Sunday, October 23, 2011

Chili-Orange Spiced Walnuts

With Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas all quickly approaching - and the gatherings that come with them - I'm always on the lookout for tasty snacks that can be prepared in advance and kept on hand in case of unexpected visitors.  Here's one that I whipped up this afternoon on a whim:  It's based on the classic recipe of an egg white and sugar coating walnuts or pecans, but with a spicy kick.  A touch of orange juice and extract combined with a fair amount of black pepper and chili powder make this recipe suitable for hungry cooks and cocktail parties alike.  This recipe also takes well to doubling - and if you've got a big crowd, these sweet-spicy nibbles will go quickly!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Pumpkin Spice Bread

Happy October!  Also, Happy 50th Posting from The Lunchbox Tree!  I'm taking a few days off of my "day job" to go visit family in Texas, which I'm incredibly excited about.  But I made a quick batch of pumpkin bread for my coworkers before my departure.
    In the fall, you'll find me making at least one batch - ok, probably more like a half a dozen batches - of pumpkin breads, pumpkin muffins, pumpkin bread puddings, etc.  I love the smell of these quick breads as they bake in my oven.  I love eating them warm with a tiny smear of butter or cream cheese, or totally unadorned.  With a cup of hot coffee or tea, this makes the perfect mid-day snack for crisp autumn days. Not to mention, this recipe makes 2 loaves, so I can share one and keep one all to myself.

    I hope you all have a wonderful October!  Here's to the chilly nights and comforting foods that the season brings!