Pumpkin Pie Sangria

pumpkin sangria
Recipe and photo credit: http://www.delish.com/cooking/recipe-ideas/recipes/a56371/pumpkin-pie-sangria-recipe/


  • 1 bottle white wine, chilled
  • 1 bottle sparkling cider, chilled
  • 1/2 c. pumpkin pie vodka
  • 1 pear, chopped
  • 1 apple, chopped
  • 1/4 c. sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. pumpkin spice
  • Cinnamon sticks, for garnish


  1. On a small shallow plate, combine sugar and pumpkin spice and mix to combine. Rim glasses with a piece of apple and dip glasses into mixture. Set aside.
  2. In a large pitcher, combine wine with cider and pumpkin pie vodka. Add chopped fruit and stir to combine. Pour into glasses and garnish with a cinnamon stick.

Pumpkin Pie by Paula Deen

pumpkin pie
Recipe & Photo credit: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/paula-deen/pumpkin-pie-recipe-1941963


  • 1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
  • 2 cups canned pumpkin, mashed
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg plus 2 egg yolks, slightly beaten
  • 1 cup half-and-half
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) melted butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger, optional
  • 1 piece pre-made pie dough
  • Whipped cream, for topping


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Place 1 piece of pre-made pie dough down into a (9-inch) pie pan and press down along the bottom and all sides. Pinch and crimp the edges together to make a pretty pattern. Put the pie shell back into the freezer for 1 hour to firm up. Fit a piece of aluminum foil to cover the inside of the shell completely. Fill the shell up to the edges with pie weights or dried beans (about 2 pounds) and place it in the oven. Bake for 10 minutes, remove the foil and pie weights and bake for another 10 minutes or until the crust is dried out and beginning to color.

For the filling, in a large mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese with a hand mixer. Add the pumpkin and beat until combined. Add the sugar and salt, and beat until combined. Add the eggs mixed with the yolks, half-and-half, and melted butter, and beat until combined. Finally, add the vanilla, cinnamon, and ginger, if using, and beat until incorporated.

Pour the filling into the warm prepared pie crust and bake for 50 minutes, or until the center is set. Place the pie on a wire rack and cool to room temperature. Cut into slices and top each piece with a generous amount of whipped cream.

Holiday Fruitcake


Taste of Home shares their holiday fruitcake recipe.


  • 3 cups whole red and green candied cherries
  • 3 cups diced candied pineapple
  • 1 package (1 pound) shelled walnuts
  • 1 package (10 ounces) golden raisins
  • 1 cup shortening
  •   1 cup sugar
  •   5 eggs
  • 4 tablespoons vanilla extract
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  •   3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Read more: http://www.tasteofhome.com/recipes/holiday-fruitcake#ixzz3KgbSwRcI


  1. Preheat oven to 300°. In a large bowl, combine cherries, pineapple, walnuts and raisins; set aside.
  2. In another large bowl, cream shortening and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Combine flour, baking powder and salt; add to creamed mixture and mix well. Pour over fruit mixture and stir to coat.
  3. Transfer to a greased and floured 10-in. tube pan. Bake 2 hours or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes before removing from pan to a wire rack to cool completely.
  4. Wrap tightly and store in a cool place. Slice with a serrated knife; bring to room temperature before serving. Yield: 16 servings.
Originally published as Holiday Fruitcake in Country December/January 2001, p51

Gingerbread Cheesecake



Martha Stewart shows us how to make Gingerbread Cheesecake for the holidays.


  • All-purpose flour, for dusting
  • 1/4 recipe of the dough for Molasses-Gingerbread Cookies
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 pounds cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 4 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup unsulfured molasses
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
  • 6 gingerbread men (see above)


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Wrap exterior of a 9-inch springform pan in 2 layers of foil.
  2. On a generously floured piece of parchment, roll dough to a 13-by-10-inch rectangle, about 1/4 inch thick. Brush off excess flour. Slide dough and parchment onto a baking sheet. Bake until firm and golden brown, about 14 minutes. Let cool completely on sheet on a wire rack. Break into large pieces, then pulse in a food processor until finely ground.
  3. Combine butter, 1/4 cup sugar, and 2 cups cookie crumbs in a bowl. Press mixture firmly and evenly into bottom and one-third of the way up sides of prepared pan. Bake until set, about 10 minutes. Let cool on rack.
  4. Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees. Beat cream cheese with a mixer on medium speed until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Beat in remaining 1 1/2 cups sugar and the vanilla, scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Reduce speed to low. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition and scraping sides of bowl as needed. Beat in molasses, salt, spices, and lemon zest. Pour filling into cooled crust.
  5. Place cheesecake in a large, shallow roasting pan. Transfer to oven, and carefully add enough hot water to roasting pan to come about halfway up sides of springform pan. Bake until cheesecake is set but still slightly wobbly in center, 60 to 65 minutes. Carefully remove springform pan from roasting pan, and let cool on a wire rack. Refrigerate, uncovered, for at least 8 hours (preferably overnight).
  6. Before serving, run a hot knife around edges of cheesecake to loosen, and remove sides of pan. Arrange gingerbread cookies in center of cake in a circle (with heads facing inward and arms touching, alternating light and dark).

Thanksgiving Decor Ideas

thanksgiving decor 1

Cranberry Flowers: this This simple and sweet centerpiece will not get in the way of dinner or conversation. Simply lay a table runner in the center of your table, place three cognac glasses on top of the runner, fill the glasses with cranberries to the rim, and place one flower on top of the glass. Try to pick a flower that is full in appearance to cover the entire top of the glass. Try a Carnation, Chrysanthemum, Phlox, Queen Ann’s Lace, or Statice, all of which are in season.

Source: http://pinterest.com/pin/258042253619008269/

thanksgiving decor 2

Turkey Leg: This playful turkey leg is perfect for letting the kids know where to sit at the kid’s table! Using a brown paper bag, push in the bottom corners twisting the bag into desired shape. Use carstock to create the “bone” and precut letters to spell out each guest’s name. You can fill these “legs” with newspaper, popcorn, or candy!

Source: http://www2.fiskars.com/Activities/Crafting/Articles/Thanksgiving-Kids-Table

thanksgiving decor 3

Organic Napkins: This simple napkin display also doubles as a place setting. Place the wheat onto your rolled napkin, tie it together with twine (wrap it at least 2 times to keep the pinch). Before you tie a knot with your twine, attach a name charm.

You can also replace the wheat with mini ears of dried Indian corn for a more colorful display.

thanksgiving decor 4

Source: Wheat: http://www.libbyjamesblog.com/2010/11/30/wheat-is-sweet/

Corn: http://www.allyou.com/budget-home/easy-decorating/thanksgiving-table-decorations-00411000073591/page7.html

thanksgiving decor 5

Printed Leaf: Love your napkin rings and want to show them off this thanksgiving? Add a bit of an earthy tone to them by inserting a leaf with your guests’ names written on it with a white paint pen.

Source: http://www.jeannewinters.com/2008/11/thanksgiving-ideas-giveaway-winner.html

Pilgrim Punch



Perfect for Thanksgiving, Lauren Conrad shows us how to make Pilgrim Punch!

Pilgrim Punch

Serves 5


1 cup of organic apple juice

1 cup of sugar-free cranberry juice

1/4th a cup of vodka

1 ½ cups of ginger ale

Sprig of rosemary

4 cranberries

  1. Combine apple juice and cranberry juice
  2. Pour vodka and ginger ale into the juices and stir.
  3. Serve chilled and garnish with one sprig of rosemary and cranberries.