Friday, December 3, 2010

Pumpkin Butter

Ever since I surprised you all with the news that it was raining in Seattle, it's been beautiful and sunny. Cool, crisp, and fall-like, but sunny. Hopefully this won't jinx it back the other way, because the sun has been very welcome. I've been taking advantage of it to by walking along the river than runs through town. There's a great walking/biking path that seems to go on forever right next to the water, and it's accessible to the new apartment complex, which is great. Accessible meaning I walk out the door, turn left twice, and I'm there. Now (thank goodness) I finally have a response to getting totally called out on Personal Best, at least until it stops being fall again.

Back in the day when I lived in Louisville, my friends and I would treat ourselves occasionally and head out to the Whole Foods. One thing I found there, only in the fall, was pumpkin butter. But it was butter with pumpkin in it, not the usual fruit butter. I discovered that wheat bread, dabbed with this butter, and popped in the toaster oven was a great autumn snack. Warm, a little sweet, and with my favorite flavor of the season.

So this week, I set to recreate this fall treat, and I'm sharing my experiment with you. It's not exactly the same as what I'm remembering, but I think that's mostly due to the fact that this version is made with vegan butter, and not butter. Vegan butter is a great substitute, but it's not exactly the same. Good, though.

Pumpkin Butter
1 stick vegan butter, softened
1 Tbsp sugar
3 Tbsp pumpkin pie spice
1/4 C + 2 tbsp pumpkin

Put everything in a bowl and beat until well combined.

That's it, you're done!

You can also do this in a food processor, which might work better for large batches. I've tried both and for this size, I prefer the mixer.

There are lots of variations on this- herbed butters, orange cinnamon butter, honey walnut butter. The sky's pretty much the limit, and it's easy to experiment. If you make a large batch, you can divide it up into small jars and set one out at every place setting at a dinner party, or make a basket of homemade breads and butters for a friend. Bon appetit!

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