Cooking at the Cove: Time to Roll Out the Pumpkin Recipes

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For extra orange flavor in these ice-cold pumpkin and carrot bars, use a few drops of wild orange essential oil or a teaspoon or two of Grand Marnier in both the batter and the icing. Karen Schneider / For the forecaster

Baked potato soup seems to be everywhere these days, but did you know how easy it is to make at home for a fraction of the cost? Not to mention the fact that when you cook at home, you have more control over what ingredients get into your body.

Karen Schneider cooks and writes in the village of Cundys Harbor. You can reach them at [email protected]

This basic recipe can be refined with bacon and cheese. Also try cooked chicken, corn, broccoli, or a packet of frozen mixed vegetables for even more variety.

Whenever you’re making soup from scratch, it’s so much better if the broth is homemade. With a little planning, you can make any type of broth and just freeze it in mason jars. It is so satisfying to have this on hand. It will add such a rich taste to your kitchen.

Having soup containers in your freezer or refrigerator is like money in the bank. Do it when you have the time and you’ll have something tasty and nutritious to spare for those evenings when you’re tired or rushed (or both). Prepare a simple salad and those cheddar biscuits and you’re done.

These autumnal biscuit bars are just the thing to bake for a harvest festival, a Halloween party or a sports award dinner. Think orange about orange about orange: pumpkin, carrots, and the juice and peel of an orange. For an additional orange “wow”, I use a few drops of doTerra’s wild orange essential oil or a teaspoon or two of Grand Marnier in both the batter and the glaze.

Baked potato soup

1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon of rapeseed oil
1 cup of onion, diced
1/2 cup celery, diced
1/2 cup red bell pepper, diced (optional)
2 cloves of garlic, chopped
4 cups of chicken or vegetable stock
1/2 cup of flour
1 teaspoon of salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
4 baked potatoes (1 1/2 pounds), skin removed, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 cup of milk
1 cup of sour cream
Fresh chives for garnish

Melt the butter and oil in a large stock pot over medium heat. Add onion, celery, paprika and garlic. Fry until tender, about 7 minutes.

Mix 1 cup of stock with flour in a bowl and stir into the pan with the vegetables. Stir in the rest of the broth, salt and pepper and potatoes. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer covered for 10 minutes. Stir in milk and sour cream and heat, making sure that it doesn’t boil. Arrange in serving bowls and sprinkle with chives. Yield: 6 servings

Bacon Cheddar Cornmeal Cookies

1 3/4 cups flour
1/2 cup yellow corn flour
1 tablespoon of baking powder
1/4 cup cold butter
3/4 cup cheddar cheese, crushed
2/3 cup of cold milk
1 egg, beaten
4 slices of crispy cooked bacon, crumbled
2 tbsp fresh chives, chopped

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. In a large bowl, mix the flour, cornmeal, and baking powder together. Cut into butter with a pastry mixer until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add the cheese, milk, egg, bacon and chives. Stir with a fork until moist.

Fall onto a lightly floured surface. Knead the dough by folding it and gently squeezing it until the dough sticks together. Gently roll the dough into an 8-inch square and cut it into nine squares. Transfer to baking sheet; Brush with additional milk.

Bake for 12-15 minutes or until golden brown. Let cool down a little on the baking sheet. Yield: 9 cookies

Carrot and pumpkin bars with orange glaze

2 cups of flour
2 teaspoons of baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon of orange peel
3 eggs, beaten
1 cup of canned pumpkin
2/3 cup canola oil
1/4 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup carrot, grated
1 cup walnuts, chopped
Walnut halves (optional)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 15 x 10 x 1 inch baking pan. In a large mixing bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, orange peel, baking soda and salt.

In a medium bowl, mix the eggs and brown sugar. Stir in the pumpkin, oil, milk and vanilla. Stir in the carrots and chopped walnuts.

Add the egg mixture to the dry ingredients and stir with a wooden spoon until everything is combined. Spread the batter into the prepared pan. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until a wooden toothpick comes out clean near the center. Let cool in the pan on a wire rack.

Brush with orange glaze, then cut into triangles or bars. Garnish with a walnut half as desired. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to three days. Yield: 36 (2 x 1 in) bars.

Orange glaze

1 1/2 cups of powdered sugar, sifted
1-2 tablespoons of orange juice

In a small bowl, mix the sugar and orange juice to a thin glaze. Pour over bars and distribute evenly.


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