Monday, October 1, 2012

Fall and the Domestic Goddess

I love Fall - everything about it really: the cool, crisp air, the changing leaves, pumpkins, apples, mums. For some reason, Fall brings out the domestic goddess in me and all I want to do is make and bake. So this weekend I got to it. On Saturday I baked Pumpkin Bread (recipe below) that filled our house with smells of cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg. I hung my Fall wreath and decorated our dining table with fall decor - I still need to purchase two candles for the candle holders but I think it still looks great.

I started knitting about seven years ago and have yet to move beyond a single hat and scarves. So I found a simple (and cute) mitten pattern, picked out some super soft yarn and started knitting my swatch so that I can check my gauge. If you're new to knitting, the best way I can describe gauge, is that it's a way to measure how closely my tension matches what the pattern calls for using a specified needle size. If my stitches are greater or lesser then I will have to change my needle size so my gauge is as close as possible to the pattern's suggestions in order to ensure that the garment is the proper size. In any case, I'm really excited about making the mittens which should be a "quick knit" and if so, it may turn out that I begin mass producing them as Christmas gifts.

Not to stop at pumpkin bread and knitting, today I made some turkey chili, producing a nice slice in between my index finger and thumb in the process. I think I may need a stitch or two but I was to busy to sit at a doctor's office so I masterfully bandaged the cut so that it stopped bleeding and aside from the throbbing, I think it's okay. The chili turned out wonderful and I made enough so that I could freeze it and have some during next Sunday's football games - another reason to love Fall.

Here is the pumpkin bread recipe. Taste of South called it "cake" but it's really a bread made in a bundt pan. I made it and shared it with friends who loved it. Enjoy!

Heavenly Holiday Pumpkin Cake

2 cups all purpose flour
2 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 1/4 cups sugar
1/3 cup all-vegetable shortening
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree
1 (8 ounce) container sour cream
3/4 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
Garnish: Confectioners' sugar

1. Preheat oven to 350. Spray a 10-cup Bundt pan with nonstick baking spray with flour.

2. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, salt, cloves, and nutmeg. Set aside.

3. In another large bowl, beat sugar and shortening until light and fluffy, a full 4 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in vanilla. Add pumpkin, mixing well.

4. Add flour mixture to pumpkin mixture, alternatively with sour cream, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Mix until just combined. Fold in nuts. Pour batter into prepared pan.

5. Bake until a wooden pick inserted in the center comes out clean, approximately 50 minutes. Let cake cool in pan for 10 minutes. Remove from pan and let cool completely on a wire rack. Dust cake with confectioners' sugar, if desired.


  1. The pumpkin cake sounds awesome! :) Fall must be so beautiful in the Carolinas, right? xoxo

    1. Elsa,

      The pumpkin cake was soooo good, especially with all the pecans. The Carolina's are really beautiful in the fall, if only the temperatures would drop another 10 degrees right NOW, it would be perfect!

  2. Replies
    1. Thanks for leaving a comment ;-) The cake really is very good, especially with all the pecans. If you're a baker, give it a shot!