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Pumpkin Obsessed

Pumpkin Spice. Everything Nice.

Pumpkin Spice Cookies

Available at: Subway
Cost: $1 for 3, or two come with your combo meal

Notes: Subway, as a restaurant, is a solid “just okay.” I have never finished one of their sandwiches and thought to myself, “That was AWESOME.” And yet, I find myself eating there on a fairly regular basis. There is one across the street from my office, and if I’m in a hurry and need to grab some lunch, well… at least I know I’m getting some vegetables.

But you know what is actually good at Subway? The cookies. The white chocolate macadamia nut cookies are my favorite. Soft, buttery, big chunks of chocolate and nuts. The raspberry cheesecake cookies are also quite good.

You can imagine, then my excitement when I saw Pumpkin Spice cookies at Subway. I tore through my sandwich with considerably more enthusiasm than it deserved, so I could get to my dessert.

Cue sad music, because they were just okay. The cookies had a nice molasses flavor, plus all of the usual pumpkin spices I love. But  the texture was unimpressive. They weren’t soft and chewy like I’d been hoping (and like they looked like they would be). They also weren’t crispy, just an in-between that I don’t think was deliberate. I wonder if they were overcooked and could have been better. I’ll give them another shot, because let’s be honest – I probably have a blah sandwich somewhere in my near future. Until then…

Rating: 

Special K Pumpkin Spice Pastry Crisps

Available At: A grocery store near you
Cost: About $3 for a box

Notes: What we have here is a thin little cookie/pastry/cereal bar with pumpkin filling and a drizzle of icing. And it’s Special K, so pretty low calories.

How are they? I guess they’re fine. Like most Special K low calorie snacks, they will keep your stomach from growling loudly and embarrassingly during meetings (that’s not just me, is it?). That’s a good thing. But never, ever, are you going to say, “You know what sounds awesome?” and answer yourself with a Special K bar.

They’re like a smaller, less flavorful version of Pop Tarts. I kept wanting to stick them in the toaster. Even more so, I kept wishing I had an actual Pop Tart.

Rating: 

Pumpkin Pasta with Sausage and Apples

Available At: I made it, using this recipe.
Cost: Pretty reasonable.

Notes: So, what we’ve got here is pasta, a creamy pumpkin sauce, sausage (I used sweet Italian sausage) and granny smith apples.

If that doesn’t say FALL, then I don’t know what does.

I liked this a lot. I liked it even more when I added more nutmeg to it. And the grated Parmesan cheese makes it. I’d recommend using bonafideParmesan cheese, that comes in a little tub and not the stuff in the green can, so that it has some actual flavor to it. It’s more expensive, but really, I can see why. Worth it.

This recipe makes a humongous vat of pasta, so I ate it for my lunches for a week, plus I brought a container of it over to Shawn’s house so he could have it for dinner. I am pretty sure he didn’t like it, because he didn’t eat much, and that man can eat some pasta. But I’m not sweating it, because hey, even if he didn’t like it, surely he appreciates that I brought him dinner.

Rating:  -1/2

Yoplait Light Pumpkin Pie Yogurt

Available At: A grocery store near you
Cost: Less than a dollar

Notes: People have asked me if I like anything that’s pumpkin. Probably they are being snarky, but I will nevertheless answer sincerely: no.

It is true that if something is pumpkin-flavored, there is a stronger chance that I will like it than something that is not (see Pumpkin Spice Cheerios), but it’s still no guarantee.

Take this yogurt, for example. I was psyched to see a pumpkin yogurt I hadn’t tried yet, but as soon as I saw on the label that it was “light,” I was pretty sure I wouldn’t like it. Obviously, I bought it and ate it anyway, because I am devoted to you all.

I took a bite, and it was pretty good for about 4 seconds. Then all I got was the flavor of artificial sweeteners. This is true of all light yogurts, in my opinion. So, really, what I got was pumpkin spice Nutrisweet (or whatever artifical sweetener Yoplait is using these days). In my opinion, yogurt consumption should be a big YOLO and you should go for actual fat and sugar.

Rating: 

Steeped Tea, various

Available At: Available from a Steeped Tea consultant. My friend Heather hooked me up with some samples, in exchange for my unbiased review.

Cost: In my case, one unbiased review

Notes: Heather sent me three samples of pumpkin teas, because she’s awesome and generous that way (and I think also genuinely interested in what I’d think).

First, I tried the Pumpkin Spice Latte. To be clear, this was a tea latte, not espresso. So, picture a pretty strong tea, mixed with hot milk. This was fan-freaking tastic. Smelled amazing, tasted just as good. It was excellent on a rainy day with a book and my cat assistants.

Next up was the Pumpkin Pie Rooibos tea. This one, to me, just tasted like a very good rooibos tea, but I didn’t get any pumpkin pie flavor to it. Good, but not pumpkin-y.

Finally, I had a mug of Chocolate Pumpkin Chai. It smelled amazing, and while it was good, it wasn’t nearly as good as the Pumpkin Spice Latte.

Ratings: Latte –  Rooibos –  (as a pumpkin tea; as tea, much higher) Chai –  – 1/2

Whitey’s Pumpkin Latte Shake

Available at: Whitey’s
Cost: $4-ish dollars

Notes: I think the words “visionary” and “genius” would aptly describe my decision to have my pumpkin shake made with Cup O’ Joe ice cream, thus creating the Pumpkin Latte Shake.

Is it good?

My knees may have buckled while eating it.

Rating: 

Pumpkin Pie Pop Tarts

Available At: I found mine at Wal-Mart
Cost: About $3 for a big box

Notes: I wish I had a prettier picture to show, with at least the Pop Tarts intact, but the sad fact is that this particular pair was broken in the box. But don’t worry – I ate them anyway.

What you have here is your basic frosted Pop Tart, with sprinkles in vaguely autumnal hues. The filling is pumpkin-y with cinnamon. And they’re good! Equally good toasted or raw. I’m not doing flips about them, but they’re solid.

Rating: 

Talenti Pumpkin Pie Gelato

Available At: I found it at Jewel
Cost: $4

Notes: I was on my way out of the grocery store with a pint of coffee/almond ice cream in my hand when I saw an entire pumpkin ice cream display on an end cap. Decisions were made and the coffee/almond ice cream was quickly abandoned in favor of this gelato.

OMG, you guys.

This stuff tastes exactly like pumpkin pie. Really good pumpkin pie, where they didn’t wuss out on the nutmeg. But better, because it is frozen and creamy. Also, there are swirls of some kind of brown sugar thing throughout this. It was amazing, and I’m tempted to hoard it so I can eat it year round.

Rating: 

Turkey with White Bean Pumpkin Chili

Available At: Made it using this recipe
Cost: Again, chili is cheap.

Notes: This is my third attempt at pumpkin chili. I’ve done this one and this one. In both cases, I liked the chili, but didn’t find it remotely pumpkin-y.

This is my first attempt at a pumpkin-ized white chili. I had high hopes – maybe it was the wrong tomato flavor that was drowning out the pumpkin.

Nope.

Once again, this is good chili, and I’m going to enjoy eating it for lunch this week. But if I left out the pumpkin, I don’t think it would taste any different.

Rating: 🎃🎃

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