Saturday, October 27, 2007


It was a rainy, windy, cold fall day today, the kind of day that screams lounge around in your pyjamas, drink coffee, hang out with your family and do a whole lot of puttering, or nothing at all. Colin is sick, I'm fighting a cold and Ethan's had a busy week- we all have- so today we stayed home. Never went out at all. And it was nice, different for us.

So, first thing, I finally finished another hat for my mom. I'd cut out the pieces weeks ago and then it sat. So, now it's done. It's okay, but not as cute as the other one, which I liked better. It's more of a headwrap with ties at the back. I looked kind of unkempt this morning while making it, so a picture on the table will have to modelling in my pyjamas is not something I'm willing to post!

After lunch, when my boys went for a nap, I settled into the kitchen for some cooking and what we call Saturday schlock TV around here, also known as the weekend afternoon movie on W network. It's usually a lame & mindless movie, often based on a Danielle Steel novel (remember her?), but it's just what I do. Now you know my little indulgence :)

First up, Cream of Mushroom soup. Colin loves the Campbell's version but I think I can do a better job with less sodium and less fat. He said he's fine with Campbell's, I told him he doesn't know how good the real thing can be. He rolled his eyes...oh wait, that was me. And so it went. But I'm determined.

So, I think it turned out great. I used portabellos, white mushrooms and a couple of handfuls of dried porcinis. Basic cream soup recipe (actually uses no cream at all, just milk and stock) from the Williams Sonoma Mastering Soups & Stews book. Really yummy. E loved it, had two bowls for a post-nap snack. Colin will have some tomorrow, so we'll see whether I measure up to the mighty Campbell's.

Then, I made these cookies. They're really really good.....all soft and moist and spicy. (Just so you know, I only post the good stuff here....don't want you to think that everything I make is "really really good"- sadly it's not!) They're low fat and I think the possible combinations of flours, and additions of nuts, seeds, whatever, are endless. My "helper" and I had a great time making these.

Whole Grain Pumpkin Cookies
Adapted from a Prevention magazine recipe
(updated after further "testing", on November 4/07)

1 ½ -2 cups sugar (I used organic raw cane sugar)
2 ½ cups rolled oats
½ cup millet (or substitute some seeds or nuts)
3 cups spelt flour (or other gluten containing flour like all purpose or whole wheat cake & pastry)
1 ½ cups whole wheat cake and pastry flour or amaranth flour (or substitute a non gluten containing flour like soy, quinoa, or arrowroot)
5 ¼ teaspoons baking soda
1 ½ teaspoon baking powder
1 ½ teaspoon salt
6 teaspoons ground cinnamon
2-3 teaspoons ground nutmeg
3 tablespoons flax seeds (optional)
1 cup raisins (optional), or use a mixture of other dried fruits
Seeds and nuts, as desired (optional)
1 ½ cups pumpkin puree
3 tablespoons canola oil
2 tablespoons water
6 egg whites
1 tablespoon molasses

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
2. In a large bowl, whisk together sugar, oats, flours, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, flax seeds and raisins.
3. Whisk together pumpkin, canola oil, water, egg whites, and molasses.
4. Add dry ingredients to wet. Mix together. Let batter sit for 15-30 minutes, if using whole grain flours like spelt.
5. Form heaped teaspoon size balls, and flatten slightly on a baking sheet.
6. Bake for 8-10 minutes in preheated oven. Cool slightly on cookie sheet before transferring to rack.

Makes 3-4 dozen cookies.

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