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Pumpkin Spice And Everything Nice

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Posted: Friday, November 8, 2019 3:41 pm

What comes to mind when you think of Halloween, Thanksgiving and fall food?

If your answer is pumpkin you are in the majority. Pumpkin pie is a very traditional fall dessert and in recent years pumpkin has become prominent during this time of year in desserts and drinks.

Had a pumpkin spice latte recently? How about a chocolate chip pumpkin cookie? If you live in Imperial Beach and feel like eating pumpkin inspired drinks and desserts there are a number of eateries that can satisfy you.

But first a little bit of history on this well-loved fruit. It is believed that pumpkins originated in North America and seeds of similar plants have been discovered in Mexico dating back to 7000 to 5500 B.C. The word pumpkin comes from Greek and means large melon which belongs to the gourd family and include cantaloupe, watermelons, zucchini and honeydew melons.

Pumpkins were first used as a side dish diced pumpkins with butter and spices in the 1670s. By the 1800s sweetened pumpkins dishes for the holidays were common. Pumpkins have a highly nutritional value with Vitamin A, fiber, niacin, and the antioxidant lutein.

At the Red House Kitchen, baker Lupe Moreno makes delicious pumpkin treats during this time of year. Lil’ Lupe’s Pumpkin Sandwich cookies feature chocolate chips and pumpkin seeds with cream cheese frosting. There is a Pumpkin Spice Cake with cream cheese frosting and cinnamon sprinkle. Both of these desserts were scrumptious. The cake was moist, and the cream cheese frosting was a nice pairing, while the sandwich cookies were perfect with their crunchiness and frosting in between. Red House Kitchen also serves a Pumpkin Spice scone with cinnamon glaze. If you feel like having a pumpkin drink , try their Pumpkin Spice Latte.

If you want something to drink on the other side of town head to Katy’s Café for a Pumpkin Pie Cream latte which can be served with a couple of shots of espresso, hot steamy milk and topped with whipped cream. Owner Katy Fallon prefers this drink hot but it can also be served cold. Decaf choice is also available. Another option is Pumpkin Pie Chai which also comes in sugar free.

Just down the street Babycakes has a flavorful and large Pumpkin Chocolate Chip cookie topped with icing or you can pick a slice of the Pumpkin Tart or Pumpkin Cheesecake. Each slice beautifully decorated with a small pumpkin. Pumpkin cupcakes are also available with cream cheese frosting.

Starbucks serves a Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew which when you drink it feels like you are drinking a dessert. It can be hot or cold and topped with a vanilla sweet cream. The vanilla foam and the taste of the coffee are a delightful mix. Another choice is Pumpkin Spice Latte. Barista J.J. Juarez said the two pumpkin drinks are the most popular in the store right now.

If you happen to be in Coronado here are a few places where you can find pumpkin based treats:

Café Madrid offers the most pumpkin inspired drinks with Pumpkin Spice Latte, Pumpkin Chai Tea Latte and White Chocolate Pumpkin Mocha. If on the way you feel like eating a muffin, The Henry offers pumpkin muffins as well as a gluten free choice. Pumpkin Latte and Pumpkin Spice Chai are also available.

Across the street at Café 1134 employee Joe Nolan said the pumpkin craze starts in early October when customers start asking for pumpkin flavored foods and drinks. The café offers regular pumpkin muffins and gluten free choice made by Coronado based business Gluten Free Pantry.

If you just feel like a slice of traditional Pumpkin Pie head over to Clayton’s Coffee Shop or try a Pumpkin Chai muffin. Clayton’s really puts you in the mood for fall. The diner is filled with orange bows, jars with orange roses and small pumpkins at every table.

Villa Nueva Bakery Café sells their typical, very large pumpkin muffins and a pumpkin loaf already wrapped ready to be purchased and taken home. Pumpkin lattes are also available at the café.

In the mood for more than just pastry? Tartine has anything you can possibly want. First of all the Pumpkin Spice Latte at Tartine is made with real pumpkin, cream and spices and prepared by the baker. Under the glass domes you can find Spiced Pumpkin teacakes wrapped in orange paper or opt for a slice of Pumpkin Loaf. Pumpkin Teacakes are very popular through Thanksgiving said Owner/Head Pastry Chef Barbara Massey. Some customers head to the eatery everyday to buy them. If you want to have pumpkin inspired cake this is the place. There is a Pumpkin Chocolate Truffle Cake, a brand new creation by Massey. Tartine usually carries a truffle cake made with champagne or espresso but recently Massey created one with pumpkin which has a creamy texture and is a variation to the classic. This cake is one of the featured ones for Thanksgiving and can be ordered for the upcoming holiday. “This cake is flowerless and great for those with gluten allergy and it’s a nice alternative to apple or pecan and for those who want rich chocolate,” she said. Her idea was to create something you can’t make at home.

Another tempting dessert is the Pumpkin Cheesecake offered in single or shareable serving. Apart from its beautiful appearance it has a soufflé-like texture. This dessert can also be ordered for Thanksgiving in a 6 in or 8 in. size. Yet another of Massey’s creations is the Pumpkin Silk Tart. “It’s the ultimate pumpkin pie. It’s 2 1/2 inches tall and very creamy,” she explained. The bakery rotates its offerings and the pumpkin loaf is one of those desserts available throughout the year, as are the pumpkin scones.

The newly opened old world style Clayton’s Bakery & Bistro offers pumpkin muffins topped with pumpkin seeds which are super moist and delicious. Also try the pumpkin scones with hidden chocolate chips and granulated sugar on top which are delightful. If you just want to have cookie the Pumpkin Chai Cookie is an excellent choice. The cookie has a Chai glaze and is very popular right now according to one of the managers, Jacey Ecker. Another fall inspired dessert available at the bakery is the Pumpkin Cheesecake with Oreo crust.

This time of year where everywhere you turn everything is decorated in orange, stop and enjoy the flavors of the season by having something delicious that features pumpkin.

This is a pumpkin inspired poem written circa 1633

“For pottage and puddings and custards and pie

Our pumpkins and parsnips are common supplies,

We have pumpkins at morning and pumpkins at noon,

It if were not for pumpkins we should be undoon.”

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