My grandpa loved this soup. It's one of the few things I can remember making for him that he loved. The other is my lemon lavender cheesecake- that he adored. It's so heartbreaking how we have these people in our lives & we share memories with them, we cook for them (that's how I love people the best) and then one day they're gone. And for the life of me I can't remember certain things like which of the foods I cooked for him that he loved the most. I only remember those two... So for now I hold on to these things, these memories. I know it's so cliche but find out the details while you still can because when someone is gone, they're gone. And it can happen just like that...and you can be clinging to winter squash & apple soup and lemon lavender cheesecake, wishing for more.
It's really hard to try to stay in shape when dessert is always tempting me! I decided no matter what I'm going to make the best decisions I can when it comes to my food, which means tweaking recipes to fit my needs when I have people over for dinner. I made a no to low, depending on preference, added sugar apple pie like crumble and I was so impressed! Everyone loved it and I didn't have to feel guilty about betraying my health goals! Win-win if I do say so myself. I know, the picture does not do it justice.
I grew up eating my grandmother's simple cakes that she would make with with whatever seasonal fruit was available, usually plum, or cherry, or apple, or pear. This cake wasn't any typical American cake though, it was fruit that was baked into a sweet vanilla base. Sometimes she'd bake it in traditional cake fashion (like this one), but often times she would bake it in a shallow dish, with the fruit lined at the bottom of the dish and "dotted" with the cake, as it cooked the cake would fill into the crevices of the fruit and hold it all together. They were always delicious, no matter what fruit she used, and would go perfectly with a cup of fresh mint tea from the garden. When I think of the perfect dessert, I think of things like this- simple recipes that remind me of my grandmother's cooking, of her French and Italian heritage. I feel so honored to have witnessed her in the kitchen growing up, there was something so intuitive about the way she approached food, and thinking about these dishes connects me to her in ways I can't explain. So this one is for my grandma, Mimi, a cake inspired by my childhood. Oh and it would seriously be perfect for any occasion but especially Thanksgiving or Christmas.
This is pretty much a non-recipe, which is basically the best type of recipe there is! Got apples? A crock-pot? Then you can make homemade, delicious and preservative free apple sauce! (I'm sure if you don't have a crock-pot you can just use the stove top, but then you have to linger around the kitchen to assure you don't burn the place down..)
I made this apple crisp for Marc once when we first started dating and he loved it so much that he would request it often. I sent him over the recipe and he's since made it for his mom and me on numerous occasions. My apple crisp has been passed around from kitchen to kitchen and it makes me so happy- hopefully it will grace your kitchen too!
Many people know autumn has officially arrived because Starbucks has rolled out it's signature Pumpkin Spice Latte (which are not dairy-free by the way- don't get too excited).
Others know it's officially autumn because the calender has said so.
Autumn means my social media sites become inundated with pictures of my best girlfriends gallivanting through pear and apple groves, snapping the most adorable pictures with their boyfriends, husbands and loved ones standing next to trees with pounds of fruit hanging off them. They're posting pictures of overfilled baskets of hand picked apples and pears with captions that make my heart ache with envy. I want to go gallivanting through apple and pear orchards, pick my own fruit, and post adorable pictures too! Oh, life can be so cruel.
Instead I got a box of pears (picked by someone else, mind you) delivered to my front door by my lovely CSA. This is how I knew it was officially autumn, le sigh.
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