Happy Fall Y’all!
One of my favourite things about Autumn is the warm smell of cloves, cinnamon and ginger, rounded out with a couple of other aromatics that make up…you guessed it, that famous pumpkin pie spice blend.
Everywhere you go, it seems like we’ve gone koo koo over this whole flavour profile with the omnipresent Pumpkin Spice Latte (PSL), pumpkin spice ice cream, pumpkin pie cookies, pumpkin pie spice chips, and pumpkin spice condoms…wait…what?? Who even…? PS chips and condoms? I mean, C’mon! Is this a joke?
That’s not even the worst of it – because Pumpkin Spice Season keeps starting earlier and earlier every year. I saw it in August at a popular coffee chain, while we were experiencing 20ºC weather here in K-town. Sighhhh. Don’t get me wrong, I love pumpkin and pumpkin spice – but that’s Way. Too. Soon. Especially considering the cult-following of the original PSL and how bad it is for you. Then, factor in its ‘limited time’ and ‘seasonal’ status, and you know some people are going to have a PSL every day until it goes into hibernation again.
I know, I know, if someone is having a PSL, they’re not doing it for its nutritional content, but a quick internet search will tell you that it has a whopping 300 calories, 11 grams of fat and 39 grams of sugar when you order a tall PSL with 2% milk and whipped cream. That’s 300 calories for a beverage. That’s 11 grams of fat – the bulk of which is saturated. And that’s 10 teaspoons of processed sweetener in one go – when WHO recommends that people have under 6 teaspoons a day. And that isn’t even addressing the weird random ingredients – Potassium sorbate, sulfiting agents, carageenan…is that supposed to sound appetizing?
Well, it doesn’t to me. On the bright side, it is still possible to find peace with pumpkin spice. So, we’re including 2 yummy choices for eating and drinking below – enjoy!
Pumpkin Spice Fruit Salad
- 2 Apple (peeled and chopped into cubes)
- 2 Pear (peeled and chopped into cubes)
- 1 1/4 cups
- Grapes (seedless, halved)
- 1 tbsp Lemon Juice
- 2 tbsps Maple Syrup
- 1 tsp Pumpkin Pie Spice
- Combine the apples, pears and grapes in a bowl and toss well.
- Combine the lemon juice, maple syrup and pumpkin pie spice in a small jar. Stir well to mix, then pour it over the fruit. Toss the fruit salad until everything is coated.
- Serve immediately or keep covered in the fridge.
Pumpkin Pie Smoothie
- 2 cups almond milk or other non-dairy milk of choice
- 2 Tbsp hemp seeds
- 1 cup canned pumpkin puree
- 1 Tbsp blackstrap molasses
- 1 Tbsp pure maple syrup (or to taste)
- 2 ½ tsp pumpkin pie spice or you can substitute 2 tsp cinnamon+ ½ tsp ground ginger + ¼ tsp ground nutmeg + a pinch of ground clove
- 4-5 ice cubes
- Put all ingredients (except ice cubes) in your blender and blend until combined.
- Add ice cubes and blend until smooth.
- You can refrigerate this for a day or two and enjoy it in 2 servings.
- For a fancier version, garnish with mint leaves, sliced figs and slivered almonds. Serve with alternating layers of Greek yogurt for a parfait.