Well, it was another fun-filled, Fall weekend in our house. On Saturday, my daughter and I had a father/daughter day. We headed down to Milwaukee to see the “Discover the Dinosaurs” exhibit at the State Fairgrounds. My daughter loves dinosaurs so she had a blast seeing all her favorites come to life. It wasn’t cheap, but seeing as her birthday was just a few days away (October 31st) I figured it would make a good present and I wasn’t wrong. After that we grabbed a bite a A.J. Bombers for some of the best burgers in Milwaukee and a Root Beer float for her. We finished off the day stopping at Cabela’s as she likes all the animal dioramas they have there. We were extra lucky as there was a young lady at the indoor archery range. My daughter has recently decided that she wants to learn how to shoot bow and arrow so she was fascinated by watching this young woman shoot. She even gave Gigi a few pointers.

On Sunday my brother and his family came up for the day. My town always does Trick-or-Treating on the Sunday before Halloween so they brought their 3-year-old daughter up to go Trick-or-Treating with Gigi. Unfortunately (or maybe fortunately) Gigi had a Halloween party to attend before Trick-or-Treating so to keep their daughter occupied we headed over to The Little Farmer, which long time readers of my blog will know, is one of my favorite places, on Earth, during the Fall. We fed the goats, played on their playground, ate caramel apples, brats and apple muffins and walked away with a couple of gallons of cider and a few bags of apples, just for good measure. We arrived home just as Gigi got home from her party. The kids changed into their costumes and off we went Trick-or-Treating. Gigi is in love with Merida, from the move “Brave” so my wife made up a dress for her, bought her a wig and Nerf bow and arrow set. She looked great!!!

With everything going on, I didn’t get a chance to do much cooking, but I did get a chance to make up a coffeecake for Sunday’s breakfast. I came up with this recipe on the fly, after looking at a few coffeecake recipes I had floating around. While I am a huge fan of pumpkin recipes, I hate jumping on the bandwagon and offering up a recipe for yet another baked good featuring pumpkin. To me, it just gets to be over done. The blogosphere always seems so fixated on pumpkin this time of year, it gets to the point of oversaturation. But I promise…I will not overdo the pumpkin thing. In fact, chances are you might get 1 or 2 more pumpkin recipes out of me this year, if even that. I refuse to bow to the pressure!

Pumpkin-Cranberry Coffeecake with Maple Icing
serves 9-12

Crumb Topping
1/2 cup Flour
1/4 cup Butter, cold, diced
1/2 cup Brown Sugar
1/4 tsp. Salt
2 tsp. Ground Cinnamon

2 cups Flour
1 tsp. Baking Soda
1/2 tsp. Baking Powder
1/2 tsp. Salt
2 tsp. Ground Cinnamon
1/2 tsp. Ground Nutmeg
1/4 tsp. Ground Clove
1 cup Pumpkin Puree
3/4 cup Brown Sugar
1/2 cup Vegetable Oil
1/2 cup Buttermilk
1 cup Dried Sweetened Cranberries, roughly chopped

Maple Icing
1 cup Powdered Sugar
3 Tb. Maple Syrup
2 Tb. Milk

Preheat your oven to 350°F. Generously grease a 9×9 baking dish. For the crumb topping combine the flour, brown sugar, slat and cinnamon and mix well. Cut in the butter until the mixture forms coarse crumbs. Set aside.

In a medium sized bowl combine the pumpkin puree, brown sugar, oil and buttermilk. Mix until well combined. In a large bowl combine the dry ingredients and stir to combine. Add the cranberries and mix. Pour in the liquid ingredients and mix gently, trying not to over mix the batter, but making sure that the dry ingredients are fully incorporated into the wet. Pour into the prepared pan and top with the crumb topping. Bake for 45-50 minutes, or until a tester, inserted into the middle comes out relatively clean. This is a heavy moist cake so it won’t come out completely clean.

Place on a cooking rack and allow to cool for 15 minutes. Meanwhile combine the ingredients for the icing and drizzle over the coffeecake. You will have extra leftover. Cut into either 9’s or 12’s and serve.