Autumn is here with it’s leaf-colored pageantry. Traditionally this is a time for putting back pigs in the smokehouse, harvesting maple sap for syrup, and more recently for indulging in the pumpkin-spice madness that has gripped the nation.
Maple Candied Bacon
Prep Time: 10 min
Bake time: 10 min at 400F
Servings: about 6
1-12oz package of bacon, thickness as desired
6 oz pure maple syrup
Lay bacon out in a single layer on parchment paper covered cookie sheet. Bake at 400F until it begins to brown.
Remove from oven and brush with maple syrup, flip and brush the other side.
Return to oven until bacon reaches desired crispness and safe internal temperature.
Cool slightly on a wire rack to allow sugars to begin to harden.
Serve warm. Refigerate any leftovers.
Roast Chicken Baskets
Prep Time: 20 minutes
cook Time: 12-15 minutes at 375F
12-16 ounces roast chicken, shredded or diced
phyllo ro wanton wrappers
1/2 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp olive oil
6 oz sweet corn, whole kernel
6 oz black beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 each yellow and red bell pepper, diced
1 small sweet onion, diced
If using phyllo, cut into 6×6″ squares to fit standard 12-cup muffin tins, or size to fit the muffin cups you are using. Line greased muffin tins with phyllo or wonton wrappers to create a cup for filling.
In a skillet, add olive oil, garlic, and onion. Saute until onion begins to clarify. Add diced peppers and continue to cook until slightly softened. Add corn and beans and allow entire mixture to heat through.
Spoon in generous portions of chicken and vegetable mixture into the dough cups, and top with shredded cheese. Bake at 375F for 12-15 mintues, until cheese is melted and edges of dough are golden.
Serve warm, and refigerate any leftovers.
Fall Flavors Salad
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Servings: as needed
The prep time for this recipe can vary depending on whether you are using leftovers as ingredients, or cooking them up fresh. Likewise, the number of servings are up to your needs
Acorn squash, sliced and baked or pan fried with salt and pepper
Radish, thinly sliced
Toasted pumpkin seeds
Baby lettuces including red-leaf, arugala, and spinach, as desired
Vinaigrette of choice
Pumpkin seeds and squash should be warm when added. Toss the salad ingredients with vinagrette and top with croutons. The flavors and colors are all reminiscent of autumn and present a warmth both visual and for the palate for cooler days.
Mini Mushroom Pizzas
Prep Time: 15 mintues
Bake time: 15-20 minutes at 350F
12 large button mushrooms, cleaned and de-stemmed
6 oz pasta or pizza sauce
8 oz shredded mozarella
2 oz shredded Parmesan
4 oz mini or sliced pepperoni
Spray baking dish with olive oil or other non-stick spray.
Arrange mushroom caps gill side up in baking dish. Spoon in some sauce and fill with shredded cheeses. Top with pepperoni. Bake at 350F for 15-20 minutes, until cheese are nicely melted.
Serve hot with a garnish of fresh basil. Refrigerate any leftovers.
Spicy Shrimp Sliders
Prep Time:20 minutes
1# shrinp, cleaned and cooked
1 package split buns, mini rolls or mini pita
1 tsp olive oil
Garlic, salt and pepper to taste
Ranch or traditional cole slaw
Blue cheese crumbles
Heat shrimp in a skillet with a little olive oil and garlic. Toss them in your favorite hot-wing sauce.
Place a few shrinp, a tablespoon of slaw, and few blue cheese crumbles onto the bred ofchoice to create spicy shrimp sliders. Serve while warm.
Finally, a reminder that soups and stews are great for fall meals. To give your favorite recipe a twist, add a quarter cup of strong brewed coffee and a pinch or two of ancho chili powder. They work togther to add a subtle smokiness and accentuate the flavor of the meats.