Olive Lane Culinary - Archives

It is officially the unofficial end of Summer and beginning of Autumn; my favorite time of year! I love everything about Autumn and wish I could live in it perpetually. The crisp air, sweaters, hiking, the foliage, HUGE cuppa tea, a good book, and some tasty food…sign me up!

Autumn brings with it incredible food options which are full of beneficial nutrients. Just about everyone says they “love pumpkin” but what they really love is the pumpkin spice (ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, all spice, and cloves). We’ve got pumpkin spice everything now…latte, coffee, milk and milk alternatives, cakes, breads, pastas  and popcorn (I don’t know if that’s really real, but you get the point)…it’s everywhere. While I agree that pumpkin pie spice is delicious, we are really missing out on the great nutrients in the actual pumpkin!

Let’s take a look at what pumpkin has to offer:  low in sodium, saturated fat, and cholesterol. It is known to be a good source of the following vitamins and minerals: Vitamin E (Alpha Tocopherol), Thiamine, Niacin, Vitamin B6, Folate, Iron, Magnesium and Phosphorus,. It is rich in Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Riboflavin, Potassium, Copper and Manganese. 1 cup of cooked pumpkin has 3 grams of fiber.

Pumpkin is often found in baked goods…pumpkin pie anyone? I use it often to add moisture to my baked goods (check out the recipe below), and because I love pumpkin in general. You can also use it in savory applications including soups, roasted as a side dish, in pasta (gnocchi, ravioli), and more. I love a good roasted pumpkin with a little cinnamon and maple syrup drizzle on top.

The beautiful, bright orange color of the pumpkin is a great indication that this delicious squash is jam packed with a very important antioxidant, beta-carotene. What is beta-carotene and why is it important? Its a carotenoid; which is converted to Vitamin A in the body. Vitamin A  is essential for important functions in the body including  maintaining healthy skin, our immune system, good eye health and vision. Research has also shown that consuming a diet that is rich in beta-carotene foods may help protect against heart disease, and reduce the risk of developing certain types of cancers. As with everything in life, too much of a good thing, turns out to not be a good thing! Everything in moderation. Other foods that are rich in beta-carotene include: Winter Squashes such as: butternut, kabocha, acorn, etc. carrots, sweet potatoes, and Fruits such as cantaloupe and apricots.

Chai Pumpkin Scones

(Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Nut Free) – Yields 12 scones


  • 2 2/4 Cup Gluten Free Cup-for-Cup Flour (I use Better Batter Flour)
  • 2 teaspoons Xanthan Gum (omit if your Cup-for-Cup flour already contains this)
  • 1/3 Cup Sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon Baking Powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoon + 2 teaspoons divided Wildtree Chai Tea Mix
  • Or use: 1 teaspoon each of: ground cinnamon, ground ginger, and clove. 1/2 teaspoon each of: nutmeg, cardamom
  • 1/2 Cup Cold Earth Balance Butter Substitute (Or unsalted butter if not dairy free)
  • 1 1/2 Cup mix ins: Chocolate Chips, Nuts, Chopped crystallized ginger, etc. (optional)
  • 2/3 Cup pureed pumpkin
  • 2 Large Eggs

Method of Preparation

  1. Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit
  2. In large bowl; add flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and spices – mix until well combined
  3. Dice cold butter and add into flour mixture; combine with pastry blender until crumbly. Or – grate cold butter using the larger size of a cheese grater
  4. Stir in mix-ins; if using
  5. In a small bowl; combine pumpkin and eggs – mix until well combined
  6. Add pumpkin and egg mixture into flour mixture, stir until evenly moistened
  7. Divide dough into two; using a parchment or silplat lined baking sheet, roll each half in to a 6″ circle (should be 3/4 inch thick)
  8. Using a chef’s knife cut each round of dough into six pieces, gently pull apart; leave about 3/4 of an inch between each piece
  9. Gently brush the tops of the rounds with your choice of dairy free milk and sprinkle each with 1 teaspoon of  Chai Tea Mix
  10. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown


Chef’s Notes:

To make non gluten and dairy free – simply substitute out your regular all purpose flour and use butter – same amounts will work fine

Want to get fancy? Add a little drizzle of cinnamon or cardamom icing on top! Simply combine powdered sugar, non-dairy milk of your choice, and some spice of your choice until desired consistency is achieved. Drizzle on top of baked and cooled scones.