Last week, on one of the endless days of rain and thick cloud cover, I stayed home from school to recuperate from early mornings and what felt like a hive activity for the past few weeks since school restarted for the new year. It was one of those days where very little was going on, so Mum and I got to spend the afternoon together in our cosiest socks and big thick sweaters. I spent the morning beautifying this blog, focusing on adding more pictures and clarifying the little details which had been bothering me for some time, so it was nice to completely relax when she got home from work.
Lunch was only something small to curb our hunger, so when four o'clock came around, and after we'd taken the dog out for a walk to the lake and back, we both felt the need for a little pick-me-up and something to hold tightly in our hands to warm ourselves up. The wind had chapped our lips as we strolled beside the lake, shards of ice perched on top of each other along the shores after being pushed aside by the strong wind. There was a slight breeze as we wandered, and the clouds threatened rain in small droplets that fell infrequently onto our heads and shoulders.
We came home in a flurry as the rain picked up and quickened. Mum put on the fire to heat up the house, and I turned up the stove to make a drink to heat us up. It was then that we both ended up choosing our favourite spots on separate sofas after sipping warm smoothies, and curled up around iPads in the nooks of our arms, absorbed in the trials of our preferred shows and covered in soft blankets. The fire blazed on; the animals snoozed peacefully.
I wish every day could be as peaceful as that day was, instead, I try and stay warm bundled in a big knitted scarf and a hot beanie on my stomach today while studying for an exam. I might just make another smoothie to remind myself of that day, and to sip while I try to memorise vocabulary.
Before I get too carried away with the goodness of these smoothies, I must quickly tell you how amazing they are. As in, you must make them today, tomorrow morning, next week. In the summer after a day at the beach with ice, in the winter by the fire in a steaming mug. And for the pumpkin obsessed (oops, that's me!), try this for breakfast too. Then, as you take the first sip, you'll realise that this really is the most delicious, creamiest, smoothest, drink ever.
Try a favourite gluten free cookie with your smoothies as well, they're delicious when dunked - see how long you can keep them in without them falling apart!
They'll be your neighbours favourite, and your friends favourite, too.
Go ahead, see what pumpkin can really do.
Warm Pumpkin Spiced Smoothie
Print recipe here.
If you thought pumpkin pie was just for Thanksgiving and Christmas - think again! You can pick up a can of pumpkin pie mix from your local grocery store, or puréed pumpkin, all year round. Serve this warm smoothie as an after dinner dessert, or quickly heat it up on the stove to start your day with just the right amount of sugar and spice.
Using canned pumpkin pie mix sweetens the drink, so there's no need to add sugar, and by adding a little extra spices it will bring out the pumpkin flavour a little more when paired with the coconut milk (this can be substituted with any choice of alternative). Try using pure puréed pumpkin if you'd prefer to adjust the sweetness, I recommend doubling the amount of spices listed below and add brown sugar or honey to sweeten, then simmer for an additional 10 minutes to develop the rich flavours of all the spices.
For a creamier dessert, serve these smoothies with a spoonful of vanilla Greek yogourt (the thick kind works best), and provide a spoon to eat.
1 cup unsweetened coconut milk (the beverage kind)
1 cup water
1/2 cup pumpkin pie mix
Dash of vanilla extract
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp cloves
1/4 tsp allspice powder
2 cinnamon sticks to serve
In a medium sized sauce pan on the stove, whisk together coconut milk, water and pumpkin pie mix.
Add in vanilla and spices and bring to a near boil.
Simmer for a few minutes (3 to 5), whisking repeatedly.
Strain into two large mugs and serve with a cinnamon stick. Top with yogourt if desired.
Labels: Christmas, Cinnamon, coconut, cozy, drink, fall, pie, pumpkin, purée, smoothie, spice, sweet, thanksgiving, warm, winter