Dessert/ Dinner/ Exercise/ Fitness/ Lunch

Pumpkin Galore (with recipes!)

Hi guys!

Happy Friday! It’s not so much a Friday for me, however, as I have to be at work at 7 tomorrow morning again! As hard as these looong days are, the up side is that every night I fall asleep around 9:30 and sleep AWESOME. I swear, my bed never feels so amazing! Getting in between those sheets is seriously the highlight of my day. Haha 😉

This morning I had planned to wake up a little earlier, at 5:50, so I could make oatmeal on the stove. I knew I would get enough sleep since I went to bed early last night (9:15!!! woot woot!) so I wasn’t worried. However……..I WOKE UP AT 5:05!!!! I mean FULL AWAKE! Like, one of those moments when I could have sworn my alarm was about to buzz any second and then I caved and looked at the clock and it read 5:05.

Of course I couldn’t fall back asleep knowing that my alarm was going to go off about 45 minutes later, so I just laid there for awhile before finally getting up, checking the blog & emails and making coffee and breakfast. I claim to be a morning person but woooahhhh that was early this morning!

I DID get my stove top oatmeal this morning so it was all worth it. 😉


This is the classic jenna combo of 1/2 cup oats, 1 cup silk light vanilla, some dried cherries, a banana and a spoonful of almond butter. It was thick, creamy and absolutely delicious and worth waking up early for.

And I packed the beeeest sammie for lunch……hummus & turkey on protein bread with spinach.


The combo of Sabra’s Spicy Hummus (LOVE this) and turkey was too die for. It made my morning complete. I’m a dork, I know. I also packed a yogurt and an apple and had the yogurt midmorning and the apple with my sandwich.


When I got home from work I snacked on banana bread:


And grapes:


I relaxed for about an hour while it stormed outside. When it cleared up, I headed outside for a 40 minute run. My shin was really sore but I was proud of myself because even though there were points I wanted to stop and turn around, I kept going and made it! I got these Tiger Balm Patches and I’ve been sticking them on my shins during the day at work and that helps a bit. I think I’m just plagued :(.

Betty and her husband are having friends over for dinner tonight and, of course, invited me to sit with them and wine & dine but I politely declined. After working/running days like this I’m honestly POOPED. I just want an early dinner and my bed. Asap. So, being the most amazing host mother she is, Betty made me my own dinner early before her guests arrived :). She baked salmon, which she marinated with a little evoo, soy sauce, garlic and key lime juice, and made me a buffalo mozzarella salad with light balsamic. I also had a slice of pumpkin bread (more on that later on!!).  



Before dinner, I sampled the appetizer she made for her guests—-prosciutto wrapped goat cheese with arugula and dried tart cherries. AHhhhh it was a-m-a-z-i-n-g!!!!!


I had seconds of the salmon and had another appetizer. I’m seriously going to remake this when I get to having dinner parties (ahh some day!). It was so easy and soooo delicious and gourmet. I also had a small glass of red wine with my meal. It was perfecto!


For dessert: raspberry tea and Almondina cookies 🙂


So, when I got in to work this morning I immediately set out on my usual early morning bread production-—pumpernickel rolls + cranberry bread for lunch service:


And then I made delicious, moist, heavenly pumpkin bread!!!



It’s from a very ooooold recipe but I swear its amazing. Here it is for your taste bud’s desire! Its the best I’ve had ever.

Spiced Pumpkin Bread

Makes 2 loaves

4 cups all purpose flour

3 cups sugar

2 tsp baking soda

1.5 tsp salt

1 tsp baking powder

1.5 tsp ground cinnamon

1 tsp ground nutmeg (freshly ground if possible)

1/2 tsp ground allspice

1 tsp  ground cloves

1/2 tsp ground ginger

4 eggs

1 cup canola oil

15 oz pumpkin (1 can)

2/3rds cup warm water

2 cups chopped, toasted pecans

EASY procedure!!! Just dump everything except the nuts into a mixing bowl, mix with a paddle attachment for about 2 minutes (or until everything has come together…do NOT over mix!!!!!), fold in the pecans and bake for 50 minutes at 350. Very yummy

**I’m not even attempting to “healthify” this recipe. There are tons of recipes which stand amazing just the way they are and the “healthier” versions just don’t do them justice. Everything in moderation, right?!

After the pumpkin bread, I made and baked some almond macaroons:


This might be my favorite cookie. I had one after lunch and it was too die for! 🙂

I also made some Mocha Truffle mix (I’ll scoop them tomorrow), threw together the Opera Cakes for tonight’s happy hour and made more pizza dough, which I tossed in the fridge for later use. Another very full day!

 And……………because of popular demand—–here’s the pumpkin whoopie pie recipe!


Pumpkin Whoopie Pies 


2 cups brown sugar

1 cup vegetable oil

1 1/2 cups pumpkin

2 eggs

3 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

4 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

3 tsp ground ginger

4 1/2 tsp ground cloves

1/2 tsp ground nutmeg (freshly ground is best)

1. Mix together the oil and the brown sugar until combined. Add the eggs and the pumpkin and stir well.

2. SIFT together (!!!) the dry ingredients including spices. Add the dry to the wet and stir until just combined. Do not overmix!

3. Bake at 350 for about 10 minutes or until slightly golden and puffy. Let cool completely.


First, make the marshmallow fluff (or just buy it already made….I won’t tell):

3 egg whites
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tbsp. vanilla
2 c. white corn syrup
2 c. powdered sugar, sifted

1. Beat the egg whites, salt, vanilla and corn syrup until light and fluffy—about 10 minutes. Add the powdered sugar and beat for another 10 until thick, light and fluffy. Set aside.

2. To about 1 cup of fluff (homemade from above or from the grocery store), add 8 oz soft butter, 2 tsp cinnamon and 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar.Beat on high until very fluffy and light. This is an approximation—-you will have to taste it and see what it needs…more sugar, more cinnamon….whatever. I like a lot of cinnamon in mine!

Sandwich the fluff between two cookies. Remember to breathe. 🙂

So there ya have it! Yall must be pumpkin’d out by now!!! I just looove baking with pumpkin and will continue testing new recipes with it all holiday season so be forewarned! The above whoopie pie recipe is another one of those “just enjoy it and don’t try to make it healthy” recipes. Seriously. Life is way too short to eat carrots and canned tuna all the timeI know yall love healthy recipes so you can try to adjust to whatever you like but just know that if it turns out crappy, I have nothing to do with it! I don’t recommend any alterations.

And now, on that note, I am going to go read. I AM READING THE BEST BOOK!!!!!!!!!  I could not put it down last night. Its two stories intertwined—–the first is told in the eyes of this 10 year old girl being taken with her family to Auschwitz. Right when the secret police come to their house to arrest them, she locks her 3 year old brother in the kitchen cabinet telling him she will be back later for him and he will be safer there. Only she has the key to the secret cabinet. The other story is told from the perspective of an American journalist living in Paris doing a story, in present times, about what happened that day when Paris Jews were taken from their home and arrested. I’m a little less than halfway but I can’t put it down! I do have sort of a fascination with Holocaust literature though, as depressing as that may be. I wrote my 60 page senior thesis on adolescent Holocaust literature and its influence on modern day teens.  

I gotta go read!

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  • Best Soy Latte
    October 10, 2008 at 11:40 pm

    I got up at five this morning too!! it’s a bit *too* early, even for morning people, I agree, heh. but it’s kinda fun when you have energy 🙂

    pumpkin bread looks a-MAZing. and thanks for the whoopie recipe – they have been looking soo tempting!!

    that book sounds really interesting. I’m a big reader too and I totally identified with the “spending money I don’t have on books” that you wrote in a past entry. I am addicted to barnes & noble!

    great job on the 40 minute run. enjoy your bed tonight – I love that feeling of tiredness after a busy day!

  • BethT
    October 11, 2008 at 12:13 am

    I totally agree with you on the moderation thing. Life is too short to ALWAYS bake low fat!!! Butter and real sugar are fine (and fun!) in moderation.

  • Beth
    October 11, 2008 at 12:15 am

    In the Pumpkin Whoopie Pies do you use pumpkin puree? Those sound delicious! I can’t wait to make them.

  • jenna
    October 11, 2008 at 12:16 am

    Yes mam! We use Libby’s Pumpkin Puree at work and it’s fab 🙂

  • ms
    October 11, 2008 at 12:50 am

    Coming to your blog gives me a two for one deal!! I get all these amazing recipes AND great books to read. Where do you get the titles of your books that you read, because I am always unable to put down a book I start reading based on your recommendation. Oh, and I also get inspired to get working out ~ so that’s three for one!!

    I’m making Betty’s quiche tomorrow night and looking forward to it. I think we may make the pumpkin bread this weekend, since we’ve almost finished up the batch of pumpkin cookies I made a few days ago. Nothing beats cooking with pumpkin this time of year…

  • michelle
    October 11, 2008 at 12:58 am

    Oh wow i was so hoping you would post the recipe for the pumpkin whoopie pies!! I am psyched now!!! Thanks Jenna!!!

  • VeggieGirl
    October 11, 2008 at 1:01 am

    Stove-top oats + spicy hummus + banana bread + apple & grapes + pumpernickel rolls + cranberry bread + pumpkin bread & whoopie pies + almond macaroons = holy yum!!!!

    Enjoy the book; and eek, good luck with your early-morning workday tomorrow!!

  • coco
    October 11, 2008 at 1:24 am

    Hi Jenna, I can understand your frustration/angry/surprise when you wake up earlier than you planned. It happens to me all the time. Sometimes i wake up at 4 or even 3.30am and can’t go back to sleep. So i get up, have a glass of soy milk, some cookies and read a magazine before go back to sleep. It always works. It’s not the best thing in the world, but at least I can get 7-8 hours of sleep.
    And i’m so agree with you that stove made oatmeal is much better!

  • Fancy
    October 11, 2008 at 1:50 am

    I posted this on Kath’s blog a few days ago….but only got 1 response and I’m hoping for some advice. I don’t run, but I do for LONG walks (sometimes 4 hours at a time). There are things I like to have with me…chapstick, keys, etc. but I have no idea where to put them! I’ve been using a wristlet, but it’s a pain to carry and have swinging around. What do you all use to carry things around when you go running/walking?

    Thank you all so much for your advice! Happy Friday!

  • Mel
    October 11, 2008 at 1:54 am

    Yay! Thank you for posting your pumpkin whoopie pie recipe! I wanted to bake something fall-like this weekend, and this is perfect!

  • Megan
    October 11, 2008 at 2:09 am

    Sounds like an interesting book. I have always been interested in the Holocaust and took a class on it in college.

    Thank you so much for sharing the pumpkin recipes! Both look amazing!

  • erica
    October 11, 2008 at 2:28 am

    we definitely have the same outlook regarding desserts.. enjoy everything and anything within reason! love it.

    everything looks fabulous as always.. i wish i could eat everything off the screen!

  • Janine
    October 11, 2008 at 3:19 am

    What is the name of that book? It sounds so fascinating!

  • Julz
    October 11, 2008 at 3:25 am

    MACAROONS ARE MY FAVORITE DESSERT OF ALL FREAKING TIME. Last night at Break the Fast dinner (for Yom Kippur) my Cousin brought the Whole Foods Mini Macaroons… I had 1 and melted into my couch with my big mug of chamomile tea and was in heaven. HEAVEN. Mmmm!

    *Sigh, ohhh the simple divinity of a Coconut Macarron 😉 *Swoooon

  • emily
    October 11, 2008 at 4:58 am

    Jenna – thanks for the book rec, that looks like something I would love! I know what you mean about Holocaust literature; one side of my family is Jewish, but it’s not really what I grew up with, but the Holocaust Lit class I took junior year was seriously my favorite college course. Have you read “All But My Life” by Gerda Klein? I would say it’s one of my all time favorite books (from any genre). The prof of my class (who was amazing, I actually took every class he taught) choose some really great titles, let me know if you want a recommendation.

  • Beadie
    October 11, 2008 at 11:18 am

    Your host mom sounds like a wonderful cook. You two would make one mean combo, a fab baker and a fab cook. Not to say that you aren’t a fab cook, but you know what I mean 🙂

  • Foodie (Fab and Delicious Food)
    October 11, 2008 at 1:13 pm

    That book sounds fascinating. Thanks for the recommendation!

  • Annie
    October 11, 2008 at 1:23 pm

    Hey girl! This might sound kind of obvious, and I haven’t been reading your blog for very long so you might have already tried this, but maybe your shins hurt because of your shoes? I used to always get really bad shin splints when I ran and was so upset and frustrated with the pain. Then I went to this special runner’s store where they have people to pick out a running shoe for specifically for you based on your arches, and the way you put weight on your feet, and the way you walk. They suggested a pair of Asics (Gel Cumulus 9 I think they’re called) for me. I have had those shoes for about 5 months now, and I have never had any shin pain! It’s amazing!

  • Meredith
    October 11, 2008 at 1:33 pm

    That book looks great!! I’ve been really good lately about getting my books from the library rather than buying them, but when I requested this book from my library’s website it said that there are 34 people in front of me waiting for it! I think I might have to give in and hit up the bookstore 🙂

  • Bridget
    October 11, 2008 at 3:28 pm

    Betty sounds like the best host mother ever! Everytime you post a meal that she’s made, I want to live with her too.

  • Beth
    October 11, 2008 at 4:12 pm

    Sorry…Another question. How many cookies does this recipe make? Have a great weekend!

  • Shelby
    October 11, 2008 at 5:20 pm

    All I can say is YUM! I love the pumpkin bread and pies…they look heavenly! =)

  • Runjen
    October 11, 2008 at 6:17 pm

    I put my keys and chapstick in my little pocket in my running shorts. If I am doing a super long run, I will hide a bottle of water at the halfway mark before my run. If worse comes to worst, I will carry a bottle and unload it when I’m done. I have never had much luck with water belts b/c I feel too weighed down and really don’t like to carry anything while running, if I don’t have to. Good luck!

    Jenna, I can not WAIT to make those pumpkin whoopie pies!!!! I might have to make them tonight. YUM! Thanks so much for posting that!

  • Grounded Fitness
    October 11, 2008 at 6:18 pm

    well, your blog officially shows how freakin hard it must be to be a chef. I imaged baking and eating all day- but looks like its more physically demanding that i thought! hope you find a permanent fix for the shins!

    Kelly Turner

  • bobbi
    October 11, 2008 at 7:00 pm

    love all the food! I too have a wierd obsession with Holocost literature, I was History major and this was one of my favorite parts. I dont know why I like that stuff:)

  • Fancy
    October 11, 2008 at 8:16 pm

    Thank you so much for your advice! 🙂

  • jenna
    October 11, 2008 at 8:27 pm


    I’m sorry, I don’t know!!!! I never counted. My fault. Maybe 18 complete whoopie pies? 36 cookies? Depends on the size of the cookies.


    🙁 I did go to the special running store and had my feet/stride analyzed. Turns out for the past 3 years I have been running in horrible shoes. I got some new shoes + inserts and then I also saw an othopaedist and got inserts for ALL my shoes to correct my severe overpronation. This was about a month and a half ago. Thanks for your suggestion though!


    Sarah’s Key.

  • Lindsay
    October 11, 2008 at 10:06 pm

    Alright guys, question for any experts. I went to a personal training session today. My body fat was 9%. Thats very lean right? Anyway, my PT was trying to tell my i should get it down to 5-6% before i do the marathon i’m training for, she said i would be faster. I’m so confused because i thought 9% was very low and 5-6% would not be healthy? Am I wrong, should i am for that?

  • Pumpkin
    October 13, 2008 at 8:50 pm

    Yay! I can’t wait to make these!