Fall is one of my favorite times of year, since it is pumpkin season! I enjoy both sweet and savory pumpkin dishes and one of my favorite things to bake and share is pumpkin cupcakes! I like to serve these with ginger frosting, which has a delightful kick to it. I make all of my pumpkin dishes with a pumpkin that I select myself from wither a patch or the grocery store. I am staunchly against using canned pumpkin, although I place it on the recipe below. The reason is, besides being an elitist, that canned pumpkin is largely not pumpkin at all, but squash. It has been a secret of canners, but since pumpkin can be stringy, they will mix it with squash. I find this beneath me, and will go through the trouble of cutting, gutting, boiling and mashing my own pumpkin. Actually, I get my husband to do the tedious parts, and afterward I take the boiled pumpkin flesh in the blender with a little bit of water to smooth it out into a fine puree. This takes time, but is well worth the effort. I highly recommend the use of sugar pie pumpkins or ghost pumpkins, as they are fleshy and sweet to the taste. Having a fresh pumpkin for the feasting in a form is an autumn delicacy!

Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes
1 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
¾ cup brown sugar
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
¼ teaspoon clove
1 teaspoon ginger
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/3 cup oil
¾ cup milk
½ cup pureed pumpkin flesh or half cup of canned pumpkin
1 egg

1. Set over temperature at 350 degrees. Place baking wrappers in the muffin pan.
2. Mix the dry ingredients, then add spices and stir.
3. Add the wet ingredients. Mix in pureed pumpkin flesh. Add more milk if consistency is too thick.
4. Pour batter into paper wrappers in the muffin pan, about 2/3 of the way up for each.
5. Bake for 20 minutes or until cakes are fully baked, checking them with inserting a toothpick in the middle that comes out clean.
6. Let sit in muffin pan for one minute after removing from oven, then move cupcakes to a wire cooling rack. Let them sit for at least 30 minutes or until cool to the touch (feel the bottom of the cupcake to make sure it is completely cooled). Frost and serve!

Ginger Frosting
2 cups powdered sugar
½ cup unsalted butter
1 tablespoon ginger

1. Sift powdered sugar into bowl.
2. Melt butter, then add to sugar and mix well.
3. Add the ginger paste, and mix well. You may add more ginger to your liking.
4. Utilize for frosting delicious desserts!