Happy pumpkin spice season to all, and to all a happy pumpkin spice season! But I am Ebenezer Scrooge and I say, “BAH HUMBUG!”
In just about every grocery store this time of year, you will find an abundance of foodstuffs that taste or smell — or at least attempt to taste or smell — like pumpkin spice. It is called pumpkin spice, but it’s really just a mix of cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, clove and allspice — which means most of the products do not taste like pumpkin; they taste like the spices one associates with pumpkin dishes or pumpkin pie.
In the store where we shop, as I walk down almost every aisle, I am assaulted with an assortment of pumpkin spice products which in my opinion have gotten weirder and wackier every year. Recently I saw Swiss Miss Pumpkin Spice Hot Chocolate, which you can top with Pumpkin Spice Marshmallows. Or how about this… you can munch on some Planters Pumpkin Spice Almonds, while guzzling down a Bud Light Pumpkin Selzer?
But seriously, how much pumpkin is too much? Here though to my way of thinking or should I say, my way of eating is just too much – Cup of Noodles (made by Nissen Foods) has a Pumpkin Spice Flavor with other natural flavors ramen noodle cup. And there are even Pumpkin flavored dog treats! Now, how could any puppy pass up Bil-Jac’s Dessert Jac’s Pumpkin Flavor Dog Treats, which are even pie shaped?
But I am drawing a line in the sand – NO PUMPKIN SPICE FLAVORED BLACK TEA! Fall has already been with us for a few weeks and many of my fellow tea drinkers have been waiting to indulge in this favorite seasonal drink – but I can wait! The spicy combination of spices that is SUPPOSED to remind us of pumpkin pie, in my opinion is just unnatural in a black tea. If I want some pumpkin pie, I will enjoy a piece that is topped with homemade whipped cream and not filling my teacup. And chances are most of the pumpkin spice teas out there are perhaps not even made with real spices, even though they claim to be – they are probably just flavorings. But I do admit that I am a purist at heart, and I don’t want my Assam Sessa Estate Indian Black Tea, “messed with.”
But don’t get me wrong – I will celebrate this fall harvest season with cozy and comforting teas that will keep me warm as I’m buried deep in fluffy blankets and those teas will carry me right into the winter holidays, but they will be minus the pumpkin pie spices. However, the wafting aroma of a freshly baked pumpkin pie will be cooling on my kitchen counter.