missjunebug has been thinking about growing pumpkins for a long time. A few years ago she tried a little plot down by her barn and had some healthy vines with beautiful yellow-gold blossoms thriving for the briefest while: gophers took out the roots and dashed all mjb’s hopes for homegrown pumpkins. Sigh.
This year she tried again with a clever internet idea (Thanks, Google! The question: Can I grow pumpkins in a pot?). The answer, yes! But despite the promising prodigious growth of leaves and vines and blossoms from her Home Depot 2″ pot pumpkin plant, missjunebug’s less-than-bumper crop was tiny x 2.
Mr.JB thinks most of the blossoms didn’t get fertilized. missjunebug thinks most of the blossoms weren’t ever open long enough to get fertilized due to the sometimes shady spot she placed the pot.
No matter. She will enjoy the two she grew this year and try again next year in a raised bed that’s gopher proof. Happy Fall! Happy Halloween!
missjunebug loves fall in SoCali! The fall of blazing orange pumpkins, cool, crisp weather (almost here!), clear dark-sky nights (rain by Thanksgiving), sweater warmth (cashmere, please!), and plenty of practice baking going on so that missjunebug can be ready for pie duty on Thanksgiving day. So how has missjunebug been preparing herself for all that’s fall?
First, she headed to her fave pumpkin patch at Underwood Farms 3370 Sunset Valley Road in Moorpark and picked some perfect pumpkins for her porch! (Whew! So alliterative!) Take a look:
missjunebug worked up a serious appetite and decided it was time to make one of her fave cookie recipes: Monster Cookies! So appropriate for the Halloween month of October. Are they scary? Not really. Just big and fun and delicious. The secret: No flour! Just some healthy oats, some (maybe not so healthy) sugars, peanut butter and voilà! Monster Cookies! Easy to make. Easy to eat. Easy to freeze for later!
Here’s are the recipes for a ton o’ cookies (the first one) and a half ton o’ cookies (the second one):
Beat the room temperature butter until nice and creamy. Add the sugars, vanilla, syrup, and baking soda. Add the eggs and beat in a few at a time. Next, blend in the peanut butter until the mixture is thick and semi-gooey! Throw in the oats, M&Ms, and chocolate chips and you are good to go. Scoop a large size cookie onto Silpat-lined baking sheets. Bake at 350 degrees for 13 to 18 minutes, depending upon how crispy you want the cookie to be. missjunebug likes hers super crispy, but it’s up to your taste!
Remember what missjunebug says: “De gustibus non est disputandum!” There’s no accounting for taste (so each to his/her own!)
Too many cookies? Yeah, this Full Recipe makes about 12-14 dozen depending upon the individual size of the cookie. That’s a lot o’ cookies!!!
Try this instead:
1 lb. brown sugar (= 2 cups)
2 cups granulated sugar
1/2 T. vanilla
1 T. Karo syrup
4 tsp. soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 lb. butter
1 1/2 lbs. peanut butter
9 cups Quaker Old-Fashioned Oatmeal
1/2 lb. M&Ms
6 oz. semi-sweet chocolate chips
Throw in a bowl and beat the heck out of the ingredients. (Not really. Just read above Full Recipe for how to combine the ingredients!)
These cookies should be stored in an airtight tin or container. You can also Ziploc them into freezer bags and save some for later!
mjbTip: Go out and have some fall fun! Welcome October indeed!
missjunebug loves this time of year except for the ridiculously summery temps and the fire-promoting Santa Ana winds. Where’s the sweater weather?? Coming soon according to the weather gurus.
Speaking of weather, she’s happy to see the Eastern Seaboard digging out from under Sandy Frankenstorm. Now that’s really scary. missjunebug will take a 40-second earthquake over a 3-day, 750-mile wide, 10-state collateral damage hurricane any day! Side benefit of Sandy F: an electioneering hiatus. She looks forward to November 3rd and the cessation of hyperbole, litote, polls, fearsome ads, rants, debates, and nonsensical posturing and parsing of all things political.
missjunebug’s heart goes out to all those travelers who are suffering the Nightmare Before Halloween: Flight Cancellations x thousands. Shape-shifting United is stepping up with easy flight changes and no charges. That Continental merger is having some sweet side effects for beleaguered travelers! missjunebug hopes all those stranded trick or treaters make it home in time to score some candy corn!
Here’s missjunebug’s Halloween Haiku, a tribute to the season in 5-7-5 syllables:
Dark night chills the spine
Ghostly shadows swirl within
Tingling trick or treat!
Happy Halloween, all you ghosties and ghoulies and things that go bump in the night!
missjunebug wants to assure you that her love of Brach’s Candy Corn–yes it has to be Brach’s–is unleashed only once a year on the First Day of Fall, give or take a day or two for just a few weeks. This seasonal favorite recalls all the best of autumn days giving way to the spooky nights of October and culminating in carved pumpkins and costumed revelry. missjunebug encourages you to think about your seasonal favs and to join her in her seasonal cheer: “All for Fall!”
missjunebug had some fun this weekend taking a few Halloween pictures that capture the spooky vibe of the season. Try not to get too scared. She’ll provide you with the Cornish benediction to cure all scariness that manifests this time of year:
From ghoulies and ghosties and long-legged beasties,
missjunebug hopes you celebrate Halloween wherever you are!
If you need a good scare, just look at your 401K again or check out the unemployment numbers!
If you’re staying in, check out Martin Scorsese‘s best horror film analyses and clips on www.thedailybeast.com and watch the one you find scariest.
If you’re going out trick or treating, have fun and be safe. With the right app, you can turn your iPhone into a flashlight! Cool or what?
As for missjunebug, she’ll be dressing up as a carefree 1920s flapper! You know…one of those multi-fringed, short-skirted, drinking-out-of-their-bejeweled-satin shoe Charleston-dancing girls. Those girls had a real good time…right before the CRASH! Now where did missjunebug put her feather boa?