Bismillah ir-Rahman ir-Rahim....

The Mujahada in Prada

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

~The Prophet Liked Pumpkin~

Anas b. Malik reported: A tailor invited Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) to a meal which he had prepared. Anas b. Malik said: I went along with Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) to that feast. He presented to Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) barley bread and soup containing pumpkin, and sliced pieces of meat. Anas said: I saw Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) going after the pumpkin round the dish, so I have always liked the pumpkin since that day.

Sahih Muslim ,Book 023, Number 5067

aSalaam uAlaikum and Good Morning My Stylish Sisters!

Ever since I was little, one of my favorite things about this time of year were all of the different flavors that no one seemed to cook any other time.  Pumpkin, cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger are used in abundance to make delicious cookies, pies, cakes and soups.  In fact, I believe I was munching away on a piece of pumpkin pie last time I posted on here.  :)

My most recent issue of 'Better Homes and Gardens' magazine (which I loooove) has a whole spread about the hottest holiday dessert this year: Trifles.  Yes, trifles!  Gone are the days that they are reserved for stuffy, royal luncheons and formal holiday dinners.  They are delicious, beautiful, and very easy to make; which definitely appeals to me.

When making a dessert that I am presenting to someone else, or serving to a large group of people I feel that presentation MUST be taken into consideration when choosing a recipe.  That's why I thought I would share a recent recipe that I whipped up last time I was baking pies, because I'm pretty sure if you ladies are pumpkin lovers like I am, that you will find it just as drool worthy as I do.

I came upon this recipe totally by mistake.  As any baker knows, there tends to be a sizeable amount of the pumpkin filling left over after filling the pie crusts when using canned pumpkin paste ( I recommend Libby's).  So, this year, instead of pouring the leftovers down the drain, I poured them into a cupcake pan, sprinkled the tops with a bit of cinnamon sugar and nutmeg, and baked it right alongside the pans.  (be sure to use heavy duty cupcake liners, because the filling is quite runny before baking)

Here's how they looked once I pulled them out:

They look yummy, already, don't they?  The cinnamon sugar and nutmeg that I sprinkled on top made a nice little crispy crust.  Don't worry if your pumpkin cupcakes have a little hole in each one, that is caused by the excess moisture in the filling which is usually drawn into the crust when baking a pie.

Here's a closeup:

  Now, in a trifle there are at least three parts: A fruity part, A bread-y part, A creamy part.  So, at this point you need to decide for yourself what you would like to do for your bread-y part.  I would suggest either whipping up a bit of extra pie crust and baking it separately, or if you don't have time to bake your own pie crust you can just buy one extra pre-made pie crust.  Also, I would personally recommend making your own whipped cream, so that you can add a flavor to it like almond or vanilla, but there is no shame in buying Cool Whip or some other type of whipped cream instead.

Now that you have your three parts, you are ready to assemble.  Because we are using small pumpkin cupcakes, this trifle will look best if served in individual serving glasses.  You can use wine or champagne glasses for a more formal look, or if you are keeping it more casual, small glass bowls work well too.  Just make sure that whatever you use is see-through glass so that you can enjoy the beautiful aesthetics of your delicious trifle.

Start layering your three ingredients, starting with a small amount of crumbled crust on the bottom, followed by the pumpkin filling, then some whipped cream.  Continue layering until you've made as many layers as you want, making sure you finish with whipped cream on top.  Throw a small sprig of mint on top, or garnish with a sprinkle of nutmeg and cinnamon and you're finished.  It looks beautiful, and people will think you spent hours on it (which always helps to gain points with the in-laws, your boss at work, or your hubby!)

I wish I could show you a finished picture of the trifles that I made, but unfortunately they were all eaten before I had a chance to take pictures.  So, here are a couple of pictures of other trifles so you can get an idea of the beauty that a good trifle holds:

So, there you have it, my amazing Muslimahs.  Although pumpkin pies, and fancy trifles are traditionally served at fancy holiday parties around this time of year, you don't HAVE to celebrate Christmas or Thanksgiving to enjoy these decadent desserts. 

Even our Prophet saws liked pumpkin...and served in one of these desserts, I'm pretty sure you will too.

Ma'Salaama and Happy Baking!

Fashionably Yours,
The (you can call me Martha Stewart!) Mujahada in Prada