Donut Ya Know – (Pumpkin) Carve Your Own Path!

Halloween is the best holiday ever!  Fun as a kid and potentially more fun as an adult!

Usually the weekend after Canadian Thanksgiving (which coincides with the other holiday which really shouldn’t be celebrated), I host a gathering known as Pumpkin Guts and Gory where we carve pumpkins! Yeah, while it can be construed as a boring wholesome activity…

Your life can be described as a pumpkin… a blank canvas where you carve whatever path you choose (yes, if you have the means to read this blog, this statement applies to you!)… just remember that you have to accept the consequences of your actions.  Also, there is a potential to get smashed as well, but every pumpkin season, you get to carve a new path.

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2016: Left to Right: “EEK”, “Ninja Face”, “Travelocity Gnome”, “Jack Skellington” and the small one celebrates the 50th anniversary of Charlie Brown and Snoopy (yeah, not my best work… you need bigger pumpkins for more oxygen for a brighter flame!  I tried to use “digital” LED candles but they don’t “hold a candle” to candles!

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Haha… back in the day when Maxim was a witty magazine until they started having quizzes like Cosmopolitan.  There was always a devil girl advertising Altoids, the curiously strong mint.  I took that concept and applied it to a mudflap girl.

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This is the year that I got really big into archery so I made a design off Archer.  This could be the funniest cartoon ever!

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This is the year that I got really big into CrossFit so I made “Deadlift Girl.” Granted I carved it before the Force Awakens… but, hey, strong is sexy! Smart is sexy too!

I feel “Archery” and “Deadlift Girl” were better carved pumpkins due to applying the concept of negative space.

Sour Cream Pumpkin Donuts

Substitute: Milk –> 4oz Sour Cream; Pumpkin Extract (splash); Pumpkin Spice (Penzey’s – to taste).

Donut Limits Define You! – (Gluten-Free)

I got invited to a Labor Day/Housewarming Party.  One of the people that lived there can’t eat gluten (even traces of soy sauce will set her off) at all. I mean… it’s sad enough that she can’t eat Bon Chon Chicken.  Of course, I took it as a challenge to make something that she would enjoy.  But, hey, I’ve eaten GF cookies, err… cardboard before so I set out to not make it suck for everyone else!

Note: She was out of town so she can’t comment on the deliciousness of the donuts but others loved it!  Hey, life is also about timing and luck!

Gluten-Free Cake Base Recipe:

1.0 Cup King Arthur GF Flour

0.5 Cup of Almond Flour (yeah, you make Macaroons with this)

1.0 Cup of Trader Joe’s Applesauce

1.5 Teaspoon Baking Powder

1 Melted Stick of Butter (4 oz or 8 Tablespoons)

1 Egg (Large)

Icing:  Chocolate/Peanut Butter Ganache

I’ve heard people go full on Paleo and make pizza out of rice or cauliflower as the flour substitute.  So I went with the assumption that the King Arthur GF Flour would not have any flavor.  To fix this, I used Almond Flour to give some nuttiness flavor.  However, Almond Flour is dense and I would need more eggs to act as a combiner to keep the donuts together. At this point, I’d be making an omelet as it’s not gonna satisfy your sweet tooth.  I used applesauce instead of sugar and milk as the liquid portion. Hey, if I was going GF, I might as well not add more sugar for super healthiness.

Yes, at this point, I knew people would be eating a granola bar so what makes these health bars taste OK?  Chocolate!  What makes chocolate better?  Peanut butter!  Hence, the ganache.  Ganache makes it sound fancy, right?  Just equal parts of heavy whipping cream boiled onto dark chocolate… then I threw on some peanut butter!  Boom!  Taste explosion!

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So the philosophy point…  Donut Limits* Define You!  Of course, limits do set boundaries but it doesn’t mean you can’t live life like an asymptote! Life’s a journey… find ways to enjoy the ride!

*Limits can be physical, mental, emotional… or that really big guy that blocks your path!