7 Thanksgiving Traditions You need to start this year!

7 Thanksgiving Traditions You need to start this year!

7 Thanksgiving Traditions.jpg

Thanksgiving is just around the corner and every year I feel like Thanksgiving is mostly made up of cooking and sitting around which is totally fine but it got me thinking. I want the kids to look back and remember the fun memories we had together. When I was a child our thanksgiving literally consisted of 20+ people squeezed into a kitchen snacking on finger foods and starving at the same time. My parents had a lot of mouths to feed plus relatives so the last thing they could do was entertain the kids and with a family of 7 kids we were kind of expected to entertain each other. Well to sum it up we all got a little bored. So this year I decided to make a time schedule for meals and prepare things ahead of time so I can spend a little more time on Thanksgiving day playing with the kids instead of getting them out of the kitchen. 

1. Movie Marathon -  Yes a movie marathon! I mean you can keep the movies playing all day long while you come and go. However there is a list of a few sentimental films that I think are thanksgiving appropriate. Obviously you know what the first one is going to be:

  •  Planes, Trains and Automobiles,
  • Rocky
  •  The Charlie Brown Thanksgiving
  • Friends season 8 episode 9 - The one with the rumor
  • Son-in-Law

Thats just a few to get you started! 

2. Try a new Recipe - Scour pinterest there is 1000's of recipe on there that I know would make for the perfect dish on thanksgiving or maybe you might be interested in trying a gluten-free thanksgiving for any guest that you might have over who have allergies. 

3. Break a wishbone - Now if you haven't been doing this well... Just hop on the band wagon and get on it! This is an old time american thanksgiving tradition plus its kinda fun!

4. Holiday Wassail - I love cider and this one just tops my list. Its like drinking all your Thanksgiving and Christmas dreams in a warm mug. 

5. Create a Charlie Brown Thanksgiving meal after watching the movie!       ( Buttered toast, popcorn, pretzel twists and jelly beans! ) The kids will love it!!!

6. Let the kids help make butter while the food is cooking. - Here and there you will be in the kitchen and if you absolutely cannot get the little ones to leave have them shake heavy whipping cream in a mason jar. They'll be doing it for a while and it will keep them busy allowing you to get things done. Plus who doesn't love fresh butter on those hot thanksgiving rolls!!!

7. Make Pilgrim and Indian photo props to take pictures with! Such fun memories to create and the kids will remember it for years to come!

 

If you have any traditions that are an absolute must let me know in the comments below! I would love to hear about them! 

3 ingredient Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Donuts

3 ingredient Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Donuts

Delicious and Simple

Only have 25 minutes? Great! Your in luck! These Donuts are SO easy and so heavenly tasting it will be your go to treat plus who doesn't love donuts? But the best thing is that YOU are making them which means you get the first taste of amazingly delicious warm donuts! Who doesn't love warm donuts?! I love warm donuts!  Everyone does!

Literally I cannot emphasize this enough. MAKE THESE DONUTS. I made these for a get together and they were gone within the first 10 minutes! 

A little tip though. Do not wash the donut pan in the dishwasher. Hand wash and towel dry. You'll thank me later. 

Fresh Hot out of the oven coated in a brown sugar and cinnamon mixture.  My house smelled like a bakery.

I tried brown sugar and cinnamon as well as granulated sugar and cinnamon and both tasted amazing! You can never go wrong coating donuts in sugar!

3 Ingredient Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Donuts 

 

  • 1 can Pumpkin
  • 1 box Spice Cake
  • 1 tsp Pumpkin pie spice (optional)
  • Cinnamon Sugar mixture (Brown sugar & Cinnamon or Granulated sugar & Cinnamon)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Mix pumpkin, cake mix and pumpkin pie spice together. 
  3. Grease your donut pan so that the donuts easily release.
  4. Cook for 12 minutes.
  5. After taking them out of the oven coat them in the cinnamon sugar mixture while donuts are hot. 
  6. Eat or let cool.  

Enjoy! 

 

Pumpkin Spice Macarons

Pumpkin Spice Macarons

I'll just start out that these were delicious. They may have not been super pretty but they were delicious! And Yes... Skyler approved of these as well so they get that Sky Stamp of approval!

My friend from church told me that she uses a little cheat sheet with drawn circles on parchment paper under another sheet of parchment paper that is used so she can make perfectly circle macarons. Her macarons are gorgeous. This is my 3rd attempt at macarons so I say these are okay..

Obviously not gorgeous but they did turn out delicious and I only had to impress the family so it worked! 

I have used this recipe in other variations and it is a reliable recipe as long as you remember to whip the crap out of your egg whites. I'm talking STIFF PEAKS. My last blog post on Lavender macarons I had several people tell me their cookies turned into a runny mess. Your egg whites must be thick like whip cream consistency. Use a kitchen aid, hand mixer whatever you have that isn't your own hand or you will be sitting there forever. 

Pumpkin Spice Macarons

Ingredients:

  • 275 g. ground almonds (almond flour)
  • 250 g. confectioners' sugar
  • 6 egg whites + half egg white (separated as indicated in instructions)
  • 210 g. caster sugar
  • a few drops food coloring or food coloring gel
  • 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice 

Filling:

  • 8 ounce cream cheese
  • 1/4 cup pumpkin puree 
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp clove

Materials:

  • Parchment Paper
  • Baking Sheets
  • Piping bag fitted with 1/2 inch round tip (you can also use a Ziploc bag with the corner cut off.)

Sift almond flour & confectioners’ sugar together in a bowl to remove any lumps, set aside. In a clean, dry bowl, whisk the 6 egg whites to a foam (or soft peak stage). Once they are foamy, add a third of the granulated sugar, whip for another minute until sugar is dissolved; add another third of the sugar, whip for another minute; finally add the remainder of the sugar and whip for one more minute. Using a rubber spatula, gently fold the sifted mixture of almond flour & confectioners’ sugar into the egg whites. Add a few drops of food coloring as desired; keep in mind that the color fades a bit while baking. In a separate small bowl, whisk the remaining ½ egg white until frothy; then add to the final mixture, folding gently to slightly loosen the batter.

Transfer the mixture to the piping bag fitted with the round tip. On a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, pipe macaron rounds 1 ¼-1 ½ inches. Lightly tap the sheets so the macarons spread fully.

Preheat oven to 300° Fahrenheit. Allow the macarons to sit uncovered until they form a thin shell on the outside (so you can lightly touch the macarons without the batter sticking to your fingers). This will take anywhere from 10 minutes up to an hour on very humid days. Bake for 15-17 minutes until they form a slight crust.

Allow to cool completely on baking sheet. Remove carefully & sandwich your favorite jam, frosting, or filling between two cookies—a little filling goes a long way. These should be stored covered in the refrigerator. If you can practice enough self-control, wait to eat these until they’ve spent the night in the fridge. I don’t know what it is, but something magical happens to these bad boys overnight & they taste twice as good the next day!

Harry Potter Pumpkin Pasties Copycat Recipe

Hogsmeade Pumpkin Pasties 

Pumpkin Pasties - Harry Potter

Clear back to 4th grade (I just turned 25) I remember sitting in school listening to Mrs. Scoles read Harry Potter and the Philosphers(Sorcerers) Stone. And the magic started then for me. I think there was a huge obsession with witches at that time in my life. I actually recall reading any kind of book that involved witches. In school I dressed up as a witch for the book The Little Witch for a book report as well as making a diorama of a witch scene from the book The Witches. With that being said I took a liking to the entire Harry Potter series, so when the movies came out you can imagine how fun it really was for myself as a little girl. 

In July I started the books over this time listening to them on Audible. I am currently about to finish The Goblet of Fire but can I just tell you how awesome it is listening to the books! I am a mom of routine which means I have a lot to do. So what better way to fold laundry or run on the treadmill than to listen to Harry Potter while I do it!

This last weekend we had a Harry Potter marathon. It started Friday and ended Sunday Evening. So Friday while Imogen was at school I baked Hogsmeade Pumpkin Pasties we also made Butterbeer to go with our Pumpkin Pasties. They were delicious! Imogen couldn't believe that we were eating the same food that Harry Potter had eaten while on the Hogwarts Express his first year on his way to Hogwarts School of witchcraft and wizardry. He bought them when he had realized that Ron did not have much to eat on their train ride. 

 “What she did have were Bertie Bott's Every Flavor Beans, Drooble's Best Blowing Gum, Chocolate Frogs, Pumpkin Pasties, Cauldron Cakes, Licorice Wands, and a number of other strange things Harry had never seen in his life.”

 

You can bet that as soon as that bell rang Friday afternoon Imogen ran like the wind so we could race home to get our Harry Potter Marathon on.

Pumpkin Pasties Harry Potter

Both of my girls loved them and I know that Artis (the 7 month old) would have too had he tried them. And if you've read my blog before the ultimate judge of all my cooking is Skyler(husband) his opinion counts and I will say this. Nothing that does not get his approval makes the blog. So that should tell you just how delicious these were. Not to mention incredibly simple. 

Pumpkin Pasties Harry Potter

 

They are literally handheld Pumpkin Pies. Served best when warm. And of course eaten with a mountain of whip cream even though they really did not need it at all. 

Hogsmeade Pumpkin Pasties

Wizarding World of Harry Potter Copycat Recipe 

 

  • 1 Cup Pumpkie Pie Puree 
  • 1/4 cup sugar 
  • 1/2 t pumpkin pie spice
  • 3-4 Chocolate chip Morsels (optional)
  • 1/4 cup Kerrygold unsalted butter 
  • 2 eggs
  • Pre-Packaged rollout pie crust.
  • Clove Spice & Brown sugar 
  1. Pre-heat oven at 350
  2. Mix pumpkin, sugar, pumpkin pie spice and butter (softened) together.
  3. Roll out Pie crust. Using a circle cookie cutter or mason jar lid cut as many circles out of your pie crust as possible. 
  4. Mix egg mixture together to make and egg wash. Then brush the egg onto the cut out pieces of crust. 
  5. Cut an opening in the middle of your cutout pie crust for the pie crust that will be used to cover your pumpkin. ( I made a lightening bolt. )
  6. Place a tablespoon of the pumpkin mixture in the middle of the pie crust. After doing so place another circle cut out pie crust on top. Use a fork to seal the ends together.
  7. Sprinkle on ground clove and brown sugar over your egg washed pie crust.
  8. Place your pumpkin pasties on a parchment paper lined baking sheet.
  9. Bake for 10-12 minutes.
  10. Serve Warm with lots of whip cream!

Enjoy! Let me know how you like it!

 

 

Raw Power Salad

Raw Power Salad

Alright... its been way too long since my last blog post and I am totally sorry! To make up for that I want to give you my most favorite salad recipe! This last month has been totally crazy we vacationed in Idaho and Utah visiting family and it was a lot of fun, but I am SO relived to finally be home. 3 weeks is way too long to vacation with little ones. Its more work I would say. Living out of suitcase attempting to keep someone elses home clean while your kids destroy it all day long. Its tough work! They weren't joking when they said keeping your house clean with kids is like brushing your teeth with oreos it just doesn't work! With that being said we are home now and I've never missed SoCal more. (That says a lot for a girl who doesn't want to live here.) Living in a place where there are no seasons is tough on a girl who lives for Autumn :)  

- Also this picture is from dinner last night so if you are wondering what I had its called Sicilian Chicken Sausage from Trader Joes and yes. It was DELICIOUS. 

This salad is probably the best salad you'll ever eat for multiple reasons. But for the 2 biggest and major reasons its because 1. Its incredibly delicious. Its always important to me that food taste good and has good texture. My husband he loves good food but if something is nutritious and taste terrible he'll eat it anyways and I am just not like that at all. I love to savor the ingredients. Food definitely needs to be palatable  2. It has power foods. If you know me then you know that I am big into eating power foods. If I can eat anything that will ensure that I will get lots of vitamins via food then heck ya! I am bound to be eating it! Plus this salad has tons of ingredients that you can snack on alone! As a mom of three I am always on the go so I snack a lot of and eating power food snacks helps with just that. Being on the go. Plus I breastfeed too so I know my little dude is getting the best possible nutrition. Also this is paleo! I always like to say that although I do try to eat mostly paleo I do believe eating things in moderation is OK. 

 

Raw Power Salad

serves 3-4

  • 3 cups finely chopped kale ( stems removed and discarded)
  • 1 cup broccoli florets, finely chopped
  • 2 medium carrots peeled and shredded
  • 1/2 cup chopped bell pepper
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced scallions
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped parsley 
  • 2 T raw sunflower seeds
  • 2 T raw sesame seeds
  • 2-3 pitted Medjool dates, chopped
  • 2-3 T fresh lemon juice
  • 1 T olive oil or coconut oil
  • 1 T Grade B Maple Syrup orhoney ( I like to do 1/2 tablespoon of both honey and syrup)
  • 1 T finely grated ginger root
  • Sea Salt to taste

In a large mixing bowl, combine the kale, broccoli, carrots, bell pepper, scallions, parsley, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds,  and dates. In a small bowl whisk together the lemon juice, olive or coconut oil, maple syrup/honey and ginger to combine. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss to coat. Season to taste with salt. Let salad stand at room temperature for at least 15 minutes before serving. 

Also! I really love adding edamame and thin coconut chips to the salad. Like I said I love texture! 

 

Let me know what you think of the salad or if you add anything different! I love changing it up!