shouldn’t skip the real deal or try to simplify it. But, we get so caught up in the dramedies of life that many try and cut corners. Don’t do it!
Over the weekend we started closing up the homestead. In doing so, we accomplished a few other pending to do list projects as well. All of which, you guessed it, are food related!!! Pumpkin pie puree and chicken bone broth/stock! This post is strictly about the pumpkin!
We purchased a few pie pumpkins for a decorative Halloween display on our front porch. Our 14 month old daughter was slightly obsessed with pumpkins this year. Maybe because they are orange, or maybe because it was something she could hug. When you see an adorable child hug a pumpkin, or anything, chances are, you buy it. So, we ended up purchasing three pie pumpkins. One of them dry rotted– from the inside out, but the other two (ones that were kept out of the direct sun) were on their last leg, starting to slowly wilt. If you read my Basic Witch post, you’ll know there is nothing better than pumpkin pie made with real pumpkin.
Making pumpkin pie from real pumpkins has been my long-standing Thanksgiving tradition. It takes minimal effort on your part (the oven does the rest) and yields the most scrumptiously delicious result. This year, I upped my game.
If you’ve been following, you know that I have a slight essential oil collection/obsession. I want Santa to bring me a copper still for Christmas, but that’s beside the point. We have been collecting mostly edible essential oils and a few “oils” made from CO2 extraction, like vanilla, specifically for the purpose I am about to share; infusion. Say what?!?!
I took ginger, cinnamon, clove, and vanilla essential oil, mixed it with some liquid coconut oil (MCT oil) and brushed it on the pumpkin halves on the inside. I then laid them face down on a pan and roasted them to their pumpkin-y finest for about an hour at 350 °F. The smell is heaven! I then scraped the pumpkin from the skin, pureed them, and put them in mason jars. I can’t decide if I am going to freeze (did you know you can freeze mason jars?) or can them until Turkey Day. It’s going to be the best pie (at least most aromatic pie) I have ever made! And I can’t wait to stare at my Indiana family as they stuff their faces with it!
Indiana? After some unnecessary family drama, we started going to my sister’s sister (stick with me) for Thanksgiving. She was the saving grace to what was to be a disappointing holiday that year. And, although she’s my biological half-sister’s half-sister (confusing, I know), she and I are non-blood sisters and life long friends. She’s the yin to my yang, Godmother to my daughter, and the Statler to my Waldorf… or vice-versa. We have great conversations about nothing and sometimes about actual things… we think. The decision to have Thanksgiving here two years ago, although initially bleak and unwarranted, has blossomed into an amazing tradition and experience. And that’s the way Thanksgiving should be. No snide comments, no dramatic glares, no pushing people out because you find them “different” from you. I digress…
Here’s to pie!