Living in China, there are many things I miss about home. I'm more than positive I've lamented about missing certain events and foods before. But there is nothing quite like the arrival of Autumn, and living in the subtropics it's an occasion that I can only mark by a date on the calendar and pictures on Facebook of beautiful foliage, cozy sweaters and friends sipping their beloved pumpkin spice lattes. Correction: my beloved pumpkin spice latte. You see, there are Starbucks galore in this country, even a nice smattering of my sometimes preferred Costa Coffee, but there are NO pumpkin spice lattes. It's just not a thing here and it's one of the most heartbreaking truths of my reality (ugh, such first world problems!).
Since the thought of another whole pumpkin spice season without the cozy flavoured goodness that it is was just too much to bare, I decided it was time to roll up my sleeves and do something about it. So I made my own!
This came together soooo easily, and so quickly, I wonder if I'll ever buy the famously overpriced version again. I used some pumpkin I had leftover from a pie I made for our staff Thanksgiving feast (I'm not the only one that misses the seasons!), and it is the perfect recipe when you have an awkwardly small amount of puree leftover.
I also subbed in agave syrup for the sugar because I get jittery enough from the coffee, I don't also need the sugar high at 7:30 in the morning. Plus it's one of the few treasts I can find in this country so I'm determined to use it (ignore the fact that I have to take a 20 minute taxi ride to a Costco-like store to find it).
If you crave the pumpkin spice flavour this time of year, I strongly encourage you to try whipping up a batch of your own. You'll thank me later, so you're welcome now.
NOTE: pumpkin pie spice is not a thing here either, nor are ground cloves and nutmeg to make my own, so this recipe features the simple combination of cinnamon and ginger. If you want even more of an autumnal spice kick, I recommend adding approximately 1/4 tsp of each.
Pumpkin Spice Syrup
4-6 Tbsp pumpkin puree (canned or homemade, whatever works)
1/2 cup agave syrup
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 - 1 tsp ground ginger
1 cup water
- In a saucepan, combine all ingredients and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally so as not burn any of the pumpkin
- Once you reach a boil, turn down the heat and simmer for an additional 5 to 10 minutes until you reach a nice syrup-y consistency
- Allow to cool for at least 10 minutes before transferring to an airtight container, store in the fridge and enjoy!