Sunday, October 20, 2013

Pumpkin is trending

My mom and I have been joking about noticing pumpkin flavored everything this season and I think I “won” when I heard the Car Talk brothers joke about something like pumpkin spice brake fluid on NPR. I think I could mention pumpkin in every column for the rest of the year, so if you see me out, tell me what you have experienced.
Pumpkin crème brulee, in an adorable little canning jar, showed up in the dessert book discussed below:

Vegan Desserts
Unless you routinely have bacon with your pie, vegan desserts sounds on track. But remember, you won’t be cracking eggs or softening butter. Pie is a lifestyle, author Kris Holechek Peters shares in the book “Vegan Desserts in Jars.” Anyone can soften up to a little Mason jar of s’mores, raspberry brownie bombs and lemon blueberrys scone domes. I hear the raw pecan pie is very rich and Peters can make a “meringue”  of wonders.
Many recipes begin with a ganache from non-dairy versions of chocolate chips, coconut oil and milk. Elvis is in a jar, so you better let out this peanut butter and banana heavenly mix.

 A cup of donut
It’s true, knowing a great coffee is in the pantry can motivate you to hop out of bed. Dunkin Donuts ought to get some kind of science and humanity award for getting the flavors of jelly and chocolate glazed donut flavors into a coffee. I’m telling you, Dunkin Donuts new Bakery Series Coffee delivers a tantalizing aroma and the warm flavor of your favorite pastry without caloric guilt. It could be a new habit, though. Blueberry Muffin is one of my favorite flavors in the flour edition. It’s great as a coffee, but I might pick Caramel Coffee Cake as my favorite in a cup. Old Fashioned Donut is another option. Everyone I have served these to can’t seem to believe all that flavor can get into coffee beans.

Bring on the truffles
I’m pretty good at rationing out good things, so I don’t eat a box full at a time. My husband had already tried Organic Velvet “melty silky goodness” dark milk chocolate truffles and black truffles in dark chocolate before me. Before I’d had even one, he asked for more. What the heck, he’d just mowed the lawn. When I finally popped a ball and let the chocolate wall melt, exposing the promised melty stuff inside and all resistance was futile.
Before I finished that one bite, all I could think of was that husband over there was two truffles ahead of me in this one life we live. I laid down the law. Only one of each kind within a 24-hour period. It’s too good.

Alter Eco Foods has infused organic ingredients, adding pure lauric acid-rich coconut oil, instead of palm kernel oil, to fair trade chocolate. Packaging is compostable. When this box is empty, by the end of the day I write this, it can go in my garden compost. Guess what. These flavors are just the launch. More flavors are coming.

Coffee with your rum cake?
Tortuga Caribbean Rum Cakes offer a taste of the islands that often showed up at Port Arthur’s Cayman Fest activities. If you miss those festivals, order up a little coconut cake. Thank goodness for mail-order shopping and not messing with a good thing. News to me, because I’ve never been on a cruise, is that there are coffee beans, too. Tortuga selections have been lauded in “Porthole Cruise” magazine for nine consecutive years as Best Cruise Souvenir and in 2013 was named Greatest Caribbean Gift.
A burlap  sack encases a bag of 100 percent Jamaica Blue Mountain Coffee beans. Mornings are made better with a quick grind and a rich brew that will take you back to the islands if you’ve been there. In my case, the fantasy is a projection. I aim to enjoy this coffee on the beach some day. It’s plenty good right here in my Texas kitchen.

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