I rarely mention my work when writing the blog because I really do like that separation of work-life and home-life. It’s my personal separation of Church and State.

Once in a while, however, the two do come together – Thursday was a perfect case in point. Several times a year we do an employee meeting and Flyer Tasting so the staff can get an idea of the products we’re going to be highlighting in the upcoming Fearless Flyer™. The actual tastings can come in various forms, from informal a few products at a time in the break room to more elaborate spreads with 30 or more products being sampled. Thursday was the latter.

Our kitchen set-up at work is aimed towards continually making small quantities of things throughout the coarse of the day. It’s perfect for offering samples of things – everything is always fresh, nothing is sitting around. It is not, however, conducive to getting the equivalent of Thanksgiving Dinner for 80 people prepared in a timely manner.

So Elizabeth and I bring things home to prepare. It is just so much easier to mass-produce items at home. And Victor is always there to help clean up!

I brought home chickens and pot roasts – and a couple dozen boxes of breads, bars, scones, and rolls to bake. I accomplished in 4 hours what would have taken me 16 at work.

The fun part was having Nonna keep coming into the kitchen and just not quite grasping why I was making and baking such vast quantities of food – and that I was going to be leaving again to go back to work after already working all day.

Now… because I’m all about all things pumpkin, I think my favorite was the Southwestern Pumpkin Sauce. It was a wing-it recipe that really came out good.

Southwestern Pumpkin Sauce

  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1 ctn Pumpkin Soup
  • 1 can Pumpkin
  • 2 bags diced pumpkin
  • 1 btl Enchilada sauce
  • 2 cans Diced Green Chiles
  • 1 jar Roasted Red Peppers, diced
  • 1/2 tsp Chipotle Powder
  • Salt & Pepper, to taste

Saute onion is a small amount of oil until translucent. Add chipotle powder and saute briefly. Add remaining ingredients and bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer until the diced pumpkin is cooked through and the sauce has thickened.

Serve with ravioli or your favorite pasta.

I served Victor’s and my dinners with grilled andouille sausage. Nonna had an Italian sausage and tomato sauce ‘cuz she doesn’t care for pumpkin or spice.

The tasting was a hit and dinner the following night was a hit at home.