Skip to main content

Pumpkin Pie Fruit Leather Recipe & Our Fall Hike



October is here, how did that happen?  Time seems to have flown, summer is gone, and now we have chilly air and blaze-orange trees--a perfect time of the year to make some fall-flavored treats!

We had an abundance of kabocha squash in our garden this year.  Kabocha is similar to butternut squash in taste and texture, but looks kinda like a green pumpkin in appearance:






This squash seemed perfect for making fruit leather (or fruit roll-ups as some call them).  Fruit leather is simply pureed and dehydrated fruit (or vegetables in the case of squash).  Once it is dehydrated, it can be cut into strips and rolled up, making for a portable and excellent tasting snack.  The sugar becomes concentrated once the fruit is dehydrated, making it sweet, but without the high fructose corn syrup like the ones you buy at the store.

You could actually puree your squash and dehydrate it plain--it would be tasty--but, being in the Autumn-y mood I was, I decided to try a pumpkin pie version of fruit leather.  You can use a home dehydrator with a fruit leather tray if you have one, but if not, your oven should work just as well.

Pumpkin Pie Fruit Leather

1 cup pureed winter squash, such as pumpkin, kabocha, or butternut
1 cup applesauce
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie seasoning (or your own blend of cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and allspice)
1-2 Tablespoons honey (optional)

Combine ingredients in a medium sized bowl.

If you are using a home dehydrator, pour the mixture into a lightly oiled fruit leather tray.  The puree should be about 1/4" thick.  Dehydrate at 135 degrees F for four to eight hours, or until the puree is no longer wet or sticky, but still pliable.

If you will be drying in an oven, line a baking sheet with parchment paper.  Set your oven to its lowest temperature--usually, this is around 150 degrees F.  Spread the puree over the parchment paper at a 1/4" thickness.  Bake for three to twelve hours, until the puree is no longer wet or sticky, but still pliable, and can be peeled from the parchment paper. You'll want to check periodically to be sure the leather doesn't become too dried out.

Cut the fruit leather into wedges or strips, and roll them up by placing a piece of leather on an equal sized piece of parchment paper, and then rolling.  Store in an airtight container, in a cool, dry place.  These should keep for about a month, but they probably wont last that long anyway.


And now for our fall hike...


Now, it would have been a great idea to make some of those Pumpkin Pie Fruit Leathers before our hike on Sunday, but instead I ended up doing it after we got back.  Despite our lack of fruit leather, our Sunday hike at Timm's Hill in northern Wisconsin was a great time.



Timm's hill is Wisconsin's highest geographic point.  At 1,951.5 feet above sea level, it may not seem that high to those living in more mountainous areas, but to us flat-landers, it's pretty impressive.  It sure left me breathless when I got to the top, and not just because I'm five months pregnant and we took a long hike around the hill before actually climbing to the top--the view is magnificent!


Just don't look down!


We started by taking the park loop around the hill.  It was a mild autumn day, which made for a beautiful stroll through the trees.



 As we walked along this trail, we passed Timm's Lake, looking beautiful in the autumn sun.






While walking, we noticed an arrowed sign pointing the way to a Prayer Cabin, so we decided to check it out.  This put us about a half mile from the hill, down a dirt road leading to the cabin.  The cabin was on top of a big hill (so many hills, pant, pant).



I'm not sure exactly what the story is behind this cabin.  Inside, you will find a couch and love seat, with a coffee table in the middle of it all, displaying some Holy Bibles.  On the walls, quotes from scripture are neatly carved all around.  There is a ladder, leading to a second story loft as well.  This was a great place to catch my breath and admire the view (and a good chance for the kids to be camera hams).


After resting for a bit, we headed back toward Timm's hill.


By this point, I was getting a bit sweaty and dreaming about my sub sandwich waiting for me in the cooler.  But we kept on, until we reached the observation tower at the top of Timm's Hill.


Then the climb up the stairs began.  It was unusually crowded on the day we came for our hike; I guess we weren't the only ones intrigued by the autumn-view the tower would offer.  We had to fight our way up the stairs while others were making their way down.  But eventually, we made it to the top, and lo and behold, my aching legs were forgotten as I gazed out over countryside.


A nice lady even offered to take a picture of our family for us at the top.


It was crowded at the top of the tower, so we made our way down sooner than I would have liked.  The hike back was easy, though walking down a steep hill does present it's own challenges, and we were back to the picnic area in no time, where my sub sandwich was hungrily devoured. 

Comments

  1. well worth all the hard work...beautiful photos...love the family photo...you don't even looked winded or sweaty..

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Deb :) Luckily, there was a cool breeze at the top of the tower to cool me off.

      Delete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Why Did My Chicken Lay That Strange Egg? {Decoding 10 Chicken Laying Issues}

What do you got?

A huge egg with two yolks in it?  A wrinkly misshapen egg?  An egg with a soft shell?  Or perhaps the all-inclusive just plain weird looking egg?

Whatever it is, I hope to help clear up some of the mystery behind:

Why Did My Chicken Lay That Strange Egg?

My Experience Using Homemade Baby Formula: It Is Possible!

I wanted to exclusively breastfeed my twins, I really did.



And I thought I could.  While I was pregnant, I read books and articles all emphasizing the fact that the more milk you express, the more milk you will make, so there is no reason a mom shouldn't be able to feed twins or even triplets exclusively on breast milk.  For whatever reason, however, my boobies didn't quite understand this theory.  My babies were feeding constantly, but never seemed to get full.  And worse, they were barely gaining any weight.  I was starting to get very worried about my Baby Girl and Little Man.




My pediatrician at the time was absolutely no help.  I was told that I needed to offer them the breast more frequently, though I'm not sure how that was possible since I was already constantly feeding them--seriously, I couldn't even go to the bathroom without them screaming because my boob wasn't in their mouth.  I was also told that they weren't latching on correctly.

The nurse at m…

Homemade Drain Cleaner

To avoid clogging and bad odors, sink and tub drains should be periodically cleaned.

A once a month cleaning with a non-toxic, homemade cleaner prevents needing a stronger, usually sodium hydroxide (lye) based, cleaner to remove clogs.  Sodium hydroxide is extremely caustic, and will damage the lungs if inhaled, burn skin and eyes, and can be fatal if swallowed.  In addition, the heat generated by using sodium hydroxide can soften PVC pipes, and damage old, corroded pipes.  It also changes the pH of water and can cause fish kills.

A much nicer alternative to this harsh chemical is the simple combination of baking soda and vinegar, followed with boiling water.  When baking soda and vinegar are combined, they foam and expand, cleaning the sides of your pipes and dissolving fatty acids.  The boiling water then washes it all away.  This method is a great way to use up the box of baking soda in your frig that is not longer doing a good job of deodorizing.

Ingredients:

1 Cup baking soda
2 C…