In the last week, the weather in the Mid-Atlantic has turned decidedly chilly. As someone who walks around with a toaster oven strapped to her middle 24 hours a day, this is excellent news indeed. The crisp air means fall is on the way and we are anxiously awaiting its arrival. At present, there is no real evidence of changing leaves, but the promise of gold and red sun-kissed treetops is tantalizingly near. My inbox is overflowing with notices of apple picking and pumpkin patches, corn mazes and homemade apple cider, Halloween costume ideas and autumn inspired recipes and blogs everywhere are teeming with craft and food ideas to welcome the change in season.
One such blog I follow recently reported rumor of a canned pumpkin shortage and she rushed out to procure some before it was too late. Her errand yielded just 2 lone cans, a fact which, considering my penchant for fall goodies and a stocked pantry, sent me into a panic. Accordingly, I headed out myself this weekend to stock up one of my favorite and most versatile staples. I hit 4 stores before finding anything, and even then it was just a smattering of mostly dented cans. I bought them ALL. I am not a hoarder, by any means. But I like to be prepared and I use pumpkin in myriad recipes, all year long, but especially now when the temperatures start to plummet.
I have since read that pumpkin shortages in the Northeast are not just a rumor, but a reality. Many farmers are expecting record profit losses this year and farmers out west have found unexpected consumers for their crops. We had planned to take the boys to a pumpkin patch at some point this year, but based on this information I imagine we'll be taking them sooner rather than later before all the gorgeous, orange globes untouched by hurricane and tropical storm devastation are gone. Right now, though, I'm going to eat a delicious bowl of pumpkin soup secure in the knowledge that my pantry is fully stocked and there will be pumpkin pie and pumpkin cheesecake and pumpkin gooey butter cakes and pumpkin pasta and pumpkin pancakes any time we want them, all season long.