Posts Tagged ‘Fall’

I’ve been invited to the Thanksgiving luncheon at my previous employer and must find a dish to bring. I always like to include something a little different while the SC natives tend to their traditions. usually bring something New Englandish. Last year it was mashed potatoes and gravy. Would you believe mashed potatoes are not on their ‘must do’ list! I guess this is rice country along the coast and rice is a mainstay of a meal. I’m sure there will be collards and macaroni and cheese. Deviled eggs always attend the party as does sweet potato casserole. The dessert table will be crammed with goodies, and people to full of dinner to really get into most of them. They’ll all strike around 3:00 break time for coffee and whatever is left of the cakes, cookies and pies.
Since I retired 4 yrs ago, It’s always fun visiting with the old crew, seeing their wives and children (all grown up). So what to bring……

Pre-Thanksgiving Spread (That’s my Waldorf in the front corner next to the eggs)

I decided on my twist of a Waldorf Salad

Waldorf Salad Upgraded

9 apples unpeeled but cored and diced (I used a variety of MacIntosh, Granny Smith, and Gala so to have different textures, color and sweet / tart)
2 stalks Celery finely sliced
1/2 Cup Mayonnaise
1/2 Cup Heavy Cream whipped
1/2 Cup Pomegranate Craisins (pomegranite seeds might be nice instead)
1/2 Cup Maple sugared walnuts (see recipe)
1/16 teas Chinese Five Spice powder
sprinkle of ground ginger
sprinkle of ground cardamon

Whip cream and set aside. Blend mayonnaise with spices. Add celery and craisins to diced apples in bowl. Stir in Mayonnaise mixture. Fold whipped cream into apple mixture. Refrigerate. Prepare Walnuts.

Maple Glazed Walnuts with Cayenne
adapted from recipe by fifteenspatulas

3 Tbl maple syrup
sprinkle of cayenne
sprinkle of salt

Heat a skillet to hot. Add walnuts and toast until nuts are heated thru and piping hot. Sprinkle with a good dose of cayenne and salt. Slowly pour syrup in side of skillet (carefully as it will bubble up and spit) Stir nuts around until coated. Remove from heat. Set aside to cool completely. When completely cool, scatter over apples in bowl. Toss walnuts with apples just before serving.

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Yesterday was a day in the kitchen with all my favorite smells. First was Indian pudding made the true New England way with stone ground cornmeal from a bag I got at Grays in Little Compton, RI. I covet that bag because the mill just shut down after 370 yrs.

Next on my kitchen duties was a recipe I found online for Spiced Pumpkin Bread. The two loaves look so beautiful and the smell while they baked was simply Autumn. I will breakfast on one loaf this week and I’ll share the other with my daughter and granddaughter.

Finally I made a Maine Lobster Pie with the luscious lobster we found on sale this week at Kroger. At 6.99 a pound, we had to buy a couple. Normally lobsters in SC cost twice that. Simple recipe:
Meat from 2 cooked lobsters placed in casserole. Drizzle with melted butter. Pour in one to two cups of half and half, just enough to come up about halfway up the lobster meat. Mix crushed sleeve of Ritz crackers with two tablespoons of melted butter, sprinkle in parsley and a bit of garlic powder. Load cracker mixture over lobster pressing down so it absorbs some of the milk, then bake at 350 degrees until nicely browned and bubbly. Yum. Np pictures because it disappeared too fast

Today I continued my kitchen blitz with some jam/jelly recipes I found online. First was Banana Butter with Pumpkin Pie Spice I adapted from http://www.seriouseats.com as seen on Yummy. The other was an adaptation of Apple Pie Jam from Taste of Home Canning magazine. I adjusted each recipe to use little to low sugar and low sugar pectin. Also I included a bit of my new favorite spice Cardamon.

Tomorrow someone gets to cook for me as I will attend a retiree brunch from my previous employer.

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I long for reds and gold and orange
cinnamon and nutmeg in the air
a brisk walk under flaming trees
a thick irish knit sweater to wear

I miss the sound of falling leaves
in the silence of early morning
the crisp bite of a just picked macintosh
the fireplace embers bright and warming

I yearn for the acrid smoke of a bonfire
sweet pie pumpkins from the country store
gathered on a leisurely Sunday drive
and long mountain paths to explore

my windows open and curtains flapping
a breath of cool fresh air
soup in the kitchen
enough for an army to share

Saturday afternoon football games
rivals since long ago
a country inn a covered bridge
Oh New England I miss you so

hot apple cider and maple candy
and an icey cold mountain stream
it’s that time of year that I think of home
and its of New England I dream.

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