Autumn Recipes

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My 15 Best Pumpkin Recipes Recipe

My 15 Best Pumpkin Recipes

10.07.14 by Jackie

I haven't never taken baby Aria to a pumpkin patch yet. I'm planning on taking her soon. I'm sure she will enjoy the scent of fresh straw and the endless plot of pumpkins. I wonder what type of pumpkin she will select. We'll probably pick many so we can turn them into delicious fresh pies, pancakes and sweet bread for the upcoming holidays. In the meantime, I've gathered a list of savory dishes flavored with the deep-orange squash plant. I hope you will find plenty of inspiration in this post. 


I hope Aria has a lot of fun. I heard our local pumpkin patch has an inflatable bounce house and slide; that alone will probably amaze her. Even though the weather seems very warm these days in the Bay Area, summer is gone and fall is definitely in the air. 

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Oven Roasted Tomato Risotto Recipe Recipe

The summer weather in the Bay Area hasn't been so great this year, and on top of that, an infestation of gophers in our garden forced us to grow fewer tomatoes in small planters this year. Not only are there fewer varieties, but because of the lack of heat the plants have not been all that prolific. I gathered a couple of handfuls of the few ripe cherry tomatoes I could find and I was determined to do something special with them.

To start, I slowly roasted them in the oven. I could have stopped there and just served them in a salad, but I opted to make my husband's favorite comfort food: risotto. Risotto is extraordinarily versatile (I've developed multiple variations) and perfect for any occasion. For this version, I used Carnaroli rice, which holds its shape better than Arborio rice. For a bit more texture, I mixed in melon-seed macaroni (similar rice-shaped pasta). The combination has a creamy mouthfeel, so no heavy cream is necessary. I colored the dish with sharp yellow Cheddar cheese and served it to all the vegetarians in the house. I think it ended up being a perfect send off for the fruits of our labor.


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Tomato Risotto Recipe Recipe

Tomato Risotto Recipe

12.21.10 by Jackie

This version of tomato risotto has a decidedly Indian sensibility. I flavored the rice with tomato chutney as I recently did with an Indian-inspired asparagus pie. The flavors from the chutney are so bold that no other spices and very little salt are needed. I just added chopped sun-dried tomatoes as garnish.

Making risotto takes a little bit of practice to begin with, but once you've worked on your fundamentals, you can start to use the basic recipe and create dozens of different variations. I've stuffed artichokes with risotto, paired pistachio pesto with celery risotto, stuffed it in zucchini flowers, made a roasted beet and ricotta cheese version, and also a rather unconventional risotto with bamboo; the list of adaptations is truly endless.


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Caramelized Fuyu Persimmons Recipe

Caramelized Fuyu Persimmons

12.13.09 by Jackie

Fuyu persimmons are a nice substitute for Granny Smith apples in side dishes. I love caramelizing persimmons and pairing them with roasted duck breast. I don't think a holiday dinner menu can get much more fancy or decadent. We've just had our first crop of Fuyu persimmons this season in our garden, and I decided to take full advantage.

In case you were wondering, there are 2 main varieties of persimmons, Fuyu and Hachiya. The difference is the texture. For this recipe make sure you use Fuyu persimmons, which have are hard, almost carrot-like texture.


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Sweet Potato Pie with Pecan Crumb Topping Recipe

Sweet potato pie is a classic American dessert that is not overly sweet. The texture is similar to a pumpkin pie, but firmer. I jazzed mine up with a little anise extract, other flavorings and a crown of pecan crumb topping. It's a great pie for Thanksgiving, but really, you can enjoy it any time of the year.

I made this for a reader named Bill who e-mailed me a request for a sweet potato pie recipe. If you're reading Bill, I hope you like it!


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