Pumpkin Spice

Simon ToadSimon Toad Shipmate
edited October 29 in Heaven
I have just witnessed Stephen Colbert consume Buffalo Wings coated with Pumpkin Spice which came from a fast food restaurant. I can't remember its name. Colbert seemed not to enjoy the experience, but I can't believe the dish was at its best.

Now I have previously discovered that Buffalo Wings are actually chicken wings named after the town of Buffalo in New York. Buffalo do not have wings, and nor do Bison. Indeed creatures of a bovine variety tend to be too heavy to fly under their own steam. The exception that proves the rule are Highland Cattle in Scotland.

I did think that a spice that tasted like pumpkin was also a little unlikely, and so I found out that Pumpkin Spice is actually a mixture of cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, allspice and cloves and is used in making a pumpkin pie. Pumpkin pies are sweet, and I think that mixture is going to make kind of a sweetish flavour. I'm not sure about that.

So what we are talking about is a glaze made with those spices coated onto chicken wings and cooked in a medium oven for about 20 minutes.

They sound nice, but I'm not sure. I definitely want to try some to see. I can tell I'm going to annoy my wife with this when we are in America next month.

I've had pumpkin pie often in America - commercial and home cooked. I'm giving that the two thumbs up.

Are there any other seasonal foods that I might like to try? I will be travelling in California, Nevada, Arizona and Utah in November and am booked in for a Thanksgiving meal with a group of 16 people including little kids :smiley: . I am very much into stunt eating too.
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Comments

  • Simon Toad wrote: »
    I will be travelling in California, Nevada, Arizona and Utah in November
    When and where will you be in Arizona? If you're in the Phoenix area, we need to have a Shipmeet!

  • Simon ToadSimon Toad Shipmate
    edited October 29
    Pigwidgeon, it would be brilliant and I would love to do it, but I'm travelling with two introverts. One is flying to Canada to avoid meeting one of my classmates and my old host family, and the other asks me questions about Thanksgiving like 'how many people will be there again?' while nervously biting her nails. So she's extending her boundaries enough for me this trip.

    My two traveling companions are going to a curly-hair specialist hairdresser in San Francisco, so I'm hoping to meet up with a Shippy when they do that. Are there any famous hairdressers in Phoenix who do curly hair? I might be able to swing something next time we go over :smiley:

    Its a bugger, because I genuinely like meeting up with people, especially people who haven't experienced my stories yet :) I have one about accidentally bringing a bag of doggie doo through customs ... actually, that's one I pinched from Frank Woodley.

    As to dates, we are in the Grand Canyon between 13 and 15 Nov, then we drive to Monument Valley and back to Lake Powell on the 15th, then we are overnight at St George in Utah on the 16th before high-tailing it over the Sierras to Sacramento. We are going to stay overnight somewhere in Nevada. My feeling is Carson City. That's like 8hrs driving, so.... yeah, we are mad.

    If I was travelling alone I would cut Monument Valley and be knocking on your door looking for a feed. But I'm not and I've got to respect their needs and personalities.


  • MooMoo Kerygmania Host
    Every fall food producers come up with things that are flavored 'pumpkin spice'. I like pumpkin pie very much, but I think that anything else flavored with pumpkin spice is inedible. I bought some pumpkin spice coffee once; the flavors of coffee and pumpkin spice do nothing for each other. I am glad that pumpkin spice flavored products are widely available for only a brief season
  • sabinesabine Shipmate
    You might look for pumpkin ale. I tried it once, and it wasn't too bad for a novelty. It's seasonal.

    Pumpkin ale https://g.co/kgs/2vXaSN
  • Simon Toad wrote: »
    Are there any other seasonal foods that I might like to try? I will be travelling in California, Nevada, Arizona and Utah in November . . . .
    If you like pumpkin pie, you might give sweet potato pie a try if you can find it—it may be mainly a Southern thing, but I think it's better than pumpkin pie. (Of course, I think pumpkin tastes awful and I can't stand pumpkin pie, despite pumpkin spice being made up of my favorite spices. Give me pecan pie any day.)

  • RuthRuth Admin Emeritus
    Moo wrote: »
    I am glad that pumpkin spice flavored products are widely available for only a brief season

    Why? No one is making you eat them!

    I love all the pumpkin spice baked goods - muffins and scones, mainly. Though I did have a pumpkin spice muffin that should have been called a ginger muffin - ick.
  • Nick Tamen wrote: »
    If you like pumpkin pie, you might give sweet potato pie a try if you can find it—it may be mainly a Southern thing, but I think it's better than pumpkin pie.
    I love pumpkin pie, but it is an objective fact that sweet potato pie is superior.
    Give me pecan pie any day.)
    A good one is something special, a bad one is an overly sweet, gelatinous horror.
  • lilbuddha wrote: »
    Nick Tamen wrote: »
    Give me pecan pie any day.)
    A good one is something special, a bad one is an overly sweet, gelatinous horror.
    Very, very true. And in such instances, the sweet, gelatinous horror is typically placed in a heavy, soggy crust.

    In my experience, if the pecan pie is store-bought, the chances are very high that it is not a good one. If it's a bakery pie, all depends on how good the bakery is.

    And some bourbon never hurts.

  • Simon Toad wrote: »
    Pigwidgeon, it would be brilliant and I would love to do it, but I'm travelling with two introverts...

    Are there any famous hairdressers in Phoenix who do curly hair? I might be able to swing something next time we go over :smiley:

    ...As to dates, we are in the Grand Canyon between 13 and 15 Nov, then we drive to Monument Valley and back to Lake Powell on the 15th, then we are overnight at St George in Utah on the 16th before high-tailing it over the Sierras to Sacramento. We are going to stay overnight somewhere in Nevada. My feeling is Carson City. That's like 8hrs driving, so.... yeah, we are mad.

    If I was travelling alone I would cut Monument Valley and be knocking on your door looking for a feed. But I'm not and I've got to respect their needs and personalities.

    I'm so sorry this won't work out, but I understand. (I'm afraid I don't know of a curly hair specialist.)

    This is a perfect time of year to see the Grand Canyon -- beautiful fall colors, and possibly a sprinkling of snow. Best of all, fewer visitors than during the summer. The North Rim is closed for the season, but the South Rim is where you get to see the spectacular views. I was there a few weeks ago (just before the North Rim closed), and some of the people in my group had never been to the Canyon before. One friend commented several times "I had no idea, I just had no idea!" The expanse of it is overwhelming. (If you would like suggestions on restaurants or lodging, let me know.)

    Enjoy our beautiful (and try to ignore our politics).
  • FirenzeFirenze Heaven Host
    ...They feed you till you want to die
    On rhubarb pie and pumpkin pie,
    And horrible huckleberry pie,
    And when you summon strength to cry,
    “What is there else that I can try?”
    They stare at you in mild surprise
    And serve you other kinds of pies...
  • Pigwidgeon wrote: »
    Enjoy our beautiful (and try to ignore our politics).

    That was supposed to be "Enjoy our beautiful state..."

  • bassobasso Shipmate
    The mania for pumpkin spice is one that baffles me.
    I've shared before that a few years ago at this time of year, a barbershop locally had a signboard on the sidewalk, "Stop in for one of our pumpkin spice haircuts". Still gives me a chuckle.

    @Simon Toad , when will you be in the SF area? There are a few shippies around.
  • RossweisseRossweisse Shipmate, 8th Day Host
    lilbuddha wrote: »
    ...
    Give me pecan pie any day.)
    A good one is something special, a bad one is an overly sweet, gelatinous horror.
    Amen.


  • I am in SF between the 25th and 28th of November, but a fly in the ointment might be developing in that I might need to go back to the Sutter Creek region to see a family member that I'm going to miss over Thanksgiving. We are sorting that out now. Hopefully that uncertainty will end soon, and I will be able to confirm that the 27th is the best day for me to meet with Shippies.

    In Australia, we eat heaps of pumpkin and sweet potato as ordinary veggies. Pumpkin is usually cut up, peeled and boiled or baked/roasted. It is a common vegetable at traditional Christmases in my family. Sweet potato is usually baked/roasted. I have seen both served as a mash too, particularly in fancy restaurants where the flavour combo is treasured.

    I say baked/roasted because I usually peel and cut and stick in the oven in bits, but others will roast/bake with the skin on. I probably know the difference between the two processes, or at least I know that they are different, but I find it hard to remember things I don't pay much attention to...

    Pumpkin pie as a sweet dish, or sweet potato pie as a desert is unknown in this country, which is probably why I am keen to experience it again!
  • Pigwidgeon wrote: »
    Simon Toad wrote: »
    Pigwidgeon, it would be brilliant and I would love to do it, but I'm travelling with two introverts...

    Are there any famous hairdressers in Phoenix who do curly hair? I might be able to swing something next time we go over :smiley:

    ...As to dates, we are in the Grand Canyon between 13 and 15 Nov, then we drive to Monument Valley and back to Lake Powell on the 15th, then we are overnight at St George in Utah on the 16th before high-tailing it over the Sierras to Sacramento. We are going to stay overnight somewhere in Nevada. My feeling is Carson City. That's like 8hrs driving, so.... yeah, we are mad.

    If I was travelling alone I would cut Monument Valley and be knocking on your door looking for a feed. But I'm not and I've got to respect their needs and personalities.

    I'm so sorry this won't work out, but I understand. (I'm afraid I don't know of a curly hair specialist.)

    This is a perfect time of year to see the Grand Canyon -- beautiful fall colors, and possibly a sprinkling of snow. Best of all, fewer visitors than during the summer. The North Rim is closed for the season, but the South Rim is where you get to see the spectacular views. I was there a few weeks ago (just before the North Rim closed), and some of the people in my group had never been to the Canyon before. One friend commented several times "I had no idea, I just had no idea!" The expanse of it is overwhelming. (If you would like suggestions on restaurants or lodging, let me know.)

    Enjoy our beautiful (and try to ignore our politics).

    I'm really looking forward to it Pigwidgeon. I went to the Grand Canyon once before with my parents back in 1980, but it was covered in fog! We were disappointed, but it certainly had its own beauty in that weather. We traveled that year in an RV over winter. I'm sure my parents had no idea what they were getting into!

    We have a booking on the south rim at Thunderbird Lodge. I will be looking out for Vernon and Lady Penelope of course, and will definitely be saying "Thunderbirds are go!" when we get our room key. I'm almost certain that the staff will never have heard that before :wink: I'm probably going to be counting down from 5 allot too. Did I book the place because it was called Thunderbird Lodge? No, but it helped.

    We hadn't thought about eating, assuming we would eat in the Park's facilities. Please let me know if you have some recommendations. We travel for food!
  • In one sense, I can't believe that nobody picked me up on the Highland Cattle thing, but in another sense it is probably for the best.
  • AthrawesAthrawes Shipmate
    Simon Toad, we had grammer pie (a type of pumpkin. I'm not sure of the spelling for it, though) as a desert when growing up. It was mixed with dried mixed fruit and spices. This was in QLD and NSW, so it did/does exist. I haven't made it for years, though. Must fix that...
  • That's a new one on me Athrawes! It puts me in mind of Lady Flo, who I like to think of as a kind and generous person, albeit very conservative :)
  • Simon Toad wrote: »
    We have a booking on the south rim at Thunderbird Lodge. I will be looking out for Vernon and Lady Penelope of course, and will definitely be saying "Thunderbirds are go!" when we get our room key. I'm almost certain that the staff will never have heard that before :wink: I'm probably going to be counting down from 5 allot too. Did I book the place because it was called Thunderbird Lodge? No, but it helped.

    We hadn't thought about eating, assuming we would eat in the Park's facilities. Please let me know if you have some recommendations. We travel for food!

    I'm not familiar with the Thunderbird Lodge, but it's a great location. Most of the South Rim hotels are clean, maintained, and fairly basic. (You will have very limited access to wi-fi or cellphone connections.) I seriously doubt that anyone will pick up on "Thunderbirds are go!" or Vernon and Lady Penelope (but they'll probably think you have a cute accent). In this part of the world Thunderbird refers to Native American symbolism. (If you were in New York City it would refer to really bad wine, a favorite of those who sleep on the sidewalks with their bottle clutched in a paper bag.)

    If you're looking for a nice meal on the South Rim, I highly recommend Bright Angel Lodge (they do not take reservations but shouldn't be crowded this time of year). Several of us ate there and just loved the food and service (if you like trout, try it there!). El Tovar is old and famous -- it's also very expensive and very pretentious, as well as being very dark with dead animal heads mounted all over the place. You probably would need reservations there, but I would really suggest the Bright Angel instead. The Grand Canyon restaurants tend to have large portions, designed for those who have spent the day hiking. Except for El Tovar, the dress is pretty casual (i.e., I wore my "good" blue jeans for dinner).

    Enjoy! And please either post your experiences or PM me afterwards!

  • ClimacusClimacus Shipmate
    I was staying on the South Rim in December. It was wondrous! I can echo Pigwidgeon that serving sizes were large...even by US standards!
  • Simon Toad--

    Re visiting Grand Canyon and such like:

    Please, please, please stay away from cliff edges, especially when doing selfies. People fall and die. Recently, a couple at Yosemite (?) fell and died. And one of them had told her blog readers to be careful!

    Word to the wise.
  • Oh yeah, we got that news down here about Yosemite. Don't worry, I am not too worried about heights, but I don't like being near the edge.

    Wow! Serving sizes that Americans think are big! I dislike leaving food on my plate. I have a mother's warning about starving children in my ears and I also worry that the staff will think I dislike the food. I shall have to go into training. :)
  • Simon Toad wrote: »
    Wow! Serving sizes that Americans think are big! I dislike leaving food on my plate. I have a mother's warning about starving children in my ears and I also worry that the staff will think I dislike the food. I shall have to go into training. :)
    In the U.S., it is perfectly acceptable (and often encouraged) to ask for your leftovers to be put in a box to take with you (they used to call them doggy bags). At the Bright Angel two of my dining companions wanted the chicken breast dinner, but the menu said it included two chicken breasts. They asked our server about sharing one dinner, and he was very accommodating -- there was no charge to split the one serving, and each of them got a full-size salad even though their shared dish should have had only one. (He was tipped* accordingly!)

    *In most of the U.S., a 20% tip has gotten to be pretty standard.
  • Is that what's behind the big serves? It eases my mind somewhat. Thanks for mentioning tips too - I was thinking 10%, but shall up things accordingly.
  • Simon Toad wrote: »
    Is that what's behind the big serves? It eases my mind somewhat. Thanks for mentioning tips too - I was thinking 10%, but shall up things accordingly.
    Never go below 15% in the US. Around here, 15%–18% is considered standard, with 20% or more indicating exceptional service. But I defer to @Pigwidgeon as to the norm in the Southwest.

  • Apparently Australians are regarded as notoriously bad tippers in some parts of the US, so think of it as an opportunity to burnish our national reputation, Simon Toad :wink:
  • LothlorienLothlorien All Saints Host
    Athrawes wrote: »
    Simon Toad, we had grammer pie (a type of pumpkin. I'm not sure of the spelling for it, though) as a desert when growing up. It was mixed with dried mixed fruit and spices. This was in QLD and NSW, so it did/does exist. I haven't made it for years, though. Must fix that...

    Mum used to make that. A huge saucepanful cooked down to barely a couple of cups. I know someone here who
    Made his own version of pumpkin pie. Very sweet. Pumpkin and sweet potato need. Dry little sweetening. They are already sweet.
  • LydaLyda Shipmate
    Golden Key wrote: »
    Simon Toad--

    Re visiting Grand Canyon and such like:

    Please, please, please stay away from cliff edges, especially when doing selfies. People fall and die. Recently, a couple at Yosemite (?) fell and died. And one of them had told her blog readers to be careful!

    Word to the wise.

    I have a rule that keeps me pretty safe around cliffs: I don't get closer to the edge than one entire body length. That way I'm much more likely to fall on the ground around me than a hundred feet down. Of course if I'm really nervous the body length I measure by is Shaquille O'Neal's. :sweat_smile:
  • LOL.

    I've never been one for standing near edges, except when walking low walls and parking bumpers and such. Have a fear of heights/falling. I've met people who are actually drawn to edges, and consider *that* to be fear of heights.

    However, I can deal with rock climbing and walk-down rappel, in the right circumstances. (Proper safety measures, supportive instructors, etc. IME, Outward Bound is especially good for that.) Long ago, and a beginner, and dealt with a couple of freak-outs. But it was fun and did me good. I especially liked rappeling, because I could control the rope and didn't have to deal with tiny finger- and toe-holds on the rock.
  • basso wrote: »
    The mania for pumpkin spice is one that baffles me.
    It's supposed to be a Northeast, white farmer (or "proud of your farmer history") thing.

    https://mic.com/articles/125839/white-people-and-pumpkins-a-history#.DajudBAfT
  • Kittyville wrote: »
    Apparently Australians are regarded as notoriously bad tippers in some parts of the US, so think of it as an opportunity to burnish our national reputation, Simon Toad :wink:

    Outside of the US context, I feel like it is demeaning someone to tip them other than as an appreciation for good service at a restaurant. Its like I'm holding myself out as a rich person giving the poor charity. The classic image is the white businessman giving the black porter a little extra for carrying his bags. It doesn't feel like tipping should have a place in Australia outside of a restaurant serving posh nosh.

    That said, me and my mate have developed a habit of giving the bartender at a pub we frequent $20 as we leave, on the basis that if we keep doing it we might score a few extra large whiskeys next time. We have encountered resistance - my mate reckoned a woman from Glasgow tried to snot him and I had to explain to another what I meant by giving her money like that. Its just not expected, and sometimes (rarely, but who knows what people are thinking) seen as odd and unwelcome.

    I know in the US its about wage rates, and every trade unionist bone in my body rebels against the idea of having to both pay for a service and top up someone's pay so they have a shot at a living wage that week, and so I do always tip when I remember. But I do it glowering about the boss, and remembering some of the ugly stories from the run-through of the restaurant and catering industry here about bosses appropriating some or all of the tips, some just blatantly and others instituting a series of 'fines' for various uniform and other infringements (this is in Australia).

    So yes, I grumble about tips but understand the need for people in services to get a living wage.
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host
    When we were in Iceland and tried to tip a taxi-driver, he firmly but politely refused: tipping just isn't part of the culture there.

    I think it's very sad that American culture allows employers to pay their staff in buttons, on the assumption that they might get enough tips to make a half-decent wage.
  • Piglet wrote: »
    I think it's very sad that American culture allows employers to pay their staff in buttons, on the assumption that they might get enough tips to make a half-decent wage.
    Many of us Americans do as well. It's a terrible system.

  • DoublethinkDoublethink Shipmate
    edited November 2
    What you refer to as pumpkin spice, I think of as mulling spices (as in mulled wine) and Christmas spices - as in Christmas cake and mince pies. That said it very similar to some versions of chai spicing and some forms of Garam masala. (Chai link, Mulling link, Mince pie link, Kasmiri Garam Marsala Link)

    Given you can make curry with that spice mix, I don’t see why it wouldn’t work as a glaze with chicken. Whether it needs to be sweetened or not would depend on the dish and personal preference I guess. But if you like these flavours Middle Eastern and East Asian cuisines are well worth scoping out.
  • jedijudyjedijudy Heaven Host
    Yummy links, Doublethink!

    I do have to take exception to the Mince pie link, however. It says: A mince pie is a sweet pie of British origin, filled with a mixture of dried fruits and spices called "mincemeat", that is traditionally served during the Christmas season in the English-speaking world, excluding the USA.

    Hold on there! Not in the USA??? Mince pie is my very favorite in the universe!! I know lots of folks, both North and South, that wouldn't have Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner without mince pie!!
  • PigwidgeonPigwidgeon Shipmate
    edited November 2
    Another American here who loves mincemeat pie! It isn't the same though, since I don't have my mother's homemade mincemeat (which we had in jars in the cellar for many years after she made her last batch).
  • I'm afraid I loathe mincemeat pie, and I'm an American. Long, long time since I had any. But I think it was the combination of spices, mostly. If mace was included, that's probably it. (And yes, it has food uses.)

    But pumpkin, sweet potato, and most common fruit pies--they're great.
    :)
  • From the wiki link, I think the point was Brits tend to have individual mince pies (sort of cupcake size) whereas when eaten in the US, they tend to be full size pies ? (Closer to the original thing - I note it also says some American commercial mincemeat still has meat in.)
  • Well, a whole pie might be served to a table of guests, but they'd probably only eat 1-2 slices.
  • I think British mincemeat traditionally includes suet, as the last link to the meat it once held. And yes, the pies are nearly always small. I am not a fan, which is a Good Thing as I have a reason to say no and not gain unwanted pounds over Christmas, at least from that source!
  • Cathscats wrote: »
    I think British mincemeat traditionally includes suet...

    As did my American mother's.
  • Our American family mincemeat was also made with suet, and it would not be Thanksgiving without both mincemeat and pumpkin pies.
  • sometimes in mince pies people don't like the glazed fruity bits who's name I remembered a few ..... mixed peel. Oh hang on, that might be in fruit cake.
  • Citron? Yeah, I hate it. Mostly had it in hot cross buns as a kid, and learned to remove it before eating the bun.
  • MiliMili Shipmate
    I'm Australian and we used to have pumpkin pie every Christmas - I think made from a recipe from an American cookbook, but made with fresh butternut pumpkin (which I think is technically a squash). I've read that a lot of people in the US use pumpkin pie filling from cans instead, but I'm not sure how common that is? The reason we used to eat it is because my dad likes it, which I think stems from his childhood as a missionary kid in Ethiopia. My grandparents are Australian, but most of the other missionaries they worked with were American or Canadian and my Nanna picked up a lot of North American recipes in the years they lived there. My dad also went to a Canadian boarding school, where all the food was US and Canadian, rather than local Ethiopian food, so he might have had pumpkin pie there.

    Unfortunately one year the pie tin had got old and my mum thought the pumpkin pie tasted tinny and awful (though it tasted fine to me) and never made it again! I think it is a bit fiddly so that may be another reason. It has also put me off making it myself, though I've meant to for ages. I must get the recipe off mum and try this year.

    My dad does make a delicious tomato soup cake out of the same recipe book, which has similar spices to pumpkin spice in it, except not ginger.
  • Pumpkin is an autumn fruit in the Northern Hemisphere - is it an early summer fruit in Australia, or do you just keep them from the previous year?
  • MiliMili Shipmate
    I had to look up growing dates for butternut pumpkins - even though I have grown them myself before I couldn't remember what time of year :) Apparently they're grown in the summer in most parts of Australia, but in the dry season in the Northern Territory (which is during the Australian winter). And they can store for 3 to 6 months. I checked the local supermarket website and they have Australian grown butternut pumpkins in stock now. I'm not sure about other types of pumpkin as I don't usually buy other varieties. People here eat pumpkin all year round (I had a salad with pumpkin in it the other day) though they are most popular in soups in winter in the southern, colder states.
  • Mili wrote: »
    I'm Australian and we used to have pumpkin pie every Christmas - I think made from a recipe from an American cookbook, but made with fresh butternut pumpkin (which I think is technically a squash).
    Technically, it is a kind of squash; but then again, technically so is pumpkin. Here, at least, what's called butternut pumpkin in Australia and New Zealand is called butternut squash.
    I've read that a lot of people in the US use pumpkin pie filling from cans instead, but I'm not sure how common that is?
    Very common. My hunch is that most people who cook with pumpkin only use fresh pumpkin at Halloween, when they've carved their jack-o-lanterns.

  • Various:

    --People also buy pies--frozen, to bake; or already baked.

    --FYI: ISTM that butternut's taste is different from what we call pumpkin.

    --"What are Pie Pumpkins?" (Wise Geek) With pics.
  • MiliMili Shipmate
    Thanks Golden Key, I enjoyed reading about the pumpkins pies are traditionally made of. I tend to mostly eat butternut pumpkins (squash) as they are sweeter and a nicer flavor than other varieties here such as Queensland Blue pumpkins https://www.southernharvest.com.au/seed/pumpkin-queensland-blue and Kent Pumpkin (Japanese pumpkin) https://www.taste.com.au/healthy/articles/kent-pumpkin/NJBrwVGs

    But I have grown both these varieties and they taste good roasted, though I prefer butternuts for soup.
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