Recipes from the Grapevine Cottage

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Thanksgiving Desserts

This one from reader Nancy G. — "Here is one of my favorites... although it can make for a HEAVY meal if one also has rolls and dressing."

Harvest Bread Pudding

18-20 slices white bread (20-ounce loaf)
6 eggs
1 LARGE can solid-pack pumpkin
3 1/2 cups milk (I use skim)
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon pumpkin-pie spice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup chopped dates
1 cup chopped pecans

Place bread on baking sheet, bake in preheated oven at 350 degrees for 5 - 8 minutes or until dry. Remove from oven, cool, cut or break into one-inch cubes (should measure about 8 cups) and set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, beat eggs, add pumpkin, milk , sugar, cinnamon, pumpkin-pie spice and salt; mix well. Stir in bread cubes, dates, and pecans Turn mixture into a buttered large crock pot. Cook on high for 1 hour and then on low for 3 hours. (Pudding will be like moist cake)

Vanilla Butter Sauce

Mix together 1 cup brown sugar and 2/3 cup cornstarch, then add 2 eggs and 4 cups skim milk. Heat on medium high, stirring constantly, until bubbling and desired thickness is reached. Stir in 1/2 cup butter and 2 teaspoons vanilla.

Serve over hot bread pudding. Refrigerate leftover bread pudding and sauce.

Persimmon Pudding

This from Joanne H. — "Here's a holiday dessert recipe for Persimmon Pudding. As I've been told, the persimmons found in this area are indigenous to Indiana and Kentucky. Other persimmons are Japanese, coming from the west coast. This is a sweet, moist dessert that becomes a holiday menu item tradition. Enjoy!"

1 cup persimmon pulp (found in finer grocery freezer sections/limited supply at the Country Market on 421 north of Zionsville)
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup butter - melted
1 egg
1 cup flour

Mix all ingredients to a thin batter; put in a 13-inch x 9-inch ungreased pan. Bake at 350 degrees approximately 45 to 60 minutes, or until toothpick pricked into the center has no batter on it. Pour cream sauce (recipe follows) over the pudding when it is removed from the oven. Let cool, refrigerate. Serve room temperature. Cut squares and spoon sauce over each piece for serving. Leftovers can be frozen.

Cream Sauce

1 cup sugar
1 cup milk
1 tablespoon flour
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

Mix ingredients in a saucepan. Heat over low heat until warm and blended and slightly thickened. Pour over warm pudding when it is brought from oven.

Pumpkin Pie

From Erma C. — (Linda's Mom) her traditional climax for Thanksgiving dinner....

2 beaten eggs
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
2 cups pumpkin
1 can Carnation evaporated milk
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 tablespoon flour
1 9-inch pastry shell — homemade or store bought

Beat eggs and sugar, add pumpkin and milk. Mix flour with salt and spices and add to pumpkin mixture. Mix welll and pour in to pastry shell and bake at 350 degrees for 50 minutes.