Celebrate fall at the Cotton Pickin’ Pumpkin Patch

Photo by Ann Cipperly

By Ann Cipperly

Whether you are baking pies or carving a happy face for a child’s party, pumpkins are a treat during the fall months. Pumpkins are in abundance annually at the Cotton Pickin’ Pumpkin Patch at Lazenby Farm. This is the seventh year the farm has held events on Saturdays from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. during October. Schools from east Alabama visit the farm on weekdays.

On Oct. 28, parents and children can take a hayride out to the pumpkin patch to select their own. Other activities for children include riding miniature ponies and going through a corn maze. There is also a corncrib and cotton trailer where children can play.

Candied apples, cookies and mulled apple cider are available in the gift shop.

The Lazenby farm was established in 1870 by Albert Lazenby. He taught farming to his son Roy Sr., who passed it on to his son Harry. The farm is operated by Harry and Jamie’s son, Mitch, and his wife Dawn, who are carrying on the family tradition of farming.

“We realized that children today are two and three generations removed from the farm,” says Dawn Lazenby, “and many of them have no idea of where their food and fiber comes from.  We started the pumpkin patch so we could showcase agriculture and educate children on the workings of a modern farm.

“When schools visit the farm,” adds Dawn, “they are given a guided tour where they are introduced to farm animals and some may even have the opportunity to bottle feed a calf. They pick cotton, soybeans and corn, and learn about each crop.  Since the American farm family is now less than 1{44c616e11cf70d617c8dd92fb0bc15f41001df771f775c6b004238009c89a3f0} of the population, we feel an urgent need to educate the public on how important farmers are.”

Two or three schools visit weekdays during October. Dawn shows the students around the farm. The farm is also available for events.

Cotton Pickin’ Pumpkin Patch at Lazenby Farm is located on Lee Road 54 (Society Hill Road).

Following are recipes from the Lazenby family and others in the community, featuring pumpkin for creating tasty fall desserts, as well as other dishes.

Ann Cipperly can be contacted at recipes@cipperly.com.


Pumpkin Patch Cookies
Carol Pridgen
1 pkg. sugar cookie mix
1 stick butter, softened
1 egg
Sugar, several tablespoons
Chocolate candies (Chocolate Kiss), unwrapped
Marshmallow pumpkins
Mini cupcake liners and mini cupcake baking pans
First, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line muffin pan with cupcake liners.
Mix first three ingredients together until a soft cookie dough forms.
Take 1 rounded teaspoonful of dough and roll it in sugar. Drop each one into the cupcake liners.
Then, bake cookies for about 7-8 minutes. Pull out pan and press a piece of chocolate into each cookie.
Place cookies back in the oven and bake for another 2-5 minutes until the edges of the cookies start to turn golden. (Note: The baking time may vary depending on your oven and size of your cupcake pan.)
Remove cupcakes from the oven and immediately press a marshmallow pumpkin on top of the chocolate pieces. The chocolate should be slightly melted, and the pumpkins will stick to the chocolate securely.
Allow cookies to cool in the pan before you remove them.

Pumpkin Fruit Dip
Jennifer Jones
Two 8 oz. pkg. cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup pumpkin (canned pure pumpkin), packed
2/3 cup toasted chopped pecans
1/4 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
1 Tbsp. vanilla
2 Tbsp. marshmallow crème
Apple slices and ginger snaps for serving
Mix all ingredients except apple slices and ginger snaps. Chill overnight.
Serve with apple slices and ginger snaps.

Pumpkin Cake Roll
Gigi” Blalock
Cake Roll:
3 eggs
1 cup sugar
2/3 cup pumpkin
1 tsp. lemon juice
¾ cup flour
1 tsp. baking powder
2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. ginger
½ tsp. nutmeg
½ tsp. salt
1 cup finely chopped pecans
Beat eggs at high speed for 5 minutes. Place mixer on low and gradually add sugar to the mixture. Fold in pumpkin and lemon juice. Mix next 6 ingredients together in another bowl then add to batter.
Spray jelly roll pan with Pam, and place wax paper in pan. Spray wax paper with Baking Pam. Spread pumpkin batter on wax paper. Sprinkle nuts over batter.
Bake at 375 for 15 minutes.
Flip roll on towel that has been covered with confectioner’s sugar. Peel off wax paper and roll. Place on rack to cool.
When cool, unroll and cover with filling. Roll again and sprinkle confectioner’s sugar over cake. If it cracks, just keep rolling and you can make them beautiful.
1 cup confectioner’s sugar
8 oz. pkg. cream cheese, softened
¼ cup melted butter
½ tsp. vanilla
Cream confectioner’s sugar and cream cheese; add melted butter and vanilla. Beat well. Make the filling while the cake is baking to have it ready when the roll is cool.

Pumpkin Gingerbread Trifle
Carol Pridgen
2 (14 oz.) pkg. gingerbread mix
1 (5.1 oz.) pkg. cook and serve vanilla pudding mix
1 (30 oz.) can pumpkin pie filling
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/3 tsp. cinnamon
1 (12 oz.) frozen whipped topping or whipping cream
Bag of gingersnaps.
Bake gingerbread according to directions. Cool completely.
Meanwhile, prepare the pudding and set aside to cool.
Stir the pumpkin, sugar and cinnamon into the pudding.
Crumble one batch of gingerbread into the bottom of a trifle bowl.
Pour 1/2 pudding mixture over gingerbread. Repeat.
Then add a layer of whipped topping.
Sprinkle top with crushed gingersnaps.
Refrigerate overnight.

Grandmother’s Pumpkin Pie
Lazenby family
1½ cups pumpkin, cooked and mashed
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ginger
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1/4 tsp. cloves
3 eggs, slightly beaten
1¼ cups milk
6-oz. can evaporated milk
9-inch pastry shell
Thoroughly combine pumpkin, sugar, salt and spices. Add eggs, milk and evaporated milk; blend. Pour into pie shell. Bake at 400 degrees 50 minutes.

Pumpkin Pecan Pie
Lazenby family
4 eggs, slightly beaten
2 cups canned or mashed cooked pumpkin
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup dark brown corn syrup
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
1 unbaked 9-inch pie shell
1 cup chopped pecans
Combine all filling ingredients except pecans. Pour into pie shell. Top with pecans. Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes or until set.

Paradise Pumpkin Pie
Lazenby family
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1¼ cup canned pumpkin
1 pastry shell
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup sugar
Maple syrup
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. cinnamon
Whipped cream
1 egg
1/4 tsp. ginger
1 cup evaporated milk
1/4 tsp. nutmeg 
2 eggs, slightly beaten
Dash of salt
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Combine softened cream cheese, sugar and vanilla, mixing well until blended. Add egg and mix well. Spread on bottom of pastry shell.
Combine remaining ingredients. Mix well. Pour over cream cheese. Bake 1 hour and 5 minutes. Cool. Brush with maple syrup, and then sprinkle with chopped pecans or top with whipped cream (or both).

Pumpkin Cheesecake Pie
Lazenby family
12 oz. cream cheese, softened
½ cup sugar
1½ tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1 cup canned pumpkin
2 eggs
1 graham cracker crust
Whipped cream or topping
In a mixing bowl, beat cream cheese, sugar and pumpkin pie spice on medium speed until smooth. Stir in pumpkin. Add eggs and mix until blended.
Place crust on a baking sheet. Pour filling into crust.
Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes or until center is almost set. Cool on a wire rack. Refrigerate for 3 hours or overnight. Serve with whipped cream, if desired. Makes 8 servings.

Pumpkin Crumble
Lazenby family
28-oz can pumpkin
12-oz can evaporated milk
1 cup sugar
3 eggs
4 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1 tsp. salt
1 box yellow cake mix
3/4 cup butter, melted
1/2 cup chopped pecans
Combine pumpkin, milk, sugar, eggs, spice and salt in a mixing bowl; mix well. Pour into greased 9×13-inch pan. Sprinkle dry cake mix over all. Drizzle melted butter on top. Sprinkle with pecans. Bake at 350 degrees for 50 minutes or until set.


Pumpkin Chip Cookies
Lazenby family
2 Tbsp. milk
2 tsp. baking soda
1 can “One Pie” pumpkin
2 cups sugar
1 cup oil
4 cups plain flour
4 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
2 tsp. cinnamon
2 tsp. vanilla
2 cups chocolate chips
Mix milk and soda together. Stir in pumpkin. Add sugar and oil. Mix flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, vanilla and chocolate chips. Combine with pumpkin mixture. Drop by teaspoonfuls on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 10-15 minutes.


Pumpkin Chiffon Pie
Lazenby family
1 envelope Knox unflavored gelatin
3/4 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. nutmeg
1 tsp. cinnamon
½ cup water
3 eggs, separated
1½ cups canned pumpkin
¼ cup sugar
9-inch baked pie shell
Whipped cream
Mix gelatin, dark brown sugar, salt, and spices thoroughly in a saucepan. Stir in milk, water, egg yolks and pumpkin; mix well. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until gelatin is dissolved and mixture heated thoroughly, about 10 minutes. Remove from beat and chill, stirring occasionally, until mixture mounds slightly when dropped from spoon.
Beat egg whites until stiff. Beat in sugar. Fold gelatin mixture into stiffly beaten egg whites. Turn into a baked pie shell and chill until firm. Serve topped with whipped cream.


Pumpkin Cheese Pie with Sour Cream Topping
Lazenby family
9-inch pastry piecrust
8-oz cheese, softened
3/4 cup sugar
2 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
1 Tbsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
1 tsp. grated lemon peel
1 tsp. grated orange peel
16-oz. can pumpkin
1/4 tsp. ground ginger
¼ tsp. vanilla
3 eggs
Sour Cream Topping (recipe follows)
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Beat cream cheese, sugar and flour in a large mixer bowl until blended. Add remaining ingredients, except topping. Beat on medium speed until smooth. Pour into pastry piecrust. Bake 50-55 minutes or until a knife inserted in center comes out clean. Immediately spread with Sour Cream Topping. Cool. Refrigerate at least 4 hours.
Sour Cream Topping
3/4 cup sour cream
1 Tbsp. sugar
1/4 tsp. vanilla
Mix ingredients. Spread over pumpkin pie. Can garnish with pecans around the rim of pie, if desired.

Pecan and Raisin Pumpkin Bread
Lazenby family
3 cups sugar
4 eggs
1 cup Crisco oil
2 cups (1 can) pumpkin
3½ cups flour (not sifted)
2 tsp. baking soda
1½ tsp. salt
1½ tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. nutmeg
2/3 cup water
1 cup chopped pecans
1 cup raisins
Mix sugar, eggs, oil and pumpkin. Combine flour, soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. Add dry ingredients alternately with 2/3 cup water. Fold in pecans and raisins. Pour in 4 greased 1 pound coffee cans (half full). Bake 1 hour at 350 degrees. When done, let sit 5 minutes and then shake out of cans. Can be frozen.

Pumpkin Bread
Lazenby Family
1 and 1/3 cup oil
5 eggs
16 oz. can pumpkin
2 cups all purpose flour
2 cups sugar
Two 3-oz. pkg. vanilla pudding
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1½ tsp cinnamon
1½ tsp. nutmeg
Chopped nuts (optional)
Beat all wet ingredients in a bowl. Mix all dry ingredients in another bowl except pudding. Slowly add dry ingredients to wet ingredients on low. Stir in pudding. Stir in nuts, if desired.
Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour for Bundt pan or two large loaves.


Fresh Pumpkin Bread with Cream Cheese Spread
Kammi Waggony
(Can use canned pumpkin, but the taste is not exactly the same.)
3½ cups flour
2 tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. baking powder
1 ½ tsp. salt
1 tsp. nutmeg
1 Tbsp. cinnamon
2 cups fresh, cooked pumpkin**
1 cup vegetable oil
1 tsp. vanilla
2/3 cup water
4 eggs
3 cups sugar
Combine dry ingredients (first six). I usually put this in a big Tupperware container and shake well.
In a mixing bowl, combine pumpkin, oil, eggs, vanilla and water (I reserve some of the juice from the pumpkin and use that with the water for more flavor) and sugar. Mix well.
Then add dry ingredients and mix well. Pour into loaf pans sprayed with Baker’s Joy. This recipe usually fills 7-8 mini loaf pans.
Bake at 350 degrees for 40-45 minutes or until a knife inserted comes out clean.
**Cooking a pumpkin is easy! My mother swears the fresh pumpkin is what makes this bread so moist. It’s worth it, and one pumpkin goes a long way.
You just slice up a regular pumpkin (not a small one) into 2-3 in squares once you have cleaned off all the pulp. Then cook the pumpkin in a large stockpot filled with water for several hours. (I boil it for about an hour and then keep it all at a good simmer for about 4 or 5 hours more until meat is soft. Once it is has cooled, slice the outer skin of the pumpkin and keep the meat of the pumpkin for baking.
Serve with Cream Cheese Spread.
Cream Cheese Spread
Two 8 oz. pkg. cream cheese, softened
2 sticks butter, softened
1 lb. box confectioners’ sugar
Dash of vanilla
Mix first three ingredients in a mixing bowl. Once thick and creamy, add a dash of vanilla; mix again.

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
Lazenby family
1 quart water
2 Tbsp. salt
2 cups pumpkin seeds
1 Tbsp. vegetable oil or melted, unsalted butter
Preheat oven to 250 degrees.
Pick through seeds and remove any cut seeds. Remove as much of the stringy fibers as possible.
Bring the water and salt to a boil. Add the seeds and boil for 10 minutes. Drain, spread on kitchen towel or paper towel and pat dry.
Place the seeds in a bowl and toss with oil or melted butter.
Spread evenly on a large cookie sheet or roasting pan.
Place pan in a preheated oven and roast the seeds for 30 to 40 minutes. Stir about every 10 minutes, until crisp and golden brown.
Cool the seeds, then shell and eat or pack in air-tight containers or zip closure bags and refrigerate until ready to eat. Makes 2 cups.


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