One of my favorite traditions of Halloween is carving pumpkins. Every year we take ourselves to the good ol patch and pick out the perfect pumpkin to slice up, removing the goopy seeds, and carve into a cute lil face or evil ghost. And it's all due to a man named Stingy Jack.
According to History.com The practice of decorating “jack-o’-lanterns”—the name comes from an Irish folktale about a man named Stingy Jack—originated in Ireland, where large turnips and potatoes served as an early canvas. Irish immigrants brought the tradition to America, home of the pumpkin, and it became an integral part of Halloween festivities.
The Legend of "Stingy Jack"
People have been making jack-o’-lanterns at Halloween for centuries. The practice originated from an Irish myth about a man nicknamed “Stingy Jack.” According to the story, Stingy Jack invited the Devil to have a drink with him. True to his name, Stingy Jack didn’t want to pay for his drink, so he convinced the Devil to turn himself into a coin that Jack could use to buy their drinks. Once the Devil did so, Jack decided to keep the money and put it into his pocket next to a silver cross, which prevented the Devil from changing back into his original form. Jack eventually freed the Devil, under the condition that he would not bother Jack for one year and that, should Jack die, he would not claim his soul. The next year, Jack again tricked the Devil into climbing into a tree to pick a piece of fruit. While he was up in the tree, Jack carved a sign of the cross into the tree’s bark so that the Devil could not come down until the Devil promised Jack not to bother him for ten more years.
Soon after, Jack died. As the legend goes, God would not allow such an unsavory figure into heaven. The Devil, upset by the trick Jack had played on him and keeping his word not to claim his soul, would not allow Jack into hell. He sent Jack off into the dark night with only a burning coal to light his way. Jack put the coal into a carved-out turnip and has been roaming the Earth with ever since. The Irish began to refer to this ghostly figure as “Jack of the Lantern,” and then, simply “Jack O’Lantern.”
In Ireland and Scotland, people began to make their own versions of Jack’s lanterns by carving scary faces into turnips or potatoes and placing them into windows or near doors to frighten away Stingy Jack and other wandering evil spirits. In England, large beets are used. Immigrants from these countries brought the jack o’lantern tradition with them when they came to the United States. They soon found that pumpkins, a fruit native to America, make perfect jack-o’-lanterns.
I love Halloween! It's my favorite time of year. Everything is so pumpkiny and orange, not to mention the treats! Let's combine all of that sweetness and eat it! Here's my recipe for the yummiest pumpkin chocolate chip cookies. They're so fluffy and soft too.
1 cup (2 Sticks) unsalted butter (softened)
1 cup white sugar
1 cup light brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup canned pumpkin puree
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
2 cups milk chocolate chips
Nonstick cooking spray
Let's get our bake on:
Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray cookie sheets with nonstick cooking spray.
Beat butter until smooth. Beat in the white and brown sugars a little at a time so mix is nice and fluffy. Beat in eggs one at a time. Add vanilla and pumpkin puree.
In a separate bowl, mix together flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
Slowly combine the dry ingredient mix with the batter mix. Mix in the chocolate chips.
Scoop the cookie dough by heaping tablespoons onto the prepared baking sheets. Don't forget to lick the spoon!
Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until edges of cookies are browned. Remove from oven and let cool on cookie sheets for about 2 minutes before eating as many as you can stuff into your mouth. I promise, they're that good!
And there you have it! Homemade pumpkin chocolate chip cookies! Easy as pie, err, actually easy as cookies! Enjoy!
I know, I know, It's been about 6 months since my last post buuuuuttt..... In my defense, I've been busy. I'm sure you all have been too. It's no excuse really. We should make more of a priority for each other. I'm sorry. Do you forgive me? Good, because I have SO much to catch you up on!
Just to recap,1. StarrJoy16 is doing amazingly well, I'm even in boutiques across the U.S. (A serious dream come true).
2. I'm STILL single and have been on some horrendous dates (that yes, I will fill you in on).
And 3. I have been spending my free time baking (and Eating)... Let's not talk about that. Oh, Ok we will, I'll fill you in on some awesome recipes.
So stay tuned my friends, The bitch is back!
Hold your applause! I'll be updating you guys soon. Pinky swear. Cross my heart and hope to die!