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Pumpkin gingersnap bars with gingered cream cheese topping

These seasonally perfect pumpkin bars pair a spicy gingersnap cookie crust with a layer of luscious baked pumpkin custard.

By The Gourmand Mom / November 13, 2013

Pipe a bit of cream cheese flavored with powdered sugar and a pinch of ginger on the top of your pumpkin gingersnap bars. Use extra gingersnap crumbs to garnish.

The Gourmand Mom

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Halloween blew my 2-year-old’s mind. Totally blew it. For weeks we’d been talking about how he would be Captain America on Halloween, while his brothers would be Hulk and Thor. Daddy would be Iron Man and Mommy would be Black Widow. We’d go door to door, collecting candy, which we would deposit in plastic pumpkins.

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The Gourmand Mom

Amy Deline is a stay at home mom to three little boys. She’s a former early childhood educator with a lifelong passion for home-cooking. Amy is the author and photographer behind The Gourmand Mom, a blog which celebrates food through simple and perfectly seasonal recipes, fit for a gourmet feast among friends or a relaxed family dinner.

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Though clearly flummoxed by this odd outline of what would happen on Halloween, he walked around telling anyone who would listen that he was going to “be Captain America.” (When he says it, it sounds a lot more like “Captain Murder.”)

As Halloween unfolded, every last bizarre detail came to fruition. He became Captain America. He was handed a plastic pumpkin. He said the magic words as he trotted from door to door. He got candy. Somehow, he managed to collect twice as much candy as either of his older brothers, having visited the same number of houses.

Be Captain America. Get Candy.

Meanwhile, Lucas, my 5-year-old Hulk, obsessed over the accuracy of every minute detail of his costume. My initial money-saving plan of picking up a fleece Hulk hat, t-shirt, and green face paint was met with a long list of concerns about muscles, green arms, purple ripped pants, and green legs.

I abandoned my frugal plan once the details overwhelmed me, in lieu of an official store-bought muscles-included hulk costume. Far from solving the problem, this purchase was quickly met by concerns over not having green feet or enough teeth in his partially toothless mouth. A hefty dose of gamma radiation may have saved us all a few headaches.

Learn from my experience, folks. If you stick three little boys in superhero costumes and call them The Avengers, you’d better expect some major chaos. Thor’s hammer was revoked almost instantly. Somehow, we made it through the day, by the skin of our superhero teeth. Next year, I may dress our whole clan as librarians, monks, and sloths.

Thankfully, the very next day, I had the pleasure of departing for a weekend of dairy education and wine and cheese tasting, hosted by the American Dairy Association and Dairy Council. Last year’s event was such an amazing experience. (You can read about it here.) I couldn’t wait to see what ADADC had in store for us this year.

This year, the event began at the beautiful Geneva on the Lake in Geneva, N.Y., which is located on the northwest side of Seneca Lake. Nestled in the New York Finger Lakes wine country, the manicured grounds of this elegant villa-inspired resort are absolutely stunning.

After a comfortable night’s sleep in a spacious jacuzzi suite, we awoke for a continental breakfast at the resort. From there, we departed for Cornell University, where we spent the day touring Cornell’s state-of-the-art dairy farm and dairy production plant. We met with experts in the fields of dairy farming, food science, and dairy production.

Going a step beyond the dairy farms, we learned about ice cream, cheese, and yogurtmaking and how Cornell University partners with local cheese artisans and other small businesses to help them develop and promote their dairy products.

Part of our "learning" required tasting a variety of ice creams, frozen yogurt, homemade yogurt, and cheese. I had no choice but to eat that delicious ice cream and a second helping of cheese. Twist my arm already!

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