Monday, October 3, 2011

I'll Take Some Pumpkin Pudding With A Side Of Apple Cider Cupcakes, Please

Saturday was my mom's birthday.  Since she is so fab (and was cooking us all an amazing salad luncheon on her birthday), I wanted to make her some special desserts.  She enjoys fall flavors as much as I do, so I asked my friend Nanette for her recipe for Pumpkin Pudding, and also decided to make a recipe for Apple Cider Cupcakes from a 2010 magazine Celebrate Fall by Phyllis Hoffman.

The Pumpkin Pudding was delicious!!  And the birthday girl loved it!  The recipe my friend gave me was this recipe from Rachael Ray, but I used 2 cartons of Cool Whip instead of actually whipping the heavy cream, and used cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice for the spices.  I also used those spices to make spiced Cool Whip to garnish the pudding along with the gingersnaps, and it looked and tasted so yummy, perfect to ring in the first day of October!

The kids helped me make the Apple Cider Cupcakes.  The recipe used a spiced cake mix as a starter, which was nice.  All we had to add was 1 1/3 cups apple cider, 1/3 cup vegetable oil, 3 large eggs (we each got to crack one!), 2/3 cup shredded Braeburn or Gala apples (I used gala, it was about one good sized apple shredded in my mini chopper).  Beat everything but apples for 30 seconds on low then 2 minutes on high, then folded in the shredded apple.  Baked them at 350 for 18-21 minutes.

The recipe called for a basic butter/confectioner's sugar frosting with apple cider instead of milk, but I decided to do a marshmallow cream frosting.  I used 1 small jar marshmallow cream, 1 softened stick of butter, around 3 cups confectioners sugar, 3/4 tsp vanilla, and apple cider as needed.  After I frosted them, I sprinkled them with cinnamon sugar.

When I got to my mom's house, I put the cupcakes on her metal tiered stand that I am almost as jealous of as her pie table.  I have to often remind myself that we are not supposed to covet our neighbor's house or oxen, or our mother's pie table.  It can be hard some days!  :)

I have an amazing mother.  She inspires me in so many ways, but mostly in how she has lived her life for others, sacrificing so much of her own wants and time for other people.  I imagine she will be great in the kingdom of God because she is a true servant.  She is also a woman of joy, character, class, kindness, generosity, understanding, discernment, fun, and so much more.  I am blessed beyond women to have been raised by a woman such as this.

And just to give her a little shout-out, my mom has recently lost over 50 pounds using Weight Watchers as a guide for nutritious eating and portion control!  You can't see the whole thing, but that necklace she is wearing has been a part of her journey.  When she started in January, she bought beads at Michael's and added one for each pound lost.  Madi often helps her pick out the next bead to add to her necklace, and we have been cheering her on as each one has gone on her chain!  I think the beauty of Weight Watchers is that it is simply healthy eating and wise choices in real life, and the point system leaves you room to have small portions of yummy treats like Pumpkin Pudding and Apple Cider Cupcakes every once in awhile!  Proud of you, Mom.   And Happy Birthday!!

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