How our little ones delight in their first encounter with pumpkins! And even as we grow older, we love shopping for these abundant symbols of the season to decorate our homes. But a pumpkin is more than a jack-o-lantern, as charming as it may be. Some of our yummiest food this time of year is pumpkin based–and the love affair continues as we select this rich, rustic color for our homes. Here, an homage to the pumpkin in its time of plenty:
- Pumpkin, the color: It’s a no-no to refer to the luscious, sophisticated shade of pumpkin as orange, especially at this time of year. Note what a great accent color it is to set off rich wood tones, as in this setting with the Aura armoire from Opus Designs by Hooker Furniture. Hip and sophisticated, pumpkin is designed to travel through the teens and on to adulthood.
Mixing pumpkin with a complementary color like the red of autumn leaves is a stunning combination, as in this Queen Anne chair, the Annabelle from Sam Moore. With its tight seat and channel back, a special piece like this can bring a note of spice to any room.
A big splash of pumpkin–painting a wall or even an entire room–is a dramatic move. When it becomes the dominant color, look for navy and white to be comfortable companions. Shiny white woodwork with a blue painted door or shutters will create a surefire wow.
- Pumpkins on our table: The sight of a stack of pumpkin pancakes with a stream of maple syrup and a dollop of butter on your breakfast table will thrill everyone in the family. You can order a fabulous pumpkin pancake mix from Stonewall Kitchen.
This type of table creates a warm, convivial feeling for informal meals. At teatime, you might also enjoy Stonewall’s pumpkin custard pie recipe.
At our house, my husband’s pumpkin apple cake is a fall favorite. The recipe below was first shared by Tate’s Bake Shop in their recipe of the month newsletter. The cake has gone to many a potluck dinner where a harvest table like Sanctuary’s refectory table in ebony and drift takes center stage. Centerpiece? Just a wonderful array of pumpkins in a variety of sizes on a bed of autumn leaves.
- Sum: Pumpkins delight us in many ways. The fascination begins in childhood and we are never too old to become kids again when fields are strewn with this delightful sight of autumn. Enjoy the color, the flavor, and the excitement of the season!
LINDY’S PUMPKIN APPLE CAKE (with thanks to Tate’s Bake Shop)
1/2 cup salted butter
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups diced apples–(local apples used in this cake)
1 cup canned pumpkin
1/2 cup walnuts
2 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon cloves
1/4 teaspoon ginger
(This cake made with Hudson Valley Spice from NY Apple and Pumpkin Pie, 400 Market Industrial Park, Wappingers Falls, NY 12590)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 9-inch bundt or angel food cake pan. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and spices and set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter. Beat in sugars.
Add eggs, one at a time. Scrape down bowl. Add vanilla. Stir in apples, pumpkin, and walnuts. Scrape down the bowl and stir again. Stir in dry ingredients. Mix till combined.
Spoon mixture into prepared pan.
Bake for 55 minutes to one hour.
Cool in pan for 15 minutes.
Turn cake over onto a wire rack to finish cooling.