Hoping everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving yesterday! I’m super excited that we’ve now officially kicked off the holiday season – aka the BEST time of year!
I drove home to western Mass from Boston on Wednesday afternoon (after a Corepower Yoga Sculpt class – staying strong and getting those classes in 💪🏻) and spent Thanksgiving with my immediate and some extended family. Realized that as empowered and motivated as I’ve been about this health kick I’m on, I had to give myself the day yesterday (and maybe the night before that while baking lol) to relax a bit on the health kick and enjoy the food and time with family and friends.
My nana was from Italy and she passed away a couple of years ago now. As an Italian, she never did Thanksgiving (or Christmas) without a lasagna. SO that’s why you see lasagna on the table. Definitely not the most traditional thing to see on a Thanksgiving table.
I woke up early yesterday to get to hot yoga at my western Mass favorite The Yoga Shop. It was really nice to start the day out with yoga. While yoga is definitely a workout it’s also great for the mind so it was awesome to be able to get to class yesterday. I also saw a couple people I knew including my old manager from when I used to work at Banana Republic who I adore. It was definitely a great way to start Thanksgiving morning.
It was a unique year with some new faces and new traditions but there’s something nice and comforting about being around people and enjoying a meal (and some wine) with each other. I’m excited to be starting new traditions. CJ spent it with his family this year so it was a bit weird being apart for the holiday but we were able to chat on FaceTime a couple times so it all worked out. I’m happy he was able to spend time with his family and friends in Connecticut.
On another note…
I love baking – it’s literally my all time favorite. So I decided to try a recipe I found online for Gluten Free Pumpkin cake & Maple Mascarpone frosting to bring to my mom’s. I had a piece and (and also a piece of chocolate cream pie ugh). However, thought I’d share the recipe for the pumpkin cake & frosting below! I thought it came out delicious and got some compliments on it so wanted to keep pushing this recipe out there and share below 🙂 (Originally found here).
For the cake:
1 cup (125 grams) 1-1 gluten free all purpose baking flour (I found at Whole Foods!)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 large eggs, room temperature
1 cup (228 grams) Whole Foods organic canned pumpkin puree
1 cup (200 grams) brown sugar
1/2 cup (120ml) olive oil
For the mascarpone whipped cream frosting:
Now, THIS was amazing. Be careful and try not to taste beforehand or else you may find yourself eating way more than a taste (oops!).
8 ounces (225 grams) mascarpone cheese (also found at WF)
1/3 cup (80ml) heavy cream
1/4 cup (60ml) maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extracta
Dash of salt
For the cake:
Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C) and line an 8″ x 8″ (20cm x 20cm) pan with parchment paper or spray with baking spray. In a medium mixing bowl, stir together the dry ingredients (flour through nutmeg) .In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the remaining cake ingredients (eggs through oil).Add the dry mix to the wet and stir just until combined. Do not overmix!Pour into the prepared pan. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.Let cool completely before frosting.
For the frosting:
In a large mixing bowl using an electric hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with the whip attachment, beat the mascarpone and whipping cream until fluffy, about 1-2 minutes. Fold in the maple syrup, vanilla and salt.Spread onto the cooled cake. Cover and refrigerate any leftovers for up to 4 days.
The original recipe calls for maple candied walnuts. I skipped this step but it was still very delicious without!
I definitely love the food the most about Thanksgiving, I’m not going to lie. But what I also love is that it’s different than any other holiday in that it is built around the idea of being grateful for the things and people in our lives and to me that is so special.
This year I’m so thankful for good health and the opportunity to work on such amazing work and learn from a team of phenomenal people. I’m grateful for my mom and her unconditional love and support. I’m grateful for my siblings even though they’re still in weird phases but I’ve gotten a few more words out of them this time home than others. I’m also very grateful for CJ and for him being so gracious to move to Boston with me and for being so supportive of everything I do.
Happy holidays everyone! (SO stoked I can say that for the next month!!)