(Featured Recipe: Gluten-Free Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Pancakes with Dark Chocolate Sauce and Pumpkin Seeds)
There’s something spectacular and amazing that happens every fall- A Pumpkin CRAZE! Many of us buy pumpkin this and pumpkin that…such as pumpkins for indoor and outdoor home decor; pumpkin spice lattes, teas and other beverages; and pumpkin-themed clothing and jewelry. And I’m certain a couple of pumpkin items come to your mind as well.
The Season for Sweet and Savory Pumpkin Dishes
If you’re anything like me, then this is the season when you become inspired to make pumpkin flavored sweet and savory foods, using some of your favorite old recipes and even trying some new ones. I love the flavor of pumpkin soups and breads. Sometimes, I’ll double or triple my recipes, so I can store extra batches of soup or loaves of sweet breads and muffins in the freezer to enjoy throughout the season.
Short Trip to Trader Joe’s for Some Old Favorites and Pumpkin Goodies
My sister, nieces and I drove out to Trader Joe’s on the first official day of fall, which was on a Saturday…a 90°F Saturday, so it didn’t feel much like fall. But we enjoyed our little excursion despite the high heat. The closest Trader Joe’s is about 40 minutes from where we live- for this reason, we don’t make regular trips to the store; we were definitely looking forward to our trip to Trader Joe’s so we could stock up on some items.
During our grocery trip, we purchased some of our favorites: palak paneer, channa masala, spring rolls, vegetable masala burgers and other frozen meals; naan bread, white chocolate chips, Vermont pure maple syrup and coconut milk; and, of course, pumpkin snacks and goodies that included pancake mix, cereal bars, pumpkin seeds and granola bark.
My Pumpkin To-Do List and Pumpkin Treats to Try
There are several items on my to-do list to shop for and also to make this fall- items like pumpkin cider, pumpkin seed brittle, pumpkin spice granola, pumpkin salsa, pumpkin spread with cream cheese (or Greek yogurt), and pumpkin smoothie.
The Dark Chocolate-Dipped Pumpkin Seed Brittle– a little spicy, sweet, salty and made with (also topped with) toasted pumpkin seeds for crunchiness- will be a first for me. I’m really looking forward to seeing how it turns out. For a simple homemade brittle, you can visit epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/pumpkin-seed-brittle-15334. The brittle is made using toasted pumpkin seeds for even more flavor. My choice of pumpkin seeds to use in this recipe are Trader Joe’s Pumpkin Spiced Pumpkin Seeds.
A pumpkin dessert I very much look forward to indulging in are Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Pancakes with Dark Chocolate Sauce (see recipe below) made with Trader Joe’s Gluten Free Pumpkin Pancake Mix and topped with Trader Joe’s Pumpkin Spiced Pumpkin Seeds.
My biggest undertaking will be to make a completely from scratch pumpkin pie with a homemade crust and a whole pumpkin that I pick from the pumpkin patch. The messy part of this whole task will be to clean and scoop out the goopy, stringy insides of the pumpkin. I don’t look forward to that part, but I do look forward to the roasted pumpkin filling. YUM!
What kinds of pumpkin snacks and goodies do you look forward to treating yourself to this fall? Please comment with some of your favorites (old favorites and even new) below.
|GLUTEN-FREE PUMPKIN CHOCOLATE CHIP PANCAKES WITH DARK CHOCOLATE SAUCE AND PUMPKIN SEEDS
Recipe By Shirell Dalton, The Simple Chocolatier
Prep: 7 minutes Cook: 18 minutes Yields about 1/2 dozen pancakes
1 cup Trader Joe’s Gluten Free Pumpkin Pancake Mix (follow the package directions)
1/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
Dark Chocolate Sauce:
1 cup coconut milk (use canned coconut milk or So Delicious Culinary Coconut Milk)
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1/4 cup raw honey
1/4 cup quality bittersweet chocolate chips
1/4 cup quality semi-sweet chocolate chips
Trader Joe’s Pumpkin Spiced Pumpkin Seeds
pure maple syrup or raw honey (optional)
Follow the package directions to make the pumpkin pancake batter. Fold in the chocolate chips then place the batter in the refrigerator. Make the chocolate sauce then set the sauce aside. Once the chocolate sauce has been made and set aside, remove the pancake batter from the refrigerator and cook the mixture according to the package directions. Stack pancakes and pour maple syrup (or honey) then chocolate sauce over the top then top with the pumpkin spiced pumpkin seeds.
To make the Dark Chocolate Sauce– In a small saucepan, heat the coconut milk, butter and honey over medium low heat until it simmers to a light boil. Add the chocolate chips then gently whisk until the chocolate chips are completely melted. Remove the saucepan from the heat and set aside. To store any unused portion of chocolate sauce, allow the sauce to cool then pour it in an airtight container. Store it in the refrigerator for up to one week.
Extra–Spiced Gluten Free Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Pancakes– Follow pancake mix package directions. To the dry mixture, add 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg, 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice, 1/8 teaspoon ground ginger, 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves, and 1/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips. To the wet mixture, add 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla. Gently mix (do not overmix) and cook pancake batter according to package directions. Pour chocolate sauce over the pancakes and top with pumpkin seeds.
Dark Chocolate Sauce with Raw Cacao– In a small bowl, whisk together 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons raw cacao (cocoa powder can also be used), 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons unrefined sugar, and 2 tablespoons tapioca starch. Set the bowl aside. In a small saucepan on medium low, heat 1-3/4 cups coconut milk (use canned coconut milk or So Delicious Culinary Coconut Milk) and 1 tablespoon unsalted butter. Slowly add and whisk the dry ingredients into the saucepan of coconut milk and butter. Remove from heat then add 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla (optional).
Dessert Topping- Use the Dark Chocolate Sauce and Trader Joe’s Pumpkin Spiced Pumpkin Seeds as a topping for your favorite ice-cream (or ice cream sundae) and other desserts.
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Lovin’ 💕the DESSERTS