Romantic Recipes for Fall

3 comments

Autumn weather provides the perfect opportunity for an at-home date. Cozy and intimate, a dinner date at home – done right – can score you just as many Brownie points as the fanciest date at an expensive restaurant.

To get it right, plan ahead. Write down the recipes, make a list of groceries and head to the grocery store at least a day before your date. Bake in advance and don’t leave the chopping until the last minute. Start preparing your dinner at least an hour before your lady is set to arrive.

Ready to make a three course dinner she won’t soon forget? Dust off your apron, schedule some prep time, and tell your girl to get ready for an autumn feast.

Appetizer

Spicy Chai Pumpkin Soup, inspired by Food and Wine

You’ll need:

  • 1 medium pumpkin, whole (3-4 pounds)
  • 6 cups chicken stock
  • 1/2 cup chai tea
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • parsley, for garnishing optional: sour cream for drizzling

Preheat your oven to 350°F

Start by roasting your pumpkin. First, cut it in half and scoop out the nasty bits. Once the seeds and stringy stuff are all out, place your pumpkin face-down on a baking sheet and pour about 1/3 cup water over the pumpkin halves. Bake for one hour or until the edges of the pumpkin skin start to darken and separate from the pumpkin flesh. Allow to cool, then scoop out the flesh and set aside in a large bowl.

TIP: Do this first step in advance. If you have time during the afternoon or day before, get on it!

Next, sit a large pot over medium heat and drizzle in the olive oil. Once the oil is hot, add the chopped onion and garlic. Allow to simmer until the onion is clear and the edges of your garlic start to brown slightly.

While you’re waiting for your garlic and onion to cook, make a cup of chai tea, either by steeping a tea bag or by diffusing loose leaf tea. Set aside.

In the large pot, add your tea, stock and pumpkin. Simmer for ten minutes on low heat.

Puree your soup in the blender. You may have to do this in several batches. Once smooth, transfer to your soup bowls. Add your parsley, salt and pepper, and optional sour cream.

Dinner

Image source


Brie, Pear and Pecan Salad, inspired by my mother’s recipe.

You’ll need:

  • 1 bag/bunch arugula, washed
  • 1 large pear, cored and sliced
  • 1 small wheel of brie
  • 2 Tbsp. maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup pecans
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 shallot, chopped
  • 1 tsp. balsamic vinegar

Preheat your oven to 350°F

Place your brie wheel on a baking sheet. Cook for ten minutes, or until little cheese bubbles start to seep out of the bottom of the cheese. While you’re waiting for it to cook, start on the next steps. When the brie is done, cut it into quarters.

In a medium saucepan, heat your olive oil. Next, add your chopped shallots and simmer until tender and slightly browned. Reduce the heat to low-medium, add your maple syrup and balsamic, then stir. Add your sliced pears and pecans, flip often, and cook for about 3 minutes. Remove your pears and pecans.

Put your arugula in a large mixing bowl, and pour most of the hot oil/maple/balsamic mixture over top. Mix quickly and thoroughly.

On a plate, put your dressed arugula down first. Then, place a quarter wheel of brie in the middle of your salad. Finally, add your pears and pecans and give a light drizzle of your remaining oil/maple/balsamic mixture over the whole plate.

Dessert

Apple Crisp, inspired by Moms Who Think

You’ll need:

  • 5 apples (preferably gala or macintosh), peeled and sliced
  • 1 cup oats, uncooked
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • cinnamon to taste

Preheat your oven to 350°F

Melt your butter over low heat, until no chunks remain. In a large mixing bowl, combine oats, butter, brown sugar, flour and and salt. Stir together until thoroughly mixed. Set aside.

Line the bottom of an 8 x 8 glass baking dish (or casserole dish) with your apple slices. Pour your maple syrup over the apples, then sprinkle cinnamon overtop. Next, sprinkle your oat mixture overtop, making sure to evenly coat the layer of apples.

Bake for 30 minutes, or until the edges of your crisp start to brown.

 

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