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Old Fashioned Pumpkin Pie

 

This is a classic stewed pumpkin pie, with a lovely spiciness from the cloves, and aromatic with brandy. There were, in early America, versions of pumpkin pie made with sliced raw pumpkin, just as we make apple pies today.
 
Pumpkins, as prolific as their cousin zucchini, proved to be very useful to the English and other settlers in America. They can be dried or stored whole in cool, dry places in the house until they were wanted. They were used as a side dish for meat, and by the nineteenth century, pumpkin was one of the most common pie fillings.
 
The secret to making a good pumpkin pie from fresh pumpkin is to drain the pulp well after cooking. Mash it, then let it sit in a sieve for 10 minutes to allow most of the water to drip away before mixing it with the rest of the ingredients.
 
Preheat the oven to 350°F.
 
2 cups homemade stewed pumpkin (or 1 15-ounce can plain pumpkin puree)
1 cup milk or half-and-half
1 tablespoon butter
½ cup light brown sugar
2 eggs, beaten
¼ cup brandy
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground or freshly grated nutmeg
¼ - ½ teaspoon ground cloves (clove lovers will want to use the larger amount)
¼ teaspoon salt
 
1 unbaked 9-inch pie crust
 
Put the milk or half-and-half in a saucepan with the butter and the sugar, and warm them together until the butter melts. Add the warmed milk to the pumpkin in a large bowl. Add the beaten eggs, brandy, spices, and salt and mix until it becomes a smooth batter.
 
Line a 9-inch pie plate with your crust, crimping the edges, then pour in the pumpkin mixture. Bake for 1 hour or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.

Old Fashioned Gingerbread

 

8 TBSP softened butter ½ tsp salt ½ cup light brown sugar 1 TBSP ground ginger ½ cup molasses 1 tsp ground cinnamon 1 egg ½ tsp ground allspice 2 ½ cups all purpose flour 1 tsp ground nutmeg 1 tsp baking powder Procedure:
 
Cream butter and sugar together, then beat in molasses and egg. Add all dry ingredients and spices together and mix until well blended. Add dry ingredient to creamed butter/sugar mixture and mix until well blended. Cover and refrigerate for one hour. Roll out dough on a lightly floured surface about three-quarters of an inch thick. Using a cookie cutter cut out cookie figures or into three inch squares( if you’re not artistic) and place in a pre-heated 350F oven for 7-8 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack. Personally, I like mine plain, but you can frost the cookies if you wish (2 cups powdered sugar, 1/3 cup butter, 1 tsp. vanilla and 2 TBSP milk or cream) or just sprinkle with regular sugar while they’re cooling.

Chocolate Depression Cake

 

A budget conscious recipe with cocoa, vanilla, oil, vinegar, and other ingredients. Ingredients:
 
3 cups flour
2 cups sugar
pinch salt
2 teaspoons baking soda
10 level tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
2 teaspoons vanilla
3/4 cup salad oil
2 tablespoons vinegar
2 cups cold water
Preparation:
 
Sift dry ingredients into a large mixing bowl. 
Add remaining ingredients and mix with a large spoon until smooth. 
Spoon into a greased and floured 13x9x2-inch baking pan. 
Bake at 350° for 30 minutes. 
Frost with your favorite frosting.

Spaghetti Pizza

 

Serves 10 A popular request by kids, and a favorite from Dreamfields Pasta.
 
Ingredients:
8 ounces Dreamfields Spaghetti
8 ounces lean ground beef
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 eggs
1/2 cup skim milk
4 cups shredded skim mozzarella cheese, divided
1 jar (26-ounces) pasta sauce
1 can (6 ounces) sliced black olives
1 can (4 ounces) sliced mushrooms
 
Directions:
Prepare spaghetti according to package directions. Preheat oven to 350-degrees F.
In a medium skillet over medium heat, brown hamburger. Add onion, salt and pepper and cook until onion is soft. Drain off excess juices.
In a medium bowl, beat eggs. Add milk and one cup of mozzarella cheese and mix. Toss mixture with cooked pasta.
Grease a 9x13x2 inch pan with non-stick cooking spray or butter. Spread pasta mixture to in the baking dish.
Layer ground beef, pasta sauce, remaining 3 cups of mozzarella cheese, black olives and mushrooms. Cover and Bake at 350-degrees F for 20 minutes. Remove cover and bake 10 minutes more. Remove from oven and let stand for 5 minutes before serving.
Nutrition information per serving (1/10 of recipe): 348 calories; 25 g protein; 12 g digestible carbohydrates; 16 g fat.

Italian Meatball Subs

 

Finally, a meatball sub you can sink your teeth into without wrecking your diet! This scrumptious Italian classic uses lean ground beef to cut the fat content, and a plethora of herbs adds loads of flavor into each meatball. Ingredients:
 
Nonstick cooking spray
½ cup chopped onion
3 teaspoons finely chopped garlic, divided
1 can (14-1/2 ounces) Italian-style crushed tomatoes, undrained
2 bay leaves
2 ½ teaspoons dried basil, divided
2 teaspoons dried oregano leaves, divided
¾ teaspoon black pepper, divided
¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
½ pound 95% lean ground beef
1/3 cup chopped green onions
1/3 cup plain dry bread crumbs
¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
1 egg white
2 tablespoons water
½ teaspoon dried marjoram leaves
½ teaspoon ground mustard
4 French bread rolls, warmed and cut in half lengthwise
Directions:
 
1. Spray large nonstick saucepan with cooking spray. Heat over medium heat until hot. Add onion and 2 teaspoons garlic. Cook and stir 5 minutes or until onion is tender. Add tomatoes with juice, bay leaves, 2 teaspoons basil, 1 teaspoon oregano, 1/2 teaspoon black pepper and red pepper flakes; cover. Simmer 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove and discard bay leaves.
 
2. Combine beef, green onions, bread crumbs, parsley, egg white, water, remaining 1 teaspoon garlic, 1/2 teaspoon basil, 1 teaspoon oregano, 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, marjoram and mustard in medium bowl until well blended. Shape into 16 small meatballs.
 
3. Spray large nonstick skillet with cooking spray. Heat over medium heat until hot. Add meatballs. Cook 5 minutes or until meatballs are no longer pink in centers, turning occasionally.
 
4. Add meatballs to tomato sauce. Cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
 
5. Place 4 meatballs in each roll. Spoon additional sauce over meatballs. Serve immediately. Makes 4 servings.
 
Nutrition per Serving:
 
(Serving size = 1 sub with 4 meatballs)
 
Calories = 282
Total fat = 9 g
Saturated fat = 3 g
Carbohydrate = 32 g
Protein = 18 g
Fiber = 1 g
Cholesterol = 35 mg
Sodium = 497 mg
Dietary Exchanges:
 
Meat = 2
Starch = 2
Vegetable = 1

Low-Fat Macaroni and Cheese

 

Who doesn't love mac and cheese? This traditional comfort food isn't just for kids. This grown-up gourmet version with cheddar and ricotta cheese is melt-in-your-mouth creamy and smooth. Ingredients:
 
8 ounces uncooked macaroni
1 cup fat-free reduced-sodium chicken broth
1 shallot, finely minced
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour mixed with 2 tablespoons water
½ teaspoon dry mustard
1/8 teaspoon white pepper
1-3/4 cups (7 ounces) shredded reduced-fat mild Cheddar cheese, divided
1 cup fat-free ricotta cheese
1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley (optional)
Directions:
 
1. Cook macaroni according to package directions, omitting salt. Drain; set aside.
 
2. Combine chicken broth and shallot in medium saucepan; bring to a boil over high heat. Cover; reduce heat to low and simmer 5 minutes. Stir in flour mixture. Cook and stir 3 to 5 minutes or until slightly thickened. Add mustard, pepper, 1 cup Cheddar cheese and ricotta cheese. Continue stirring until cheeses are completely melted. Stir in cooked pasta; mix well.
 
3. Remove pasta mixture from heat; stir in remaining 3/4 cup Cheddar cheese and parsley, if desired. Serve immediately. Garnish with fresh parsley sprigs, if desired. Makes 4 servings.
 
Nutrition per Serving:
 
(Serving size = 1 1/8 cups)
 
Calories = 398
Total fat = 8 g
Saturated fat = 4 g
Carbohydrate = 54 g
Protein = 28 g
Cholesterol = 33 mg
Sodium = 788 mg
Dietary Exchanges:
 
Starch = 3 ½
Meat = 2 ½

Pumpkin Bars

 

2 omega-3 eggs (or 1 whole egg + 1/3 cup egg whites, or can use all egg whites)
1 1/2 cup lowfat cottage cheese
2 tablespoons molasses
1 tablespoon vanilla
3 scoops Whey Protein Vanilla Powder
1/3 cup Milled Flaxseed
2-3 tablespoons Organic Ground Cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon (approximately) of each:
Organic Ground Nutmeg
Organic Ground Ginger
Clove
All spice
Pumpkin pie spice
1/2 teaspoon Himalayan Crystal Salt
1 teaspoon NuNaturals More Fiber Baking Blend
2 (15 oz.) cans pumpkin puree (unsweetened)
1 cup Organic Walnuts, toasted
Organic Ground Cinnamon, sprinkle to taste
 
 
Directions:
 
1. Spray 9 x 9 baking pan with canola oil.
 
2. Using a 14 cup food processor, blend eggs until creamy.
 
3. Add cottage cheese, molasses and vanilla to eggs. Blend until thick and creamy (approximately 1 minute).
 
4. Add one can of pumpkin at a time to the mixture, blending in between.
 
5. Add remaining ingredients, except nuts, and blend until mixed.
 
6. Mix in nuts until blended.
 
7. Taste the batter to check sweetness. Add some stevia or more spices according to your liking.
 
8. Pour into the sprayed pan and sprinkle cinnamon on the top before baking.
 
9. Bake at 325° for 1 hour and 45 minutes. Rotate the pan at 50 minutes to ensure even browning.
 
10. When the bars are cool, cover with plastic wrap or foil. Cracks will appear on the top and will flatten when the bars cool. Note: Bars must sit overnight for the flavors to meld. They will not taste good right out of the oven.

Christmas Plum Pudding

 

1 1/2 cup soft Breadcrumbs
1 cup seedless Raisins
1 cup Currants
1 cup chopped Dates
1 cup chopped Cherries (red & green)
1 cup roughly chopped pitted Prunes
1 cup cooked Apple chunks
1/4 cup of Lemon Peel (or some lemon juice)
1/2 cup chopped dried Apricots, Apples etc
1/2 cup chopped Walnuts
1/2 cup butter
1 cup Flour
1 teaspoon Baking Powder
1/4 teaspoon Bicarb of Soda
1/4 teaspoon Salt
1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon Nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon Cloves
1/2 teaspoon Allspice
1/4 teaspoon Mace
1/2 cup ground Suet
1/2 cup brown Sugar
2 Eggs
1/2 cup Molasses
1 cup Brandy
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup Marmalade
Directions:
 
Mix fruit, nuts and breadcrumbs and set aside. Stir together flour, baking powder, bicarb, suet, salt and spices. Cream butter and sugar well and add beaten eggs slowly beating well constantly. Blend in molasses. Mix milk and brandy together and add to the creamed mixture alternately with the flour mix beating well as you add. Finally fold in the fruit mix well and the marmalade. Add a little gravy browning mixing well to make it a dark colour if necessary. Grease a pudding basin and fill 2/3 full with the pudding mixture. Cover with a layer of greaseproof paper then aluminum foil and tie well (Strong elastics work well but put three on in case of breakage !) 
 
I use the trivet from the pressure cooker in the bottom of a deep pot. Fill with a couple of inches of water and put the basin in and the lid on. Steam for 6 hours....it's important of course not to get any water into the basin so bring to the boil slowly and keep the water level low enough not to boil up. After 6 hours take out and uncover straight away to let the surface dry well (Leave it overnight loosely covered if necessary - it must NOT have a wet surface) When cold wet the surface with about 1/4 cup of brandy (this adds flavour but also sterilizes the surface so it does not mold while seasoning) Cover with a layer of greaseproof and a layer of foil again trying tightly and put it in the cold room for about 3+ weeks to season and blend the fruit flavours. When preparing - steam again 4 hours very gently without changing the cover.
 
This recipe serves/makes 8

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