Pumpkin Pie

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This is not a drill.  I repeat.  This is not a drill.  I successfully finished a holiday recipe–complete with pictures!–before said holiday actually happened.  I think I can officially call myself a food blogger now.  Huzzah and let the merriment begin!

(Or something along those lines).

This weekend was Friendsgiving, which I still believe is a fairly new thing, or maybe I’m just becoming an adult.  Anyways, I was told to bring dessert, as I normally am, and so obviously I had to make stereotypical Thanksgiving pumpkin pie.

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Growing up, my family always had chocolate pies at Thanksgiving, because many of my family members do not like pumpkin.  Therefore, I always thought that chocolate pies were a common American Thanksgiving tradition.  It wasn’t even that long ago that somebody clued me in on the fact that many people have never even had chocolate pie.  While this news deeply saddens me, I promise to post my chocolate pie recipe soon, and in the meantime, you should make this pumpkin pie.

The recipe itself is kind of a fluke.  While looking up pumpkin pie recipes, I realized that I didn’t have most ingredients that almost everyone uses in pumpkin pie.  In my mind, all I needed was a can of pumpkin and some common household ingredients to get this thing rollin’.  Sweetened condensed milk, evaporated milk, B grade maple syrup, freshly grated ginger?  Who has these ingredients just laying around their house?  In the midst of extreme laziness and procrastination, I decided against trekking to the grocery store in my pajamas at 11 p.m., and set out to create my own recipe.  It came out surprisingly delicious and it only takes about 20 minutes to whip up!  I got a standing ovation and everything.  Sometimes being irresponsible and unprepared really pays off!

The pie can be made a day in advance (I actually think pie is better when it’s been sitting for a day), so all you have to do on the day of Thanksgiving is whip the cream, which can be made in 4 minutes if your mixer has the will to do so and also if you don’t mind splatters.

Happy Thanksgiving!

P.S. Tin pie pans are great for Friendsgiving (inebriated friends + glass pie pans = disaster, in case you’re wondering).

P.P.S.  If you’re interested in the velvet pumpkins, my aunt makes them!  You can buy them on her etsy site.  She also makes little acorns!  They’re super cute for fall decorating 🙂

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*Song of the Day: People Help the People–Birdy

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Fall Emeralds

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I find beauty in nature that most people disregard.  I love seeing red, orange, and yellow leaves all over the ground that most people rake up as soon as the last leaf falls.  In the spring, I love my overgrown rose bushes that most prune, throwing away hundreds of chiffon-like roses.  I like it when the grass is a little shaggy and dark, dark green.  I still like everything trimmed back eventually, but for that week that it is overgrown, it’s so neat to see my backyard as an enchanted forest or secret garden.

Right now my purple wisteria is a mess of dried up, flimsy leaves and my rose bushes are reddish brown and there is a small patch of leftover snow in the shaded corner of my yard.  Fall in Reno is one of my favorite things in the world.  In the morning, it’s a bitter, dry cold.  The sky is a brilliant blue, cloudless, and bright from the sun.  It smells like sagebrush.  The city is covered in reds, oranges, browns, yellows, and greens.  I drive to class in the morning, hands cloaked in leather gloves, coffee clutched, waiting for my car to warm up enough to crank up the heat.  I listen to The National or Bon Iver.  This is how I remember Reno when I used to visit when I was a little girl.  It’s my stereotypical memory of Reno, and I long for it every year.

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I feel like my personality is fall.  My favorite colors, favorite foods, taste in music, etc.  I picked this dress because it is my favorite color.  I can dress it up or dress it down.  It’s perfect for a chilly fall day.

Also, it makes me feel like a badass witch, and all I really want in life is to be Hermione Granger, so I think I’ve accomplished all my goals.  I wore my moon necklace with it, because that’s probably what a witch would do.

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Dress: Thrifted, Bad Apple Vintage, Reno    Shoes: Old    Tights: Target    Necklace: Premier    Rings: Old, various

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*Song of the Day: Lemonworld–The National*

3 Bean Chili

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IT’S HERE.  THE SNOW.  IT’S HERE.

Also, I’m so cold right now that I’m having extreme difficulties typing, but the snow stuck today!

While I would have loved for Fall to stick around a little longer (because wearing dresses with tights is kinda my thing), I’m pretty excited for a real winter.  Living in a city surrounded by mountains is pretty much the best thing ever when it snows, because hills of green trees + white snow = the prettiest thing ever, I swear.

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In case I haven’t mentioned how oscillating Reno’s weather can be, about few days ago, it was 78* outside, and today, it was in the 30s, cloudy, rainy, snowy, stormy, etc.  In other words, it was a bad day to wear shorts with tights to class.  But I digress.  Winter lovers unite!

In celebration of the snow and almost freezing to death on my walk to class today, I decided to make one of my favorite winter meals: chili!  I love this chili, because

1. It’s easy, savory, and goes nicely with corn bread or tortillas.

2. It’s my mom’s recipe which always makes me feel at home.

3. One recipe feeds me for like, 2 weeks (if you highly disapprove of eating food that is older than a week, I apologize, just ignore this section of the list).

Bonus: It’s healthy!  I normally use ground turkey to make it a little healthier, although I like it better with ground beef.  Considering about 94% of my winter seasons are spent trying my hardest to avoid eating Christmas cookies and gravy for every meal, I love having a healthy comfort meal recipe.  (Although I am a strong advocate for eating cookies and gravy every once in a while).

Another bonus of having chili around is that if Reno decides to heat up to the 80s again (not unheard of), I can easily throw this into an omelet or serve it with some avocado and chips.  But for now, I’m going to snuggle up in a blanket with a big bowl of chili and hope for a long, cold winter.

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*Song of the Day: Baby–Devendra Banhart