color

Pumpkin & Cinnamon Chip Cupcakes

flower cupcake
flower cupcake

Hey all, its Therese again with another fall themed recipe. I hope you enjoyed my last recipe, I know I did. Sticking with my orange gourd vegetable theme, I decided to make pumpkin cinnamon cupcakes with whipped cream cheese frosting! I cannot express to you, through this post alone, just how amazing these cupcakes are… you will just have to make it yourself!

I based my whipped cream cheese recipe off of Living Better Together’s whipped cream cheese. I like to make each recipe my own by tweaking the recipe a bit so I added cinnamon to the whipped cream cheese.

After never hearing of their existence, before walking around Walmart, I decided to add cinnamon chips to my cupcake recipe. The rest of the recipe is based off reading around twenty various pumpkin cupcake recipes on Pinterest that were all basically the same ingredients, but to give props to a specific recipe (which really helped in teaching me how to bake the cupcakes): Tracey’s Culinary Adventures brown butter pumpkin cupcakes.

Sticking to the fall theme, I wanted to make a dish that would be great for the season… the season of football. Everyone loves their wings, dips, and beer but what about dessert? Dessert is our ultimate goal anyways… These cupcakes are perfect for tailgating with their festive, football baking cups. I decided to bring these cupcakes to the Alabama-Tennessee game in Knoxville this weekend. However, I taste-tested one with one of my lucky roommates this afternoon and they are MELT IN YOUR MOUTH DELICIOUS- the perfect mixture of salty and sweet.

I also purchased some frilly pink baking cups (mostly so I could take SUPER CUTE pictures) to display how pretty these desserts are! I am saving these cupcakes for our girls’ night in tonight for "TGIT" and red wine.

Pumpkin & Cinnamon Chip Cupcakes with Whipped Cream Cheese Frosting

Makes 15 cupcakes

Ingredients

Pumpkin Cinnamon Cupcakes

  • ¾ cup unsalted butter
  • wine
  • 1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • ½ cup light brown sugar
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup cinnamon chips
  • 2 large eggs

Whipped Cream Cheese Icing

  • 4 ounces cream cheese
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream

Directions

For Cupcakes

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees, line cupcake pan with baking liners
  2. Melt butter in saucepan over medium heat. Once melted, pour into bowl and set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cinnamon chips.
  4. In a separate medium bowl, mix the pumpkin puree, brown sugar (be sure to pack down in measuring cup), granulated sugar, eggs, and add the butter. Once well mixed, add the dry ingredients to mix together.
  5. Divide the batter into the baking cups, inside cupcake pans, fill until about ½ or ¾ full.
  6. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes (be sure to rotate the pans about 10 minutes in)
  7. Cool the cupcakes before adding the frosting

For Frosting

  1. Let the cream cheese soften by either setting out while baking cupcakes or soften in microwave (but not me-- I recommend microwaving for 30 seconds)
  2. Mix the cream cheese, vanilla, and sugar in medium bowl and whisk at medium speed (if you own an electric mixer)
  3. Add heavy whipping cream and whisk until the frosting forms peaks
  4. If the frosting is not thick enough, let sit in fridge for a bit and whip again
football
football

Out with the Apples, and in with the Cherries!

I have experimented with another Cooking Light recipe and I have once again found a phenomenal recipe! In fact, this recipe might just be the all time favorite of my husband!  And I’m not complaining considering this recipe takes all of 15 minutes from start to finish!

This recipe offers a great alternative for the traditional pork and applesauce dish! Not to mention, a great way to ADD COLOR to your plate!!

Blog Pictures 002
Blog Pictures 002

I served the pork chops with baked sweet potato and arugula salad w/ feta, tomatoes, balsamic vinaigrette, and sunflower seeds, but the options are endless!

Blog Pictures 004
Blog Pictures 004

Give it a try and let me know what you think!!!

Pork Chops with Cherry Preserves SauceCooking Light, AUGUST 2006 Yield:  4 servings (serving size: 1 pork chop and about 1/4 cup sauce)

Cooking spray 4 (4-ounce) boneless loin pork chops 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided 1 cup cherry preserves 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar Chopped chives (optional)

Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Sprinkle pork with 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon black pepper. Add pork to pan; cook 4 minutes on each side or until browned. Remove pork from pan, and keep warm.

Add preserves, vinegar, remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, and remaining 1/8 teaspoon pepper to pan. Cook 30 seconds, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Serve with pork. Garnish with chopped chives, if desired.

National Nutrition Month - Pass The Blue & Purple Produce Please!

Blue/purple fruits and vegetables are colored by natural plant pigments called "anthocyanins" which is the same natural pigment mentioned for the red fruits and vegetables! The blue/purple produce family contain powerful antioxidants that help prevent many diseases and promote health!  Blueberries, grapes and raisins protect cells from damage, help reduce risk of cancer, stroke and heart disease, improve memory function, and promote healthy aging!

Did you know grapes contain flavonoids and phytonutrients?  The content of flavonoids and phytonutrients give the grapes color, therefore, the more vibrant the color, the more phytonutrients the grape contains.  Grapes also contain important antioxidants called polyphenols.

  • Polyphenols help prevent the accumulation of oxidized cholesterol 
  • Resveratrol protects against arterial wall damage.
  • Grapes contain high levels of Caffeic Acid, which is a cancer fighting substance!
  • Bioflavonoids facilitate the absorption of vitamin C! Vitamin C maintains healthy connective tissue in our bodies.

Other Members of the Blue/Purple Produce Family: Blackberries, Blueberries, Eggplant, Figs, Plums, Prunes, Purple grapes, Raisins

 

National Nutrition Month!!

March is National Nutrition Month which is sponsored by the ADA as a way to promote awareness to Americans to improve their nutrition and support those the professionals that work in the nutrition field.  This year’s theme is Eat By Color which is encouraging all Americans to expand the types of fruit and vegetables you ingest by simply increasing the number of "color" on your dinner plate!

To improve your health, think COLOR!  Fruits and vegetables come in terrific colors and flavors and they are a great source of vitamins, minerals and other natural substances that may help protect you from chronic diseases.  By eating different colored fruits and vegetables, you are offering your body a wide range of valuable nutrients such as potassium, vitamin A & C, and folate, to name a few!

Over the next month, I’ll be blogging about the nutritional value of fruits & vegetables as well as giving tips on how to increase your daily intake without a lot of extra trouble!

HOW MANY COLORS ARE ON YOUR DINNER PLATE?

Fighting Fatigue with Food - Miniseries Part 3

Be A “5 to 9” Fan

Eating 5-9 servings of fiber-rich fruits and vegetables will allow your energy levels to soar!  Fresh produce will help keep you hydrated because they are filled with water! The more color you can add to your day through a variety of fruit and vegetable colors, the better!  For example, bananas are easily digested and provide a lot of potassium which helps maintain normal nerve and muscle function.  Times of stress or during strenuous exercise can cause potassium levels to drop since the body does not store potassium for long periods of time.  Other great snacks include apples, grapes, peaches, and pineapples!