Recipe: Copycat Harry Potter Pumpkin Juice

homemade pumpkin juice via @poorandpretty 550

homemade pumpkin juice via @poorandpretty

This time last year, Stan and I were gearing up for our five-year-anniversary trip to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter! Since they’ve opened up the second part, I’m so wishing we could go back this year, but I’ll settle for making copycat drinks instead. (It’s much less expensive!) I made pumpkin juice for the first time a few weeks ago when Stan and I visited our friends Dave, Jessica, and their kiddies to watch Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. You know me — I love themed parties! I read a lot of recipes, and finally settled on an adaptation of this one from Bryton Taylor. It tastes pretty darn close to what they’re serving up in the Wizarding World. Even though it sounds like it would be gross, it’s actually really, really good. I was surprised how much I liked it. It would be a perfect kid-safe drink to serve at Halloween parties! Or spike it with a little bit of rum for adults. ;)

Pumpkin Juice, adapted from Bryton Taylor. Serves 8-10 people.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of water
  • 1 29 oz can pumpkin puree
  • 6 cups apple juice
  • 1 9.6 oz can pear nectar (about 1 1/4 cup)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbs pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 cup sugar

pumpkin puree via @poorandpretty

1. In a blender, blend water with canned pumpkin for a minute or so.

straining pumpkin via @poorandpretty

2. Sift this mixture through a fine mesh strainer, then pour the resulting liquid into a large saucepan or pot. Set the pumpkin puree aside.

pumpkin juice simmering via @poorandpretty

3. Add apple juice, pear nectar, vanilla extract, pumpkin pie spice, and sugar to the pot and let simmer for about 30 minutes.

4. Optional: Add 1/3 cup of the strained pumpkin puree and let simmer another 10 minutes or so. I like adding the extra pumpkin puree back in because it gives the juice a little more of a gritty, cider texture, but you should do what tastes best to you!

pumpkin juice via @poorandpretty

That’s really it! You can serve it hot or iced. (I prefer it hot.)

P.S. Can anyone guess whose wand that is? I’ll give you a hint: it belongs to my favorite Harry Potter character.

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Introducing Poor & Pretty Apothecary: 100% Natural Bath & Body

Poor & Pretty Apothecary Lineup_550

Poor & Pretty Apothecary Lineup_600

Say hello to my new lineup! Poor & Pretty Apothecary is a line of vegan, 100% natural sugar and salt scrubs, bathing salts, and whipped body butters. At this point, I have added almost everything to my Etsy shop. Here’s what you’ll find:

Lemon Bathing Salts and Sugar Scrub_600

Lemon Sugar Scrub (available in 4 oz and 8 oz jars) and Lemon Bathing Salts (12 oz). Aside from Vanilla (which actually has no pure essential oil), lemon is my favorite essential oil. It combines so well with the fair trade certified & organic cane sugar, coconut oil, and jojoba oil in my sugar scrubs and Dead Sea and Epsom Salts in my bathing salts. Lemon is a mood-booster, detoxifier, and energizer. Perfect for blasting away the impending winter gloom.

Lavender Sugar Scrubs_600

Of course, I already gave you a sneak peek at my exfoliating Lavender Sugar Scrubs — also in 8 oz and 4 oz.

Lavender Bathing Salts_600

I couldn’t resist making Lavender Bathing Salts, too. Organic lavender essential oil teams up with lavender and chamomile floral powders to relax your body and mind while Dead Sea and Epsom Salts soothe sore, achy muscles and re-mineralizing your skin.

Rose Bathing Salts and Salt Scrub_600

Rose essential oil and pink Himalayan Salts were a natural pair in my Rose Salt Scrub and Rose Himalayan Bathing Salts.

Rose Bathing Salts top_600

Himalayan Salt is the most sought-after bathing salt because it restores the natural chemical balance of the skin, helps heal psoriasis and eczema, eases muscular aches and pains, and reduces stiffness.

Rose Salt Scrub 8oz top_600

It’s also ideal for exfoliating scrubs because it improves circulation, and re-mineralizes and detoxifies skin. Add to that the cell regeneration, mood-elevating, and aphrodisiac qualities of rose essential oil, and you’ve got a beautiful thing. So skip the beauty nap and take a beauty bath!

Mint and Rosemary Bathing Salts top2_600

Now, I’ve never been a big fan of mint. I’ll occasionally have it in tea and it’ll sneak its way into chocolate or something, but I usually try to avoid it. There are a lot of mint lovers out there (including Stan), so I made Mint + Rosemary Bathing Salts, and I’m really glad I did! Mint and rosemary essential oils are fantastic at clearing up sinuses and stimulating the mind, and both have antiseptic and astringent properties. Ever wonder why mint is always in foot creams? That’s because it cools and deodorizes. So if you’re looking to take a soothing bath after a rough workout, this will be your new best friend.

Whipped Body Butter 8oz_600

I saved the best for last: my 100% organic Whipped Body Butter. When I whipped this together the very first time a few months ago, I thought I had somehow gained magical powers. This stuff is phenomenal. Made with certified organic cocoa and shea butters, and coconut and jojoba oils, this soft and creamy body butter is ultra-moisturizing.

Whipped Body Butter 8oz top_600

You only need a little bit, so this baby will last you a while, although it smells like chocolate so it is pretty addicting. (I actually had to pause typing so I could use some.) And it absorbs pretty quickly and doesn’t make your skin greasy. This is great for anyone because it’s so amazing, but especially for those with sensitive or dry skin. It comes in a 4 oz or 8 oz jar, but I sold out of my 4 oz jars at the Hartford HodgePodge, so I only have 8 oz listed on Etsy. Hopefully I’ll have time to whip some more up this weekend!

… And hopefully you’ll grab some of my new products and have yourself a spa night (or month). ;)

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Grand Relaunch this Saturday at Hartford HodgePodge

Lavender Sugar Scrub top 8oz_600

I have some pretty exciting news to share! I closed down my Etsy shop earlier this year to refocus and redefine what I wanted to bring to the world of handmade bath & body products. I’m stoked to announce that I will be launching a whole new product line (with a few classic favorites) this Saturday at the Hartford HodgePodge. Here’s a sneak peek:

Lavender Sugar Scrub top 8oz_600

Lavender Sugar Scrub 8 oz_600

The Poor & Pretty Apothecary line is 100% natural. Not 95% or 98%, 100%. This means absolutely no synthetic fragrances, dyes, or chemicals. No parabens, sulfates, no chemical preservatives… nothing you wouldn’t find in nature. And where I can, I use only certified organic and fair-trade certified ingredients. And of course, nothing is tested on animals, nor do I use any animal fats or by-products, so my products are still vegan-friendly. Hooray!

Come say hello at the Hartford HodgePodge this Saturday between 11-4! xo

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Inspiration: Jay Roeder

Jay Roeder feature

Jay Roeder - Simple Significant

I was in need of a little inspiration, so I thought I’d introduce you to designer and illustrator Jay Roeder. I met him at the SoNo Arts Fest this summer and brought home a few of his prints, including this one which I just hung in our living room. I love how it looks with my homemade pom-pom garland.

Jay Roeder - Make it Happen

Jay is a Minnesota native, trained at Sacred Heart University, and now living in Fairfield. I’m so glad he is, too, because I really love his work! It doesn’t look like his online shop is fully set up yet, but you can buy a few of his things via Society6, and probably message him on Facebook if you see a design you want.

Jay Roeder - Win Some Learn Some

I love what this implies: you’re always learning, even if it’s from mistakes.

Jay Roeder - Real Not Perfect

We have to remember that we’re never going to be perfect, and that’s okay.

Jay Roeder - Pizza Correct

Is it just me, or does anyone else think pizza looks way better when it’s cartoonized?

Jay Roeder - Be so Good Steve Martin

Such a great Steve Martin quote.

Jay Roeder - Tomorrow

And this, of course, reminds me of Jesse Pinkman.

Happy weekend!

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10 American Made Jeans Under $100

10 American Made Jeans Under 100 via @poorandpretty feature

10 American Made Jeans Under 100 via @poorandpretty

Now that I’m 27 and can no longer fit into the jeans I wore in high school (hello, hips!), I’ve been on a mission to fill my wardrobe with American-made jeans. I absolutely want my dollars to count toward ethically-sourced cotton and fair-wage practices, but I’m not going to pay couture pricing. Some companies really jack up their prices unnecessarily. After a little bit of hunting, I found 10 pairs of jeans made in the USA priced under $100.

American Made Jeans Under 100_1+2

1. On a Roller Derby Jeans by Angry Rabbit, $60. (via ModCloth)

2. Stretch Bull Denim Side Zip Pant in Dark Teal by American Apparel, $92.

American Made Jeans Under 100_3+4

3. Matchstick by Bluer Denim, $95.

4. Vera Skinny Jeans, $73. (via Ruche)

American Made Jeans Under 100_5+6

5. Gotta Jet Set Jeans in Red by Angry Rabbit, $60. They’re also available in Black. (via ModCloth)

6. Pencil Jean in Black & White by American Apparel, $94.

American Made Jeans Under 100_7+8

7. On The Road Skinny Jeans, $69. (via Ruche)

8. Front Row Fashionista Jeans by Angry Rabbit, $60. (via ModCloth)

American Made Jeans Under 100_9+10

9. Downtown Date Skinny Jeans in Blue, $69. Also available in Black. (via Ruche)

10. Zip On By Jeans by Kancan, $60. (via ModCloth)

 

Don’t forget to check your local consignment shops, too! I’ve found so many great American-made clothing deals at my favorite thrift stores.

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