Friday, October 29, 2010

Fabulous Fall Foods - Last Week!!

I can hardly believe that October is coming to a close and this is the last week of Fabulous Fall Foods.  Time is just ticking away!

Again, you will have until Wednesday to post your recipe, (anyone can join in).  Post your recipe to your blog, then come back here and leave me a comment that it is up.  I will check it out and put a link on this post to your site.  Then, on Thursday of the coming week, I will draw a name from the magic pot.  The lucky winner will take home the Gooseberry Patch cookbook, Homemade Harvest with maybe a surprise tuck-in or two.  So come on, whip up some fun fall food. That kind of mail is always super fun to get!

Here in our neck of the woods, there are a few cranberry bogs.  This time of year you can drive up to the Longbeach Peninsula and find stands set up along side the road with cranberries for sale.  I always try to get up there and grab a bag or two.  Cranberries are one of my favorite fall time and holiday time flavors.  Delishious!

Fruity Cranberry Chutney

2-1/4 cups packed brown sugar
1-1/2 cups cranberry juice
1/2 cup cider vinegar
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
24 oz fresh or frozen cranberries
2 medium oranges,  peeled and sectioned
1 medium tart apple, peeled and coarsly chopped
1/2 cup dried currants or golden raisins
1/2 cup dried apricots, coarsly chopped
2 tablespoons finely grated orange peel

In a large saucepan, combine the brown sugar, cranberry juice, vinegar, ginger and allspice.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce heat;  simmer, uncovered for 2 minutes or until sugar is dissolved.

Stir in the cranberries, oranges, apple, currants, apricots and orange peel.  Return to a boil.  Reduce heat;  simmer, uncovered, for 45 minutes or until thickened, stirring occasionally.  (This is my favorite part.  I love to hear the cranberries popping!)  Cool to room temperature.  Transfer to a serving dish;  cover and refrigerate until chilled.  
Makes about 5 cups.

Now, traditionally you think of cranberry sauce or chutney being served with turkey, right?  Try it on some grilled halibut.  To.Die.For.!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Lost in the Maze

Enter at your own risk

Ah!  That was easy this year.  All who entered with us exited as well.

Monday, October 25, 2010

It was a Dark and Stormy Night....

Not really, but Halloween week is upon us and work has had me bogged down for so long that I haven't had a chance to tell you all about our trip to the pumpkin patch and corn maze this year, so I think I will try and post a picture or three each day this week from our day on Sauvie Island.  Sound like fun?  Okay, come on.  Let's head out...
Brittany and Chris were the perfect pumpkins.  That third hole was reserved for Noah's little face but he said, "No Bana.  I don't want to."  So only his Mommy and Daddy did.  Not even bribes worked.  Maybe next year.

Noah convinced Papa and his Mommy to join him on the cow ride.  He's just a tad of a bossy cow himself and choose where everyone was to sit.  It was a super fun ride with lots of giggling going on.

When little men and their momma's and grandpa's are enjoying a cow ride, it's the perfect opportunity for their daddy and uncle to grab a snack.  The Pumpkin Patch has some yummy food stands.  Chris and Dustin had barely gotten out of the truck before they had hot dogs in hand and here, a mere 15 minutes later, they were scarfing down pulled pork sammies.  Mmmmm....
Tomorrow we'll move on to the corn maze.  Hope you had a good time so far.  Thanks for joining us!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Fabulous Fall Food Friday - Week 5

Pumpkin- Apple Butter

2 cans pumpkin (15 oz. each)
2 cups applesauce
2/3 cups brown sugar, packed
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. nutmeg
1-1/2 Tblsp. fresh ginger, peeled and grated

In a saucepan over medium heat, stir together all ingrediants until blended.  Bring to a boil, stirring constantly.  Reduce heat to low and simmer, uncovered, stirring often for 30 minutes, or until mixture is very thick.  Cool;  spoon into airtight containers.  Keep refrigerated for up to 2 weeks, but don't do it.  Share with friends instead!


This Pumpkin-Apple Butter is so super easy to make and really delicious.  Incredible on warm homemade biscuits!  

Week 5 of Fabulous Fall Foods Friday is upon us already which means this fall is going fast!  I hate that part but I'm loving all the wonderful recipe's everyone is posting!  
Thanks so much, all, for joining in.  One more week to go, then someone wins the drawing for the Gooseberry Patch cookbook, Harvest Home!  (and maybe another tuck-in or two added in...)  If you haven't yet joined in, there is still time to get your name in the drawing.  All you have to do is post a fall recipe on your blog, then leave me a comment that you have done so.  I'll post a link below to your recipe and you are entered.  Easy as...well...pumpkin pie!  So come on, tie on an apron and get cooking!  You have until Wednesday to post for this week and then we are on to the final week of Fabulous Fall Foods.  Each week that you participate gets you another entry into the magic cooking pot. 
Follow the links below for this weeks recipes!

                 A day at the pumpkin patch isn't complete without a yummy bag of kettle korn!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Piles of Pumpkins

Pumpkins are the essence of fall.  They hold magic and possiblities in their orange roundness.  When my friend, Alli, suggested getting together and making these super easy, super cute fabric pumpkins, I jumped in with both feet. 
These are a few of the pumpkins that I put together. A couple of mine were made completely of wool felt, the stem and leaves as well, but I see that neither of them made it into the picture. 
Three of us got together with our pumpkin making supplies and had a spookily good time making pumpkins.
They are really easy and quick.  You can find all the instructions over at Alli's blog, Chicken Scratch Creations. 
Happy Pumpkin Making!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Fabulous Fall Foods - Week 4

Seems like fall is flying by.  I can't believe it's week 4 of Fabulous Fall Foods already.  Holy Cow!
Fall days are not always golden and beautiful, somedays they are wet and stormy, which I love just as well.  Those stormy one's are perfect for tucking in, doing some cooking and catching up on some craft projects.
For our stormy day this past week, I made a pot of bubbling French Onion Soup and toasted some open-faced roast beef sandwich's.  Yummy!

French Onion Soup and Toasted Roast Beef Sandwich's

1 medium yellow onion
1 medium red onion
1 medium leek (use white part only)
5 green onions with tops
1 garlic clove, minced
2 Tblsp. butter
40 oz. or so beef broth
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1 cup of red wine ( I used a nice flavorful Cabranet)
Shredded Cheese ( I used a blend of parmesan and swiss)
Slices of French bread

Slice all onions about 1/4" thick.  In a soup pot over medium heat, saute' onions and garlic in butter for about 15 minutes or until golden and tender.  Add broth, worcestershire sauce, nutmeg and wine.  (Now's a good time to pour a glass for yourself as well.)  Bring soup to a boil.  Reduce heat;  cover and simmer for at least 30 minutes.  I think the longer it simmers, the better it is.  Mine simmered away for about 2 hours before we ate.   
Put hot soup into oven-safe bowls, top each with a slice of french bread  and a handful of shredded cheese.  Place on cookie sheet and toast.
I have a "Toasting" setting on my oven, which toasts for 4 minutes and works beautifully.  If you don't have that setting, broil will work just fine.

OH!  Wait a minute.  Get that soup back out of the oven!!! Got it?  Oh good.  We forgot to put the sandwich's on there. 

Toasted Roast Beef Sandwich's

You will need more slices of French bread, sliced cheese and deli-sliced roast beef.  I tossed a handful of roast beef right into my simmering soup for just a few seconds, pulled it back out with a fork and arranged it on top of the slices of bread.  I made sure and got a scoop or two fo those yummy onions from the soup onto the sandwich's as well.  Top them with a handful of shredded cheese, place them on the same cookie-sheet with the bowls of soup.  NOW we are ready to put them all in the oven and toast away. 


Please stop by the following posts to check out more Fabulous Fall Foods.  Say hi to the cook you find there.  She'll appreciate it!

If you would like to join in, just leave a comment here telling me that you've put up a Fall food post on your blog.  I'll pop over and add a link for you here.  Every time you join in gets your name in the pot for a drawing for Gooseberry Patches cookbook, Harvest Home.  You know you want it...

Thursday, October 07, 2010

Fabulous Fall Foods - Week 3

When the smell of Autumn is in the air and bags of candy corn begin to fill the shelves at the local supermarkets, a special harvest-time trail mix is the perfect munchy for all kinds of get-togethers.  Have the girls over to make super cute fabric pumpkins, gather the kids around the table for a rousing game of scrabble or take this mix along to your small town homecoming football game or on a hike through the deep woods to see some beautiful fall foliage.  No matter the occassion, Harvest Trail Mix is a great take along.  The candy corn ads just the right amount of Halloween color.

Harvest Trail Mix

1 - 10-1/2 oz. box of Honey Nut Corn Chex
1 - 8 oz. bag of Harvest-colored M&M's
1 - 8 oz. bag of candy corn
1 - 9 oz. package of raisins
1 - 12 oz. jar of dry-roasted peanuts

Mix all together and Enjoy! 
(Store in an airtight container)

For your chance to win a copy of the Gooseberry Patch cookbook, Homemade Harvest, post a fall-inspired recipe to your blog, then make sure and come back here to leave a comment and let me know that your recipe is posted.  You have until Wednesday of the coming week to post.  Each week that you join in gives you another chance in the drawing and gives all of us another fantastic recipe to try!

I'd also like to know if you've tried any of the recipe's that have been posted and how you liked them.  We would all like to know!

For previous weeks recipes, follow the links below:

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Look here for this weeks Fabulous Fall Food recipes

Turn the Page Tuesday

He-the Monster-is now dating someone whose name begins with "L".  I think her name is Lola or maybe, possibly Lolita.  (Tiptoeing off the tongue.  How lovely.  Lovely Lola Lolita.)  The Monster, everyone says, is much better now.  He doesn't drink (I'm not around) and he doesn't smoke (I'm not around) and he doesn't stay out all night and ring "L's" doorbell at four thirty in the morning (drunk and smoky).  He's older, wiser, and unwilling to go backward into that great abyss that reads me.

This is the first paragraph of Cranberry Queen by Kathleen DeMarco.  'Tis the season for cranberry harvest, so I thought it was an appropriate read for October's Turn the Page Tuesday.  As you see, the book opens with Diana Moore thinking about her ex-boyfriend, dubbed the Monster.  Diana is in her mid-thirties, works for an internet company, lives in New York City and seems to be on top of the world, except for her broken heart.  In the opening chapter, Diana is reflecting on the next day.  She will be headed to a friends wedding, where she is very likely to run into the Monster and "L". 

"According to my Aunt Margaret, I'm set to have the best three years of my life.  This is especially fortuitous, because I have the biggest day of my life tomorrow.  Tomorrow, I go to a wedding where the Monster will be.  With L.  And I have summoned up all of my astrological and emotional and physical strength to attend this wedding of my incourteous friends, Maria and Michael, who have invited the Monster, feeling it better to propel me head-first into Engaging in Live, Part Two, by Getting Rid of the Past."

Like life tends to do, just when Diana thinks her Biggest Day is tomorrow, fate shows her what Biggest Day really means.  The following day, instead of facing her ex, Diana faces something so much bigger;  the death of her parents and brother in a car accident.  In the weeks that follow, Diana trys to deal with this terrible loss.  One day, trying to get away from the cloying sympathy of her friends, she heads out of New York City and into rural New Jersey.  Here, where no one knows her story, maybe Diana can start the healing process.

I really enjoyed this book.  It is the first novel from the author, but she is an accomplished screenwriter and since the release of Cranberry Queen, has written several other novels.  She writes about this heavy topic with lightness and humour.  I laughed out loud as well as wiped away a tear or two and thoroughly enjoyed it.

One of my favorite witty passages in the book is when Diana and her new friend, Louisa, are sitting under the stars sharing a bottle or two of wine.  Louisa is about to tell Diana something personal and Diana, afraid to swap secrets, tries to distract her.

"Hey," I say.  "Look up."  She does.  "Now make a wish."
Louisa glares at me.  "I'm saying something important."
"I know", I insist.  "So make a wish."  Sober or not, I'm a very superstitious person.  I should know better;  I must have wished seven trillion times that the Monster would stay with me, that he was being honest when he said he cared about me.  Wrong, wrong, wrong and yet here I am, promoting my fair-weather friends from up above.  I should have wished for a meat cleaver.  That I could have used.

Cracked me up.  Several times since I read this book I've thought to myself, "Dang, I should have wished for a meat cleaver." 

Pop over to Adrienne's Some of a Kind for more Turn the Page Tuesday reviews.

Friday, October 01, 2010

Fabulous Fall Foods Friday - Week 2

One of the most amazing chef's in the world was in my kitchen last Sunday morning helping me make breakfast.  He measured, poured and stirred, whipping up an incredible fall delight.
It was the perfect beginning of a scrumptious fall day spent at the pumpkin patch and corn maze.
These pancakes were wonderful, gobbled up so quickly that I came very near to not getting a picture of them. 
Pumpkin Pancakes

2 cups flour
4 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1/4 tsp. allspice
3/4 cup sugar
1-1/2 cups solid pack pumpkin
3 eggs
1 cup milk
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 tsp. vanilla
4 oz. chopped pecans

Sift dry ingrediants in a medium bowl and set aside.   In a large bowl combine pumpkin, eggs, milk, oil and vanilla.  Add dry ingrediants and stir until blended.  Mix in pecans.

Cook on a hot greased griddle until bubbles form and bottom is brown.  Flip.  I always put a dab of butter on each pancake after I turn them and before taking them off the griddle.  Just makes them yummy.    Serve with warm cinnamon maple syrup. 

Make sure you follow the links below to see other Fabulous Fall Foods. 
If you would like to join in and have a chance to win the Gooseberry cookbook "Homemade Harvest", just leave me a comment on this post letting me know that you've posted your recipe to your blog and I will put a link below to your post.  You have until Wednesday to enter this weeks recipe.  Each week that you join in gives you a "ticket" in the drawing pot.  I would love to have you join us!
                            Pop over here to see the links for week 1's recipe's.