Where to begin? I guess the best place to start is at the beginning. Thanksgiving week (yes, week) hit an all-time high this year. While we held true to our southern roots and traditions- deep fried turkey, cooked salami, candied yams with toasted marshmallows, too good too be true stuffing, brussle sprouts and more dessert options than guests (ok, that’s definitely an exaggeration since there were 60 people at thanksgiving this year… but we had at least 10 different desserts)- we also welcomed a few new traditions that, now, I cannot imagine thanksgiving without. You know, same same… but different.
After our usual thanksgiving morning 5-mile charity run, The Boulevard Bolt (yes my dad ran it in 40 minutes!!), a newcomer to the infamous brunch buffet was delicious organic, homemade salmon jerky, flown in all the way from Seattle, Washington. The usual insanity followed with deep-frying the turkeys in hilarious turkey hats, the ceremonious carving of said turkeys, toasting of the marshmallows and hovering around the cooked salami. And just when we were about to dig into the main fare, believe it or not, we actually did something patriotic. We sang, not on tune or in the correct pitch, America The Beautiful. Now, I’d like all of you to take a second and picture what it would sound like for 60 tone-deaf individuals, some Persian, some southern, trying to sing on key for a good 2 minutes. (ah!) Let’s just say that video will never be released. Then, after working up an appetite, we ate. Then ate some more. Then went in for dessert. Among the pumpkin and pecan pies, oatmeal raisin cookies, and banana pudding with flambéed meringue, sat the all-star dessert of the weekend… Pumpkin Chocolate Chip cake. Now, I cannot take credit for this mouth-watering dessert, it comes from a great friend’s family recipe, the original version I would not dare divulge. But in the spirit of giving and thanking, it was thanksgiving after all, I would first like to personally thank Yael for handing over the original version, and I would like to give my “healthified” version to all of y’all (it’s below). There is really, honestly and truly, nothing better than this cake. (Funnily enough, it’s the only dessert I don’t have a picture of… most likely due to the fact that it was eaten in .10 seconds)
only half of the food
But moving on… the rest of the weekend was spent eating one too many grilled cheeses at The Grilled Cheeserie truck, playing football in gorgeous 70 degree weather (ok ok ok, I didn’t actually play but I watched), filming a school project for my cousin (shout out to recyclin’ Ronnie!), watching the Titans beat the Buccaneers, Ringo showing off his tricks, and doing a lot of nothing with the people I am thankful to have in my life.
us playing football- we look a little scattered
professionals playing football... a little less scattered
So, this is when you decide to run out and buy everything you don’t have on the ingredient list and make this cake. Then you can thank me after, or even better, send me a piece in the mail! Definitely going to make oatmeal pumpkin chocolate chunk cookies next. Happy (belated) Thanksgiving!! (Also, didn’t have room for a good camera in my bag this year so the trusty iPhone camera had to make due… sorry for the blurry pics!)
Yael’s Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cake Reconstructed
Makes 1 large bundt cake or 24 cupcakes
1 cup margarine or canola oil
1 cup unsweetened agave
¾ cup sugar (or stevia)
2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
½ tsp cinnamon
½ tsp pumpkin pie spice (optional)
½ tsp salt
2 cups pumpkin (One can of Libby’s organic 15 oz)
1 cup chocolate chunks (not to be mistaken for chips)
What you’ll need.. two mixing bowls, hand held electric mixer and either a bundt pan or cupcake pan.
Preheat the oven to 350F degrees.
Start by creaming margarine, agave and sugar together on medium power with a hand held mixer in a large bowl. Then beat in eggs one at a time.
In a second bowl, sift together dry ingredients (flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, and salt).
Slowly add dry into wet, and alternate dry ingredients and pumpkin into the wet ingredients.
Lastly, fold in the chunks.
Spray pan or cupcake holders with pam/olive oil or other nonstick spray. If baking in bundt pan, make for 55 minutes – 1 hour. If baking cupcakes, check after 15-20 minutes (generally takes 25 minutes).
I usually add a little pumpkin pie spice to parve vanilla icing and frost the cupcakes with a pumpkin spiced frosting!
how cute were we? the biggest bows possible, check!