Saturday, October 26, 2013

Pumpkin Spice Creamer

It has been awhile since I have been very active on my blog.  Life has been hectic.  Every week I think I will have time to blog but something comes up.  I started a long term substitute position in a library in August.  It has been so much fun and I get to stay until Christmas Break.  Hopefully it will help me to get a full time position in my own classroom.  At the same time I have been busy at home spending time with my three year old.  Yes, I said THREE.  I can't believe she is growing so fast.  Also, the husband finally got to start working first shift, so he is actually home with us.  We've been soaking up the family time.  I have still been cooking and experimenting but it will take me awhile to catch up here.  I will work on it but it may be during breaks that I have a surge in blog posts.  For now, I have also discovered why people like coffee!  I stopped drinking pop a few months ago.  So I never get any caffeine unless I get a tea or coffee.  At home, our tea is decaf and I never drink more than one coffee at a time.  But, since I get up at 4 AM now in order to get to work (it's quite a commute for me at this point), I have a little trouble getting myself going.  Especially now that the weather has gotten colder.

Anyway, I love the pumpkin spice lattes from Starbucks, but I hate the ingredients and price.  I found several recipes online to make your own pumpkin spice creamer.  I wasn't completely satisfied with any of them.  I already make my own plain sweet creamer and I have already posted the recipe for that.  I easily turned that into a pumpkin spice creamer.  Here is how:

1 can evaporated milk
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1 cup pureed pumpkin (canned or fresh)
1/2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice

In a saucepan, heat 1/2 the can of evaporated milk, pumpkin and pumpkin pie spice to a low simmer.  Whisk together until this comes to a simmer, then take it off of the heat.  Let this cool completely.  When it is cool, whisk in the rest of the evaporated milk and the sweetened condensed milk.  Pour into two mason jars.  This will stay good in the refrigerator for a week.  I put one in the fridge to use and one in the freezer to save.  You could also give one away for gifts OR you could keep one at home and one at work if you drink both places.  It is very good.  I believe I outdid Starbucks with this one.

Honey Garlic Pork Chops

I have been busy with my new temporary job and I have been trying to make meals that can be made quickly and easily.  They also have to be good warmed up for lunches at work.  We prefer to eat homemade foods rather than eating out or buying pre-made boxed foods.  The easiest way for easy, quick, healthy, homemade meals is to use marinades.  I have started making up bags with marinades and putting meat in them and freezing them.  Then I can take it out of the freezer the night before, and it's ready the next night for cooking. This is one of the marinades we have been using for pork chops.

1/4 cup honey
1/2 cup apple juice
2 Tbsp. oil (I usually use grapeseed or olive)
3 Tbsp. coconut aminos (This is what we use to replace soy sauce.)
6 garlic cloves, minced
4 pork chops (I use boneless.  I hate eating around bones.)

In a ziploc bag, add all ingredients and close and mix around.  Let marinade for at least 2 hours.  Once marinated, grill or bake.  We grilled and loved them.  But if you can't grill, bake in a preheated oven for 35 minutes at 350 degrees.

I got this recipe from Pinterest and just replaced the soy sauce.  To see the original post, look here