So to continue with the pumpkin fun, I went out on a limb and tried a new recipe combining two things I usually don’t like together: pumpkin and chocolate. I think the reasoning behind this is that I am not a big fan of cinnamon with chocolate…I like fudgy rich chocolate all on its own or pumpkin pie with all its cinnamon and nutmegy scrumptiousness! But I figured for the sake of the fall season, I’d give them a whirl! Not gonna lie, they’re not my favorite, but I figure I’ll share just in case some of you love the choco-pumpkin combo! You can start with any standard brownie recipe you have/love/typically use or even go with a boxed version to save some time and energy (don’t worry, no one will scoff at the idea)…and then just swirl or layer in the pumpkin cream cheese mixture. Here’s the recipe I used:
- 5 oz chocolate (I prefer to use semisweet Ghiradelli)
- 1 cup butter
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 4 eggs
- 1 T vanilla
- 1 cup flour
- Dash of salt
Melt chocolate and butter together in saucepan over medium heat or in a double boiler over boiling water. Remove from heat once almost melted and stir until smooth, and stir in sugar. Add in eggs, vanilla and dash of salt. Fold in flour and pour into buttered pan (I like to use 9X9 because I love super thick, extra rich brownies, but this does increase cooking time and it is standard to use a 9X13 pan)!
- 4 oz cream cheese
- 1 egg
- 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
- 3 T sugar
- 1 1/2 – 2 t pumpkin pie spice (or cinnamon and nutmeg combo, whatever you prefer)
Beat softened cream cheese with pumpkin puree. Add in egg, sugar and spices. If you put the pumpkin cream cheese layer between half the brownie batter, you can either leave it as a separate layer in the middle of the brownies or swirl in with top layer of brownie batter. Or just spread it atop the brownie batter and leave it as its own layer on the top…however you prefer, it will taste the same regardless and is more a matter of presentation! Bake at 350 degrees for 40-45 minutes!
Not the best pic but it’ll do!!
I would also like to share with you the easiest recipe in the world. Also one that is perfect for cold nights or when you are feeling under the weather! It is Josh’s family’s chicken noodle soup and it is hearty and delicious and most importantly incredibly easy!
3 chicken breasts
1 bag of shredded carrots or you can shred/dice your own (personal preference)
4 ribs celery, diced
14 cups chicken broth or stock
2 packages Reames Homestyle Egg Noodles
Salt and Pepper to taste
I like to sprinkle the chicken with salt and pepper, then grill it before adding it into the soup instead of letting it cook in the soup, I think it adds a bit more flavor! So while that’s grilling, heat up the chicken stock/broth/bouillon cubes and add the diced carrots, celery, salt and pepper. Once boiling, add in the noodles, cook for about 5 minutes then lower heat and let simmer about a half hour. With so few ingredients, the keys here are to use quality chicken broth or stock since it is a main flavor component, to let it simmer for a bit so the chicken flavor creeps into all of the veggies and chicken itself, and to use these particular noodles (they are pretty much the star in this soup, being so thick and gummy)! You can find the noodles in the freezer section of the grocery store, by frozen breads and pastas! Served with take-and-bake ciabatta bread rolls (our personal favorite), this is a great, easy, quick and filling dinner!
Most of the broth has already been soaked up…easy fix, just add a cup or so more of broth when re-heating!