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Heart-Healthy Valentine’s Day at Hog Island Oyster Bar

Treat your loved one to a heart-healthy Valentine’s at Hog Island Oyster Co. Much has been written about the powerful love-enhancing qualities of oysters, but did you know these sweet little bivalves are super-stars of the health-food scene? Each single oyster contains a vast stockpile of naturally occurring vitamins, minerals and organic compounds. In fact, certain minerals are in their highest concentration in oysters. A single serving of raw oysters (3-6) will supply over 1,500 percent of the daily requirements of zinc, an essential mineral associated with supporting the immune system. Furthermore, rich in potassium and magnesium, oysters can actually help lower blood pressure and relax the blood vessels, thereby increasing circulation and reducing strain on the cardiovascular system as a whole. Enjoy a heart-healthy Valentines at Hog Island Oyster Co. Hungry for more facts?

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C CASA celebrates the (not so humble) bean

The recent National Bean Day made us realize that the humble bean with its delicious versatility is cause for celebration!  C CASA has known that all along and features beans in tacos, and sides and soups. One of their newest tacos is a colorful mix of Sweet Potatoes and Black Beans that has quickly become a favorite. For a quick and nutritious lunch, go for a side of their beans (your choice of black or white) and a small salad–beans, glorious beans!

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Have a hearty breakfast at The Model Bakery

Don’t let the mid-January, deep-winter blues get you down! Start your day right with a delicious and hearty breakfast at The Model Bakery! The Model Bakery is featuring two yummy additions to its breakfast menu, a Grilled Veggie Wrap, filled with eggs, mushrooms, country potatoes, fresh veggies and cheese in a spinach flour tortilla, or the new Grilled Breakfast Quesadilla, with eggs, ortega peppers, diced tomatoes, black forest ham, cheese and tomatillo salsa! Treat yourself to a tasty breakfast at the Model Bakery!

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525 Tons of freshly milled olives

The Olive Press’ milling season recently came to a close after a record 525 tons of beautiful California olives! Pay The Olive Press a visit today to learn about the milling and production process that takes place in order to create all of these fantastic oils! To expand the learning experience, be sure to taste all of the flavorful extra virgin olive oils, citrus crushed oils, and balsamic vinegars they have to offer! Enjoy!

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Bread—the Ideal Partner For Winter Soup

Whether sliced and toasted, or simply torn from a fresh loaf, Cate & Co. bakes breads that are sure to go with any of your favorite winter soups. If it’s French onion, go for the sourdough baguette, or the aged cheddar black pepper boule which makes for a savory partner to roasted tomato soup. The possible pairings are up to your palate and imagination.

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Hog Island welcomes executive chef Jeremy Zabel

Hog Island Oyster Co. welcomes executive chef Jeremy Zabel. A northern California native who grew up in Lake County, CA and a self-educated chef, Jeremy credits memories of family travel filled with “amazing foods” as his culinary inspiration, and hard work and experience as his teachers.

“I fell in love with seafood in New England, where my parents are from. I remember being 8 years old, eating lobster and fried clams alongside steaming bowls of chowder in Misquamicut, RI with my Mom and Memeire,” says Jeremy.

Jeremy has spent the past decade fine-tuning his talents at the Saw Shop Bistro in Kelseyville, CA – where (you heard us!) crab mac-and-cheese was a customer favorite. His focus is on crafting seasonal menus that showcase the best local ingredients. Jeremy’s passion for working with seafood attracted him to Hog Island Oyster Co. and Hog Island’s standards for supporting sustainable aquaculture, farming and fishing practices has him hooked. Jeremy is a family man, who acknowledges his incredible wife (Nicole) and three great kids (Hayden, 11, Madison, 9 and Jackson 6) as his Joi de Vivre. Stop by, say hello and enjoy Jeremy’s talents in the kitchen at Hog Island Oyster Co.

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Spice Up Your New Year

Ancho León, an exotic hand-crafted spirit, is one of Napa Valley Distillery’s newest players in an already star-studded cast. Their Distinguished Bar Club Members were the first to try their very first batch, and now it is available to the public.

Ancho León, what is it?

Ancho León is an ancho chile-infused Barrel Aged Brandy. It is made in a similar fashion as other NVD fan favorites: Brandy Cordial and the Grand California. Ancho León starts its life as a 3 year aged Premium Brandy, it is then re-aged in used Bourbon barrels for 6 months so that it takes on the delightful vanilla, brown sugar, and butter notes of really good Bourbon. They then add many, many, many Ancho Chiles, and infuse for a fortnight so that the Brandy has adequate time to fully absorb the complex flavor of the chiles.

The result is a unique, medium-spicy, slightly sweet liqueur of extraordinary charm and depth. They highly recommend that you try Ancho León in all of your standard repertoire of libations to give them a certain je ne sais quoi. Also, try your hand at creating your own bespoke libations that will delight your taste buds, and your guests, at your next cocktail soirée.

What’s in a name?

Ancho Chiles are the dried version of the poblano peppers common in Mexican cuisine, now ubiquitous state-side, think chile rellenos. Ancho Chiles have a deep red color and a wrinkled skin. They are sweet and smoky with a flavor slightly reminiscent of raisins. Their heat is mild to medium-hot.

Finally, León means “lion” – yes, like a tribute to the lion in the Napa Valley Distillery logo. Visit the Napa Valley Distillery BoozeLog for recipes and breaking NVD Booze News. Cheers!

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CUPCAKES FOR A CAUSE: THE NAPA VALLEY VINE TRAIL

Kara’s Cupcakes is sweetening January and the Napa Valley Vine Trail with a chocolaty chocolate vanilla chocolate chip cupcake — a chocolate cupcake with a chocolaty chocolate chip sweet vanilla frosting. A portion of the proceeds benefit the Napa Valley Vine Trail, an in-progress multi-use path connecting the entire Napa Valley for families to share. Available at the bakery or pre-order by calling (707) 258-2253.

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Stock a Healthy Larder

With the New Year come resolutions of all types, and if yours is to eat healthier Cate & Co. is a good place to start. Stock your larder with seeded crackers for power snacking, or cheese laces for a little indulgent crunch to have with your salads or soups. Cate’s Crunch is a G-Free granola that will get your day off to a healthy start with a dollop of Greek yogurt. Eat healthy in the New Year—no problem!

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Holiday Cookies from Kara’s Cupcakes

Say “Happy Holidays” with Kara’s Cupcakes holiday cookies! These festive treats make stocking stuffers, holiday and hostess gifts too! Christmas mitts, holiday tree and sparkle snowflake cookies are available for your holiday bash. Available in bakery and large orders too. Call 707-258-2253 to place your order today.

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Holidays at The Fatted Calf

It’s beginning to look a lot like the holidays around The Fatted Calf. The kitchen is in full swing preparing all of of their favorite seasonal delights from creamy boudin blanc with chestnuts to decadent foie gras terrines with Sauternes. Gift baskets are being filled with holiday treats: locally made jams and syrups, freshly pressed new olive oil, heirloom beans and grains, foraged wild mushroom goodies and more. The sales staff is ready to help you choose a succulent roast for your holiday table, prepare a party perfect charcuterie platter for your celebration or find just the right gift for all of the curious cooks and meat aficionados on your list. Pop in to the The Fatted Calf today and let the holidays begin!

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Spaghetti with Olive Oil, Garlic, Anchovies and Calabrian Pepper Recipe

Whole Spice will be offering a 20 percent discount to all Oxbow Newsletter readers the last three days of December! Also, Whole Spice has added Calabrian Peppers to its extensive chili collection! These pepper pods have a spicy, mildly fruity taste and aroma — not unlike habaneros, but a little bit milder and authentically Italian. Try them in this delicious Whole Spice recipe:

Spaghetti with Olive Oil, Garlic, Anchovies and Calabrian Pepper
(Serves 2)

Ingredients:
250 grams spaghetti
5 cloves fresh garlic, sliced
1 50-gram can anchovies
7 Calabrian pepper pods, chopped fine
2 Tbs. olive oil
1/4 bunch fresh parsley, chopped fine

Directions:
Cook spaghetti according to box instructions. Heat up olive oil over medium-low heat. Add sliced garlic and stir. Add chopped Calabrian peppers. Sauté on low to medium heat, to prevent the garlic from burning. Add anchovies and olive oil, breaking the anchovy fillets into the oil while making sure not to burn them. Immediately add cooked pasta and fresh parsley, and mix. Remove from heat and serve warm.

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Holiday Gifts from The Olive Press

Christmas is only ten days away… Give the gift of the most highly awarded olive oil in the nation! Shop the diverse olive oil and balsamic gift pack selection, as well as pantry, bath and tabletop items that The Olive Press has to offer. They grow it, they mill it, they bottle it, and they’ll send it! Small batch, Sonoma grown and pressed olive oil, infused with unique flavors for all to enjoy! The Olive Press wishes its customers a Happy Holiday season!

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Unique Tacos & Shareable Appetizers=Perfect Holiday Gathering Spot

If you’re looking for a casual, fun and lively place to meet up with friends over the holidays, stop by C CASA’s heated outdoor terrace. Their menu offers an array of shareable appetizers and unique tacos ideal for a casual afternoon or evening of festivities with friends. A select list of wine and beer perfectly complements the delicious and addictive “C Cuisine.” Call some friends and let the party begin!

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Fret-Free Appetizers from Cate & Co.

‘Tis the season for holiday parties, open houses, neighborhood gatherings — the list goes on! Fret not, Cate & Co. can help with their appetizer offerings! Choose from fig kalamata tapenade that is divine with goat cheese on crostini, or green olive tapenade that is bright and tasty spread on crackers, or a colorful curried pumpkin hummus that is lovely with pita chips or fresh vegetables. If bubbles are on your menu, you can’t go wrong with the house made Kennebec potato chips or the decadent white truffle version — sour cream and caviar are optional.

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Holiday Gifts for Italophiles

Beat the holiday countdown with Ca’Momi’s all-denomination Gift Certificates, sparkling Ca’Rosa and Ca’ Secco wines, and those irresistible bignès. These heartcrafted Italian treasures were born to be shared, and make perfect hostess or holiday gifts for Italophiles, and anyone with a sweet tooth. While you’re stocking up, grab a quick piadina or pizza lunch and put your order in for organic Holiday Tiramisù … luscious layers of espresso-soaked ladyfingers, mascarpone and chocolate that are sure to pick you up.

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Cheese for the Holidays

Yep it’s back! Oxbow Cheese & Wine Merchant got its first batch of Rush Creek Reserve in this week. This decadent, luscious cheese is produced by Uplands Cheese Co., an artisan farmstead cheese producer in Wisconsin. Rush Creek Reserve is inspired by the French Vacherin Mont d’Or, and is bound in spruce bark, which gives shape to the soft round and imparts a sweet, woodsy flavor to the cheese. Combined with the savory flavors born from the rind, this gives the custard-soft paste a deep but delicate richness, reminiscent of beef broth or finely cured meat. Perfect for any holiday party, this cheese will certainly be the the star. Only available in small quantities and for a limited time, get a wheel while you can! Also, talk to any staff member at the cheese counter to have a custom cheese platter put together for your special party or event you may have this holiday season.

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Christmas Celebrations Made Easy with The Model Bakery

Let the Model Bakery make your Christmas celebration that much easier with fresh home-baked treats for your holiday table! Choose from a variety of freshly baked breakfast pastries, breads, and incredible desserts — all to help make your holiday feast easy and yummy. Pastries include panettone, cinnamon rolls, pumpkin loaf, and, of course, the famous Model Bakery English muffins. Bread for the table? That’s easy with their signature pain au levain boule, cranberry walnut levin batard, dinner rolls, ciabatta and focaccia, and plenty of other options. And don’t forget dessert…iced cookies, Buche de Noel, peppermint cake, pies of all sorts and more! Orders must be placed by 12 noon on Monday, December 21 to pick up on Thursday, December 24 between 6:30 am to 4 pm. Call 707-259-1128, or email to place your Christmas order today!

2015 Christmas Specials

Breakfast Pastries
Panettone (with golden raisins, dried cranberries, candied orange and lemon peel) –  $25
Cinnamon Roll/Sticky Bun Ring (5) – $18
Danish Braid (Serves 8-10) – $30
Morning Pastries – $3-$4
English Muffins (6) – $14
Pumpkin loaf maple glaze (Serves 8) – $25
Gingerbread Loaf or Cranberry Orange Nut Loaf – $8

Organic Artisan Breads
4# Signature Pain au Levain Boule (Organic European style country sourdough) – $9
Cranberry Walnut Levain Batard (sm/lg) – $3.50/$6.25
Walnut Sage Batard (sm/lg) – $3.25/$5.95
Pain de Mie Dinner Rolls (12) – $8
French or Sourdough Rolls (12) – $8
Ciabatta or Focaccia Rolls (12) – $8

Cookies
Iced Christmas Sugar Cookies – $2-$3
Christmas Trees, Snowmen, Snowflakes, Mittens, Stockings, Stars 
Gingerbread Cookies – $1.75-$3
Men, Houses, Bears
Small Assorted Cookies – $1.75-$2
Apricot Rugelach, Raspberry Linzer, Chocolate Krinkles, and Coconut Macarons
Cookie Platter (Baker’s Dozen) – $35
Wrapped with cellophane and Christmas Ribbon

Model Bakery Cookbook & Cookie Platter – $60

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Holiday Gift Sets from Ritual Coffee Roasters

For the coffee lover on your list, be sure and stop by Ritual Coffee Roasters for a really nice selection of holiday gift sets, complete with free gift packaging to boot! Get a cup of coffee, fuel up, and get your shopping done — all in one go! Ritual’s making it easy this season.

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Gifts that Put the Spirit in Holiday Spirit

Let Napa Valley Distillery (NVD) take you on a journey of gift sets, premium craft spirits, and bottled cocktails where you are sure to find the perfect treat for that special someone (or yourself!). They have the perfect solutions to make your holiday shopping quick, easy, merry, and bright. Can’t decide? NVD Gift Certificates are always a great option, it’s the gift that lets them choose.

Perfect Holiday Gift ideas:

A 1 Year Distinguished Bar Club Membership

This is truly the gift that keeps giving the whole year. Every quarter (March, June, September, December) get all the newest, best and most unique that Napa Valley Distillery has to offer. Whether it’s limited release brandies, seasonal spirits, bottled cocktails, fabulous bitters, or expertly crafted syrups, gums and mixers – each shipment will contain only the best we make and have to offer!

Choose from a selection of preselected gift sets or create your own.

Here are just some of the gift sets available from Napa Valley Distillery:

Best of the Holidays

For the person who likes the best of the best! Our “Best of the Holidays” are three of our favorite spirits all in one convenient gift set. Each Best of the Holidays gift set contains one bottle each of our award-winning Napa Valley Neutral Brandy, Old Hollywood Ginn and the product that started it all… our Meyer Lemon Variety- like we said, simply the best!

NVD Start (or finish) Your Collection

Collect them All! Want to introduce anyone to NVD’s classics, best of the best, the cr?me de la cr?me? Do you know any enthusiast of fine crafted spirits? Then this is the gift pack for you! Get one bottle each of the finest NVD had to offer in this premium gift set! Each gift set contains one bottle each of: Old Hollywood Ginn, Brandy Cordial, Neutral Brandy (Vodka), Meyer Lemon Varity, and Manhattan Cocktail.

Warm and Cozy Gift Set

Oh the weather outside is frightful, but this cocktail is so delightful. Let it snow! Stay indoors and snuggle in deeper to your slippers and enjoy these warm and cozy spirits! Or! Share the cozy experience with someone you love. Each gift set includes one bottle each of: Old Hollywood Ginn, Brandy Cordial, Cherry Brandy.

The Manhattan Gift Set

Let’s hear it for New York! The timeless Americana cocktail that has been perfected with the traditional maraschino cherry. Send the gift of age-perfected drink that takes less than a New York minute to make. Don your best top hat, plop a cherry, pour the drink, and settle in your lounge chair by the fire before the frost can nip your nose. You’ll be king of the hill when you give the gift with the namesake of the world’s most famous island. Each gift set includes one bottle of NVD’s Brandy Manhattan Cocktail, and a 12oz jar of Luxardo Premium Maraschino Cherries.

Click here for additional gift sets and ideas.

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Celebrate Hanukkah Sweetly!

Celebrate a sweet and joyful Hanukkah and Christmas season with cupcakes and cakes from Kara’s Cupcakes! Kara’s also caters beautiful events and delivers too!  Don’t forget to pre-order your Hanukkah celebration cake — a seasonal holiday favorite creating sweet celebratory moments. To place your order, stop by the bakery, call 1-866.554-CAKE (2253), or order online.

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New to Cate & Co.: Take & Bake Pies

There is nothing as enticing as the smell of a pie baking. New this year: frozen Cate & Co pies — they make and you bake! Enjoy the heartwarming smell of a delectable g-free pie baking in your kitchen. Pies include old fashioned pumpkin, pink lady apple and maple walnut pecan. Each pie comes with instructions for baking, and no one needs to know you didn’t make it yourself!

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December Enchilada Special

December is a busy month, and we all look for quick and delicious meal solutions—our choice is the C CASA December enchilada plate special! The plate includes a pork enchilada with four cheeses, topped with mixed greens, pico de gallo and horseradish crema accompanied by a Caesar salad, and a chocolate bite with peppermint cinnamon glaze. For just $13, you’ll feel well fed and ready to take on the next task on your “to-do list.”

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1931 Chateau Mossé Rivesaltes

Do you know anybody whose birth year is 1931? Or who simply wants to do a little vinous time travel? Oxbow Cheese & Wine Merchant has gotten its hands on a few bottles of 1931 Chateau Mossé Rivesaltes. This an extraordinary “Vin Doux Naturel” from the Roussillon region of France, only bottled in 2013. It is sweet but in no way cloying, with incredible length and complexity. A “vin de meditation” as the French would say, a wine to savor and contemplate, as words simply can’t do it justice. $173 a bottle, or have a taste at the Wine Bar, $26.

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Gifts for Everyone on Your List

The Olive Press has the prefect gift for everyone on your list this holiday season! They grow it, they mill it, they’ll wrap it, and they’ll send it! Give the gift of small batch, Sonoma-grown and pressed olive oil…the most highly awarded in the nation! Explore their gift packs with an array of unique varietals and combinations of olive oils and balsamic vinegars. Or, let your loved ones choose with a gift card from The Olive Press.

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Making the Shopping Season Sweeter

Ca’ Momi Enoteca is making the shopping season sweeter with  organic holiday tiramisu — a heartcrafted, show-stopping, family-sized dessert for $35. Ca’ Momi’s desserts, bite-sized bigne included, are made to order, so please give 24-48 hours’ advance notice. Add some Neapolitan pizza and salad, and you’ve got a full family dinner ready to go. Gift certificates in any amount are also available.

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Thankgiving Treats from The Model Bakery

The Holidays are officially here and it’s time to order your Thanksgiving table treats from the Model Bakery. Choose from a variety of freshly baked breads and pastries, incredible side dishes including cranberry sauce, Model Bakery bread stuffing, heirloom butternut squash gratin, and more — all to help make your holiday feast easy and yummy. And, don’t forget the dessert…iced cookies, tarts, cakes, and of course, pies of all sorts! Orders must be placed by 12 noon on Monday, November 23 to  pick up on Wednesday, November 25 between 6:30 am to 6:30 pm. Call 707-259-1128, or email The Model Bakery to place your Thanksgiving order today.

The Model Bakery Thanksgiving Specials 2015

Breakfast  
• Cinnamon Roll/Sticky Bun Ring (5) – $18
• Danish Braid (Serves 8-10) – $30
• Morning Pastries (croissants, muffins, scones) – $3-$4
• English Muffins (6) – $14
• Pumpkin Bread Loaf with Maple Glaze (Serves 8) – $25
• Cranberry Orange Nut Loaf (Serves 3-4) – $8
• Pumpkin Gingerbread Loaf (Serves 3-4) – $8

Organic Artisan Breads
• 2# Pain au Levain Boule – $5.50
• Walnut Sage Levain Batard – $5.95
• Pain de Mie Dinner Rolls (12) – $8
• French or Sourdough Rolls (12) – $8
• Ciabatta or Focaccia Rolls (12) – $8

Sides
• Cranberry Orange Sauce – $10 ea
• Model Bakery Bread Stuffing (walnut sage bread, celery, onions, mushrooms, leeks) – $10/qt
• Sweet Potato Casserole (with pecans, coconut and brown sugar topping – serves 6-8) – $20 ea
• Heirloom Butternut Squash Gratin (with gruyere cheese, cream and sage – serves 6-8) – $20 ea
• French Green Bean Casserole (with porcini-shallot béchamel and fried shallots – serves 6-8) – $20 ea
• Triple Cream Brie with Dried Fruits and Nuts (with cranberries, apricots, walnuts, pecans and spiced apricot Chutney – for baking) – $15 ea 

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Bath & Spa Collection from The Olive Press

Treat yourself or someone special to the Bath & Spa Collection handcrafted in California, delicately scented, soft, and velvety, all made with fabulous extra virgin olive oil! The Olive Press featured oil and vinegar of the Month: ascolano olive oil and cranberry balsamic vinegar. In time for the holidays, start enjoying or sharing this flavorful and colorful pair!

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Oysters for the Holidays

Give thanks for our fresh, local bounty from the sea. Hog Island oysters make a welcome addition to your holiday feasts. Serve as a light yet savory appetizer, raw on the half shell with Hog Wash, Baked Hog Island Oysters Fungi, or try a classic herbed oyster stuffing. Any way you shuck them, fresh local oysters are always a treat. Call 707-251-8113 or stop by Hog Island Oyster Bar to place your orders by Tuesday, November 24 by 5 pm, and pick up on Wednesday, November 25 before 5 pm.  All oysters and shellfish are sold live, in the shell.

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“Yes, I Am The Muffin Man” Recipe

Napastak has an extensive selection of baked goods and bakeware, to help you make delicious bread, pies and cookies. Here’s a simple but delicious recipe for muffins, using Haulin’ Oats and pumpkin spice emulsion, both available at Napastak.

“Yes, I Am The Muffin Man” Recipe

Ingredients:
1 sm. can (15oz.) pumpkin
1/2 cup applesauce
2 large eggs
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 3/4- 2 cups flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. pumpkin spice emulsion or 2 1/2 pumpkin pie spice
1/2 tsp. salt
1 16 oz. mason jar of Haulin’ Oats, Chai a Little Tenderness, or Cinnamon Girl

Directions:
Heat oven to 350. Grease bottom only of muffin pan. Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix together. Pour into muffin cups and bake until muffins are slightly puffed and golden brown, about 25 minutes. Makes approximately 10-12 muffins, depending on tin size.