French Broad Chocolate Lounge & Homegrown {Asheville, NC}

The weekend seemed to go by too quickly. I wished I’d had a whole week to spend there like we did last time.

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Nevertheless, Sunday night was for revisiting some faves from our last trip – French Broad Chocolate Lounge and Homegrown.

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But first, I enjoyed a massage at Spa Theology – a recommendation from our B&B. I first checked into the Grove Park Inn, but it was over $200 for an 80 minute massage, and they didn’t have anything shorter. The price just seemed so high. Has anyone been? Is it worth it? I was really intimidated by most of the prices at the Grove Park Inn. $90 for a non-resort guest to visit the spa area pools? Maybe it’s worth it, and I just don’t know since I haven’t been.

Either way, I had a great massage at Spa Theology. Their setup is really nice (and really close to French Broad Chocolates). I felt really comfortable and relaxed at their facility. I liked how they offered massage upgrades (scalp treatment, foot scrub, hot stones). I opted for the foot scrub, though I’m not sure that particular one was worth it. It didn’t add any additional time to the massage, just the treatment. Anywho, the lounge area was small but cozy. Oh, and did you see the photo above? A post-massage chocolate waited for me in my locker. Pretty sweet, right? I also really liked the goodies for sale in the shop area of Spa Theology. I took home a candle and linen spray to enjoy later.

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Since it was nearby, I walked on over to French Broad after my massage. Last time we were here, we waited in a line out the door. This time, there was almost no line. Score!

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I had a tough choice selecting from all the delicious options, though they were narrowed down since I was getting everything to go. I got a couple things for dinner and then a brownie and pecan tart to take home the next day.

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Hubby picked me up from downtown, and we headed to Homegrown for dinner.

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We started with pimento cheese with pita wedges and fresh veggies.

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Hubby had some tomato soup as a starter.

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For my entrée, I had the fried chicken I loved so much last time with mushroom gravy. I got the sesame kale and mashed potatoes for my side. It was comfort food goodness. I still can’t believe you can get such good food for such a low price!

In case you didn’t see my last post on Homegrown, the decorations are sparse, but what they lack there they make up with delicious food and amazing prices. I wouldn’t go here for a romantic dinner, but I definitely recommend stopping by some time if you’re ever in Asheville.

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We headed back to the B&B to enjoy our French Broad take-out with a glass of vino (picked up from the local Green Life/Whole Foods)

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We had super tasty macaron…

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…and a slice of the quintessential chocolate cake. Yum! Both were just as delicious as I expected them to be based on our last trip. I almost got the olive oil chocolate cake this time, but I guess I’ll have to safe that for trying next time!

Thanks for reading!

Christmas Eve Filipino Feast 2012

Merry Christmas from my parents’ house!

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Bailey’s been getting plenty of attention from my family, which he loves.

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My mom and sister decided to whip up a huge, Filipino feast for our Christmas Eve dinner this year.

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Mom made a dish she said we haven’t had in almost twenty years – morcon. Morcon is a dish made with flank steak that is rolled up with ham, kielbasa, hard-boiled eggs, and olives and then cooked in a tomato-based sauce. It sounds and looks kind of weird, but it tastes great!

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Here’s the spread.

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And here’s the finished morcon. We’re definitely not waiting another twenty years to make this one again. It was a winner.

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Sis is a dim sum fan, too, and she made a Filipino-Chinese fusion with steamed buns filled with pork adobo.

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These were so good that I had two more for an after-dinner snack! (dinner was really early)

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Lumpia is always welcome at a Filipino feast.

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They made this version with chicken and a wide mixture of vegetables, including cabbage, carrots, and zucchini. Yum!

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Here’s my plate – don’t forget about the pancit.

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{chowing down}

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Flan – a dessert we often had at holiday meals growing up. We haven’t had this one in awhile, either.

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{my piece – I’d forgotten how good this was}

Everything on the table was a winner tonight. I can’t imagine a better Christmas Eve dinner for our family.

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After eats, we moved on to open some presents for our guests – hubby and Matt.

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Bailey helped open presents.

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And after some gift-opening fun, mom, Sis, and I got started on a new food project – suman. We’ve never made suman before. Well, mom said she used to make it growing up. Suman is a Filipino dessert made with sweet rice, coconut milk, and salt.

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It was quite the process, but we did it. We ended up with twenty finished suman.

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The finished suman is then topped with sugar or served with sugar on the side. This stuff is good, and it really takes on the flavor from the bamboo leaf it’s cooked in, but I still prefer my Sweet Rice (the one made with brown sugar). Either way, it was a fun project to do with my family.

***

I’m seriously geeking out on my Christmas vacation. I majored in Computer Science in college, but I’ve never really worked as a developer. But, I’ve been feeling the itch to code lately, so I’m trying to teach myself Python. I’d also like to take a look at some HTML5 tutorials since I’m only self-taught on HTML from several years ago. Who knows? I’m having fun, so I guess it’s all good. What have you been up to?

***

Reader question: If you celebrated, what did you eat for Christmas Eve dinner? Do you have any traditional Christmas Eve eats?

Cinnamon Maple Peanut Butter Cookies {Recipe}

New Holiday Cookie Recipe

Here’s another idea for a great cookie to make this holiday season – melt-in-your-mouth Cinnamon Maple Peanut Butter Cookies.

When I saw some organic peanut butter on sale for $1.99 a jar, I knew I had to get some. Specifically, I had to purchase some so I could experiment with a recipe I’ve always wanted to play with – the classic peanut butter cookie. In researching the recipe, I discovered there are two main types of peanut butter cookie – with and without flour. While the idea of a flourless peanut butter cookie sounded interesting, I decided to work up a batch that had flour. But, I wanted to change it up a bit. I used maple syrup for the sweetener and added a touch of cinnamon.

The maple syrup gave these cookies a really interesting and smooth texture. In fact, I first thought these cookies would be a fail. I noticed when I was rolling the dough balls in a bowl of cinnamon sugar that the dough was wetter than I thought it would be. It wasn’t difficult to work with, just not as firm as I expected. And the baked up cookie crumbled a little easier than I would have liked. The worst part – I’d made an experiment recipe to take to a pot luck hot dog party with some of my friends. Oh no…would they hate them?

I went ahead and brought the cookies to my friend’s house and hoped for the best. I didn’t ask any of them what they thought of the cookie because I felt like that would fishing for compliments and they’d say they were good even if they thought they were terrible. Still, several of my friends told me the cookies were really good. I didn’t believe them. Surely, they were being polite. Then, one of them told me how much she liked the flavor twist. She wasn’t sure what it was but when I confirmed it was maple syrup and cinnamon, she got really excited and said she loved maple syrup. Things were looking promising. But, I was still unconvinced that the cookies were worthy of being shared here on the blog.

It wasn’t until we were headed back to the kitchen to get our tupperware to take home that I believed this recipe could go up here on The Chic Life. As we entered the kitchen, there was a man standing there I’d never seen before, and he was gobbling up the cookies and saying they were delicious and that it was like they “melted in your mouth.” Yesssssss! For a stranger to say he liked the cookies without knowing I made them, that had to mean they were good. I told him we brought them and offered for him to take some before we left. He quickly grabbed another two. I offered more to my friends who had hosted they party, and they took some more, too. And with that, it was decided – I would share the recipe with you guys!

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Oh, and that whole crumbly-texture thing…definitely more of a melt-in-your-mouth quality. That’s what I’m going with, at least.

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Cinnamon Maple Peanut Butter Cookies

I switched up the flavors of the class peanut butter cookie by using maple syrup as the sweetener and adding cinnamon for a little extra kick. Rolling the dough balls in a cinnamon sugar mixture helps drive the cinnamon flavor home. The resulting flavor is familiar but new. The texture isn’t chewy, but more of a melt-in-your-mouth bite.

Prep time:
Bake time:
Total time:

*Vegetarian*

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, plus 1/2 teaspoon
  • 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup crunchy peanut butter
  • 3/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar (preferably raw)

Directions:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Mix sugar and cinnamon together in a small bowl and set aside.
  3. Whisk dry together
  4. Mix butter and peanut butter till creamy (I used a handheld mixer). Add maple syrup, egg, and vanilla and mix till just combined.
  5. Mix wet into dry till just combined (careful to not overmix).
  6. Use small sorbet scoop (or two spoons) to form small balls (about 1″ in diameter). Dough will be very soft, but gently roll each ball in cinnamon sugar mixture and return to baking sheet. Use a fork to press criss-crosses into the top of each cookie, pressing gently. Cookies should be about 1/4-1/3″ tall/thick.
  7. Bake 8-12 minutes depending on oven temperature variation (if using 2 racks in oven, rotate baking sheets halfway through baking process) Note: Mine were done at 10 minutes

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More Ideas

Here are more holiday cookie ideas:

And be sure to check out this holiday cookie round up by Snappy Gourmet (click).

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Your Feedback

And I LOVE your comments! Thank you so much for your feedback – whether you stop by here and leave a comment, post on my Facebook wall, tweet me, or email me. I love hearing from you!

Here’s a sweet comment from Facebook about these cookies – Thank you so much, Nicole!:

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And here’s a comment on Pinterest about this hot chocolate recipe – Thank you, Sherene!:

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Christmas Vacation

I got some last minute shopping done yesterday morning. I woke up super early to beat the mall traffic and take advantage of the extended hours. The strategy totally worked as the mall was almost empty. Yes! I have all my gifts lined up…now, I just have to wrap all of them. One of these years I’ll get this done earlier.

We’re getting ready to head out to visit my family for Christmas. I have the next week off from work, and I’m SO excited! I’ve been hoarding these days all year, and I’m so ready for a vacation! I’m hoping for a good mix of downtime with our families with some time to get stuff done at our house.

Reader question: Christmas gift shopping – what’s your style – early or late?

Also, what are your plans for the holiday season?

Cranberry White Chocolate Cheesecake (Using Leftover Cranberry Sauce) {Recipe}

I think you’re going to want to bookmark this recipe for later…

Cranberry White Chocolate Cheesecake made with cranberry sauce! Not only do I think this flavor combo is fun, but I’ve compiled tips on baking a crack-free cheesecake in the recipe at the end of this post. Just for you!

This is a little something I came up with when I was brainstorming ideas for Thanksgiving leftovers. But cranberry sauce is so prevalent around the holidays, in general, I think it will work for many occasions. In fact, you don’t even need to wait for leftovers. If I were you, I’d just make extra cranberry sauce so you can set some aside for this recipe.

I brainstormed this concept before I really thought about what I was getting myself into. I haven’t made many cheesecakes before, so I was a little intimidated since they seem to be a bit finicky. I do like a good challenge, though, and I believed I could do it if I put my mind to it. It also helped that I’m an analytical person, so I researched the heck out of this and very carefully approached the whole thing. By using some great online resources and paying careful attention to detail, I was able to create something that was not only edible, but a big hit with hubby (and me). In fact, the two of us ate this whole thing! It took a few days, but we did it. And no, it was not a struggle.

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For years, my family used to eat cranberry sauce from the can, but since my sister learned how easy it is to make from scratch, she always whips up a batch for our family.

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I love how the layer of cranberry sauce gives a tart bite to this dessert.

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{Using a tart dish for my water bath – had to push the cheesecake to the side to get the water in there}

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Here’s the baked cheesecake. I couldn’t believe how smooth the top was. My camera couldn’t even focus on the cheesecake top! I was so afraid I would mess this up, but the tips I found online worked!

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I also thought I’d mess up the white chocolate topping (shown above just before I started whisking together)…

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…but it just needed time and elbow grease – it smoothed right out.

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Cranberry White Chocolate Cheesecake (Using Leftover Cranberry Sauce) {Recipe}

Make extra cranberry sauce for your next holiday meal so you can make this festive cheesecake for dessert. Layers of tart cranberry sauce, creamy cheesecake, and sweet white chocolate make for a delicious dessert that’s perfect for before, during, or after the holidays. I adapted my friend Sarah’s family friend’s famous basic cheesecake recipe and added in some general cheesecake baking (and chocolate) tips from a few fabulous online resources: Simply Recipes, Joy of Baking, Bon Appétit, Yahoo Answers, and Pastry Chef Online (see reference for details).

The recipe is pretty simple, but it looks long because I added a lot of notes to help you along. See photos above for visual tips. See references below for additional info on the recipe and more tips on making great cheesecake.

*Vegetarian*

Prep time: 10 minutes active time to prepare cheesecake filling (remember you’ll need time before hand to get ingredients to room temperature), 10 minutes active time to prepare white chocolate topping
Bake time: 20-30 minutes actual bake time (remember to allow 1 hour for cool time between start and end of prep time, plus additional time to chill in the refrigerator)
Total time: active time for you will be about 2 hours from when you start preparing to when you’re ready to put the finished cheesecake in the refrigerator to cool; allow about 1 whole day or 2 hours plus overnight for preparation and chill time for the whole thing
Yields: 1 9-inch cheesecake

Ingredients:

  • 1 prepared 9 inch pie crust
  • 1/3-1/2 cup leftover cranberry sauce (If you have more leftover cranberry sauce than 1/2 cup, I think up to 1 cup would work in this recipe – you’ll just have a thicker layer of it on the bottom)
  • 1 8-ounce package cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar (preferably raw)
  • 1 tablespoon all purpose flour (preferable unbleached)
  • 1 egg, room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons (room temperature) plus 1/2 cup heavy cream (milk may work)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • hot water, for creating the water bath – amount will depend on size of dish you’re filling (I heated a teapot full of water for mine)
  • 1 cup white chocolate pieces/chips

Directions:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F. Note: I started heating water in a teapot at this point, too, for the water bath.
  2. Stir cranberry sauce a bit so it’s more pliable. Gently spread in the bottom of your pie crust. Note: I let my cranberry sauce sit at room temperature for about 20 minutes prior to putting my dessert together so it would be easier to spread. You could probably also microwave it very briefly (5-10 seconds).
  3. Being careful to not over-mix, mix cream cheese, sugar, and flour until just combined. Mix in egg. Mix in 2 tablespoons of heavy cream and vanilla extract until just smooth.
  4. Pour cream cheese mixture into prepared pie crust and spread evenly with a spatula. Take note of how the top of the cheesecake looks shiny (this will help you know how to tell when it’s done later).
  5. Place the pie dish into a larger dish (I used a tart dish, but just something large enough to fit the pie dish with some room on the sides will work) and carefully fill it with hot water till the liquid comes about 3/4 up the sides of the pie dish. VERY carefully put both dishes into your oven in the center of the oven (horizontally and vertically center). Note: You can either do the water bath before or after putting the dishes into the oven. Some people like to pull the oven rack out just a wee bit (but not so much that it would fall if you placed a dish on it), place the empty large dish (and pie dish) on it, and fill the water bath there. Once the water bath has been created, carefully push the rack and the dish back till the dish is centered.
  6. Bake for 20-30 minutes or until the whole top of the cheesecake is done and the top looks dull. Note: You can also gently tap the center of the cheesecake, and if it feels firm, it should be done. Additionally, you can shake your pan a little, and it should jiggle only slightly (mine didn’t budge at all – I think because the layer of cheesecake on this recipe is thinner than other cheesecake recipes).
  7. Leave cheesecake in the oven, crack the door, and let it cool like this for 1 hour.
  8. Put white chocolate into a bowl. Heat 1/2 cup heavy cream just to a boil and then pour over white chocolate. Let sit for 5 minutes and then whisk until smooth. Pour white chocolate mixture over cheesecake in an even layer and let cool to room temperature (about 15-30 minutes).
  9. Place finished cheesecake into refrigerator to chill for at least 2 hours or overnight. Serve and enjoy!

References:

  • Cracking in the top of the cheesecake is a common problem, but I really wanted to make the top of mine smooth since I was putting the white chocolate layer on top, and I wanted it to look pretty. I learned from Joy of Baking that over-mixing and baking too long are two common problems that cause cracking. I learned from Simply Recipes that baking the cheesecake in a water bath and gently cooling the cheesecake in the oven with the door cracked will help reduce the risk of cracking. I used all of these tips when I made my cheesecake, and it came out smooth as silk. So, I included these tips in the recipe above.
  • Since over-baking was cause of cracking in the cheesecake, I wanted to make sure I took the cheesecake out as soon as it was done. I found two helpful posts online that gave tips on when to tell the cheesecake was done. You can click here to view one article by Bon Appétit and click here to view some feedback from Yahoo Answers. I found the shiny vs dull test to be most effective for me.
  • I wanted the top layer of white chocolate to be a little soft, so rather than just melting white chocolate, I researched other ideas. I found this post by Pastry Chef Online very helpful for using chocolate, in general.

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You may also like…

These other festive TCL recipes:

Or these recipes from around the web:

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I had so much fun with this cheesecake recipe that I’m hoping to come up with some more cheesecake ideas!

Happy baking and happy holidays!

***

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Thanks for reading!

Healthier Baked Pumpkin Doughnuts {Recipe}

Is Christmas hitting your town, too? Every day, I see a new neighbor with an assortment of lights up in their yard or a wrapped Christmas tree tied to the top of a car on the way home to be decorated. We haven’t put up any decorations or even gotten a tree yet. We actually don’t have a lot in the way of Christmas decorations anyways. I always marvel at the decorations I see other people do, especially the creative outdoor lighting. I’ve always wanted to do the type of outdoor Christmas lights where they outline the house. White bulbs would work, but blue would be pretty, too. For some reason, I think that looks really nice. I also really enjoy when people put wreaths over every window with giant red bows. It’s so simple, but looks great. Oh, and I guess they’re kind of cheesy, but the reindeer-lights (white lights that are in the shape of a reindeer) look nice to me for some reason, too.

Do you put up Christmas lights on the outside of your house? How do you do yours?

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I seem to be stuck in post-Thanksgiving mode. We still have frozen turkey leftovers to eat, and I have a few more Thanksgiving leftover recipes to share here on TCL (a use for that turkey and a dessert for cranberry sauce). But, for now, I thought I’d share another good use for canned pumpkin in case anyone has some leftover from last week’s festivities. Or, if you have more cans of pumpkin in your pantry than you know what to do with. Or, if you’re just looking for an excuse to make a delicious dessert.

I call them “Healthier Baked Pumpkin Doughnuts” because I have a hard time calling most dishes, especially desserts, “healthy.” What makes a dessert “healthy” anyways? I’m not sure, but I do know these are healthier than traditional fried doughnuts.

I considered making an icing/frosting to go on these (I was thinking cream cheese), but I actually really liked baked doughnuts just rolled in cinnamon sugar. I do have another doughnut recipe queued up that has an icing, but there’s something about the sugar mixture that makes me happy. I suppose it’s because part of the appeal of the baked doughnuts is how fast and easy they are. And making frosting just adds more time and dirties more dishes. The cinnamon sugar appeals to my lazy side since it’s faster and easier than making icing and still tastes excellent.

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I actually meant to post this recipe sooner, but the first batch came out like this (see photo above). Oopsie. Since getting a basic doughnut recipe down thanks to developing a winning batch of apple cider doughnuts (click to view), I’ve enjoyed doing some flavor variations. But, I always find canned pumpkin a trickier ingredient to work into recipes. It adds liquid with out adding much to the wet ingredients. And it can sometimes bake up weird. I once had this chocolate-pumkpin cake mini fail (thus the lack of that recipe in my collection) that never baked up properly. I baked it and baked it and baked it, and it just never set. Silly, pumpkin. Silly, me. Though, I am now reminded that I’d like to finish that recipe to share with you guys. The concept was great, I just failed at the execution.

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Luckily, this batch turned out to be a winner, so I finally have a recipe (for the doughnuts, at least) to share.

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Healthier Baked Pumpkin Doughnuts {Recipe}
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Here’s a quick & easy dessert that’s a perfect use of leftover canned pumpkin. I’m loving baked doughnuts because I can make them so quickly and they’re just so darned good. One batch never lasts long in our house. We gobble them right up and you can, too, with this recipe.
*Vegetarian, Vegan options listed*
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Serves: 6
Ingredients
  • ¾ cup Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
  • ¼ cup, plus ¼ cup granulated sugar (preferably raw, brown sugar would probably be delicious)
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon, plus ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ cup canned pumpkin
  • ¼ cup milk of choice
  • 1 large egg (or sub flaxseed egg)
  • ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon white vinegar
Instructions
  1. Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees F. Prepare a 6-count doughnut pan (rub with butter, brush with melted butter, brush with oil, or spray with non-stick spray).
  2. In a medium-large bowl, add flour, ¼ cup sugar, baking powder, baking soda, ½ teaspoon cinnamon, and salt. Whisk to combine.
  3. In another medium-large bowl, whisk together pumpkin and milk. Whisk in egg. Add vanilla extract and white vinegar and whisk to combine.
  4. Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients and gently mix until just combined (careful to not over-mix).
  5. Evenly distribute in doughnut pan. Note: This dough is pretty thick, so you’ll want to spread the tops as flat as possible using the back of a spoon or spatula.
  6. Tap pan on counter to release air bubbles. Bake for 7-9 minutes, until doughnuts are cooked through (when a toothpick inserted into the doughnut comes out clean). (Mine were perfect at 8 minutes, but oven temperatures can vary, so check at 7 minutes)
  7. In a small bowl, whisk together (or stir with fork) ¼ cup granulated sugar and ½ teaspoon cinnamon until cinnamon is evenly mixed in. When doughnuts are safe to tough, but while they’re still warm, dip each side into the cinnamon-sugar mixture, pressing and twisting to get good coverage.
  8. Serve and enjoy!
Notes
Since I’ve stopped using non-stick spray, I find rubbing butter or brushing melted butter in the doughnut pan seems to work best. I’ve also had good success brushing the pan with oil. The doughnuts will pull away from the pan a bit as they cool.

***

You may also like these TCL recipes:

Or these from around the web:

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Thanks for reading and for trying out some of my recipes! I saw on Pinterest that some people were making some of my recipes for their Thanksgiving celebrations, which made me feel so honored. It’s always a treat for me when someone takes the time to make one of my recipes, especially for a special event. Thank you again and happy cooking & baking!

PS It’s almost 9pm, and I have so much more to say in this blog. I should really consider blogging at this time more often, as opposed to blogging at midnight, which is when this usually happens.

Coconut Pumpkin Pie with Creamy Coconut Sauce {Recipe}

Though I had fun experimenting with the tofu pumpkin pie I made this past weekend, I really wanted to try something a little different. I considered the idea of using milk instead of tofu, and I’ve really been enjoying coconut products lately. So, when I remembered I had a can of coconut cream that I picked up at Trader Joe’s hoping to make something fun, I thought of this…

Coconut Pumpkin Pie with Creamy Coconut Sauce

Ok, the sauce was a bit of an accident. I tried to make some whipped cream with the coconut cream that I didn’t put into the pie, but it didn’t quite work out. See, when I opened the can of coconut cream, it was quite thick and hard to get out with the spatula I was using. As I worked my way down the can, I realized there was a bunch of liquid in the bottom (I thought only the coconut milk separated…oops). I thought about pouring the liquid out, but then I thought maybe it’s supposed to be mixed in since it’s coconut “cream” and already thicker than coconut milk. I emptied the entire contents of the can, liquid and all, into a bowl and blended them together with a hand-held mixer. Big mistake. Well, big mistake as far as making whipped cream went. The pie was great. But you know what, I just went with it. Instead of coconut whipped cream, I had a creamy coconut sauce. It was similar to whipped cream, but not as stiff. It was, however, still quite delicious.

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Coconut Pumpkin Pie with Creamy Coconut Sauce

Here’s a fun play on the traditional pumpkin pie. I love the combination of pumpkin and coconut so much that I applied it to a pie concept. I like to make my Oat Pie Crust (which is also vegan), which I’ll let cool for at least 5-10 minutes before I put the filling together. The coconut flakes on top will toast while the pie bakes. Delicious!

This pie is best made in the morning on the day you want to serve it or the day before you want to serve it. This allows for cooling of the pie for setting and coconut cream for the sauce. If you make this pie the day before, store in the refrigerator after coming to room temperature.

Prep time: 5 minutes for pie, 5 minutes for sauce
Bake time: 60 minutes
Total time: 70 minutes, plus time to cool – you’ll want to plan for at least an hour or so
Yields: 1 9-inch pie

*Vegetarian, Vegan*

Ingredients:

  • 1 ready-to-use pie crust (I used my homemade Oat Pie Crust , which is delicious with this since it has some coconut flakes in it)
  • 1 14-ounce can coconut cream (not coconut milk – I found this at Trader Joe’s)
  • 1 15-ounce can canned pumpkin (NOT pumpkin pie filling)
  • 2/3 cup sugar (preferably raw)
  • 1/4 cup, plus 2-3 tablespoons finely shredded coconut flakes
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons powdered sugar (plus additional if needed, to taste)

Directions:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Pour coconut cream (solid and liquid portions, if they’ve separated) into a large bowl (the type of bowl you would use to make whipped cream). Mix (I used a hand-held mixer on medium speed) until solids and liquids are combined. Measure out 3/4 cup and set aside. Cover the bowl (with the rest of the coconut cream) place in refrigerator.
  3. Combine pumpkin, 3/4 cup coconut cream, sugar, coconut flakes, cornstarch, pumpkin pie spice, vanilla extract, and salt together in a large bowl. Mix together until evenly combined.
  4. Pour pie filling into prepared pie crust, sprinkle top with coconut flakes, and bake for approximately 1 hour (I actually baked mine for 65 minutes) or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out mostly clean. Allow to cool to room temperature. Note: If you’re not going to serve immediately, place room temperature pie in the refrigerator until you’re ready to serve.
  5. Just before serving, remove bowl of remaining coconut cream from the refrigerator and uncover. Using a handheld mixer or whisk, beat until the sauce becomes creamy and thickens a bit. It won’t be whipped cream consistency, but it will thicken slightly. Mix in powdered sugar (adding additional, if needed). Spoon a little sauce over each piece of pie before serving.

Notes/Tips:

  • You can mix the pie filling by hand, but I used a handheld mixer on low till the dry ingredients started to incorporate (so they didn’t fly out of the bowl) and then went on medium speed.
  • Check crust once or twice (especially if using my Oat Crust) to ensure the edges aren’t burning. Add crust edge cover (or use aluminum foil on edges) to prevent crust edges from burning. Be careful removing pie from oven, especially if using a flimsy tin foil pie dish because it will make the top crack. You could try putting the foil dish into a firmer pie dish or on top of a baking sheet during baking to prevent the pie from squishing in when you take it out of the oven.

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