21 October 2009

Donuts. Mmm.

Last weekend after a lovely slumber party with the girls (and Brad), Lindsay and I decided to take advantage of the beautiful fall day and hit up the cider mill. Specifically, the Dexter Cider Mill, which I've been wanting to check out for years (especially after Lisa's glowing review of their cider slushie). I'm pretty sure we were both instantly smitten with the charming little mill. No $15 parking fee, no entrance fee, no 500 people milling about -- just a simple shop, mill, and outdoor seating area along the river. I was disappointed to find the slushie machine empty (gasp!), but otherwise, I'm madly in love with the Dexter Cider Mill -- the smell alone is worth the trip. We each grabbed some cider and cinnamon sugar donuts, Lindsay picked up a bag of Northern Spy apples, and we headed out back to enjoy our loot and the scenery.

Just one donut?

Heck no! A whole bag of donuts!

Everything was perfect. The company, the location, the AMAZING donuts and cider... I definitely hope to make it back out there again this fall. Need more donuts!

Next up, time to get some pumpkins! There's a farm down the street that I pass on the way to the dog park. Its front yard of pumpkins for sale has been taunting me for weeks, and Sunday I finally got Brad to stop and help me pick some out.

While I love a traditional orange pumpkin, I'm a sucker for the crazy ones, too. I figured I can grab a regular pumpkin anywhere, anytime, so I mostly grabbed some of the more interesting varieties. I can't get enough of the light green fairy tale pumpkins -- even better that I found one that looks like a squished witch's face.

The pumpkins made instant friends with new owl lantern.

Keeping with the fall theme, yesterday I decided to whip up some pumpkin soup with one of the pie pumpkins I picked up a few weeks ago. Brad and I fell in love with a pumpkin soup we had in Paris... and [foreshadow!] I should have known that I couldn't possibly re-create it...

I found this recipe and used it as the basis for the soup. It sounded a little bland (and the reviews said so as well), so I added a ton more spices -- more sage, some crushed red pepper, a little cumin, tons of pepper... And veggie broth instead of chicken stock. And this just proves why I SO need a real food processor:


AND a pain in my butt. I hate you, batches!

Because I couldn't puree really with my stupid food processor, the soup's consistency wasn't anywhere near what I'd hoped. And I have to assume some of the flavor was lost in the chunks that didn't get chopped up. But I powered forward, hoping it would surprise me.

Looks tasty, at least. Right?

It was definitely still a little bland, despite my attempts to spice it up. I typically like thick, chunky soups, too, but I was just annoyed with the outcome. Was it edible? Sure. Did it taste like pumpkin? Not really. So it didn't really hit the spot. The upside is that Brad seemed pleased and even asked me to give him the leftovers for lunch. Hmm... I guess I'll just have to try again when I get my new processor. Something to look forward to!

Finally, I'd like to take a moment to thank the fantastic E. sisters for sharing their Aunt Sally with me, and, of course, the fantastic Aunt Sally for a lovely lunch. (You may remember my rave review of Aunt Sally's Alaskan salmon jerky.) And, if she couldn't get any fantasticer, Aunt Sally even knitted a scarf to add to our Christmas hospital donation project!!

And it's not just any scarf. It's knitted from a pattern of the the Seamen's Church Institute, who knit scarves, hats, and socks for sailors. How cool is that? (And fits right in my current knitting theme -- I just finished my second hat from a WWII army pattern.) It also got me thinking -- my dad was in the Navy, so it makes sense that he definitely needs one of these for Xmas. :) Anyway, thanks thanks thanks... And it was so very very nice to meet you finally, Sally!


Lady Lisa said...

awww, so glad you finally got to the Dexter Cider Mill, but bummed about no slushies! Perhaps we should go again on Saturday??? I have to tell you though, I'm addicted to the pumpkin donuts that Wasum's right near me has...that could override slushes!

Sara said...

Fun fun fun! I want those donuts so bad! I wasn't going to bother buying a pumpkin this year, but I just say this boiling the seeds technique to get rid of the pulp.

Maybe be worth it!

jes-m-r said...

Awol, dude, awol.