Barbie Butz is an independent columnist for The Atascadero News and Paso Robles Press; you can email her at barbiewb@hotmail.com.

Halloween was very quiet here in the “country,” just 10 to 15 minutes from downtown Atascadero. Someone once asked me when we were getting street lights, and I answered, probably never as long as the moon shines!

However, I did see at least a hundred cars parked along Del Rio, on the west side of the freeway, Halloween night around 5:30 p.m. Parents were herding their little goblins into the development of homes, where they have street lights and sidewalks, so they could safely “trick or treat.” A big shout-out goes to the folks who live in those homes and who provided all those treats.

I buy treats (candy) and prepare to hand them out. When no one visits, we eat them! So much for self-control!

The Atascadero Printery Foundation will be holding a Founders Reception and Annual Meeting on Sunday, Nov. 14, from 2 to 4 p.m. at The Groves on 41. Anyone interested in the restoration of the historic Printery is invited to attend. The board will recognize the newest Founders and share an update regarding progress on the building and plans for the future.

Getting through this together, Paso Robles

There will be a traditional silent auction of exciting items. Refreshments will also be served.

Reservations are necessary to help plan for seating. Please RSVP by calling (805)466-1961 or emailing printeryfoundation@gmail.com

The nominating committee will present a slate for members of the Board of Directors, as several members’ terms are expiring. There are currently openings on the board for new members, so if you are interested in serving, please call Barbie at (805)461-1234. 

With Thanksgiving only 22 days away, you must be preparing your menu. Of course, it will include turkey and all the trimmings. And then there’s dessert, and I aim to help in this area. I’ll provide recipes for you to choose from in the rest of my columns until Thanksgiving on Nov. 25. So here’s a start with this make-ahead-and-freeze creamy pumpkin pie served with a cranberry-walnut sauce.

Creamy Frozen Pumpkin Pie

Ingredients:

2 8-ounce packages cream cheese, softened

1 15-ounce can pumpkin

½ cup granulated sugar

¼ cup packed light brown sugar

1teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

½ teaspoon ground ginger

½ teaspoon ground nutmeg

1 16-ounce container Cool Whip, thawed

1 9-inch prepared graham cracker pie crust

Directions:

In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat cream cheese and pumpkin until well combined. Add granulated and brown sugars, cinnamon, vanilla, ginger, and nutmeg. Fold in dessert topping. Spoon mixture into graham cracker crust. Lightly cover and refrigerate overnight before serving with Cranberry-Walnut Sauce, or a dollop of Cool Whip sprinkled with a light dusting of cinnamon or nutmeg.

Cranberry-Walnut Sauce

Directions:

In a small saucepan, combine 2 cups fresh or frozen cranberries, 1 cup granulated sugar, 2 teaspoons grated orange peel, ¼ cup fresh orange juice, ¼ teaspoon ground ginger, and ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon. Gently simmer for 15 minutes or until topping is reduced and syrupy. Cool. Just before serving, stir in 1/3 cup toasted chopped walnuts.

Note: The sauce would also be great on pumpkin pancakes or other desserts that need a little extra something!

Enjoy the fall colors all around us. 

Cheers!