Summer is over and fall is finally here. Even if you weren’t looking forward to the end of the warm season, there are more than a few reasons why I love fall. From orange and yellow leaves and pumpkin patches, to being able to dig out my favourite pairs of boots – fall is something I look forward to after months in flip flops and shorts.
Fall is also a great time to get back into the kitchen, and I find it’s when I go for comfort recipes the most. Chicken pot pie, meat loaf, and mashed potatoes – all of these favourites I’ve stopped making since last winter make a reappearance in the fall, and everyone is happier for it.
The air outside is crisp and cool, so if you’re in the mood to warm up in the kitchen with some fall recipes, here are a few great comfort foods you can try this weekend:
If you like Eggs Benedict and a side of waffles, why not try combining them? This southern classic is one of my favourite comfort breakfasts, and I’ve never had anyone say no to trying it.
2 cups all-purpose baking mix (Bisquick)
1 1/3 cups buttermilk
1/2 cup (2 oz.) shredded Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons vegetable oil $
5 large eggs, divided $
1/2 teaspoon white vinegar
1 (0.9-oz.) envelope hollandaise sauce mix (or use your favourite recipe)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon dried tarragon
8 thin prosciutto slices (about 1/4 lb.)
Garnish: chopped fresh chives
Stir together baking mix, next 3 ingredients, and 1 egg in a medium bowl until blended. Let batter stand 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, add water to a depth of 3 inches in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil; reduce heat, and maintain a light simmer. Add vinegar. Break remaining 4 eggs, and slip into water, 1 at a time, as close as possible to surface. Simmer 3 to 5 minutes or to desired degree of doneness. Remove with a slotted spoon. Trim edges, if desired.
Cook batter in a preheated, lightly greased waffle iron according to manufacturer’s directions until golden.
Prepare hollandaise sauce according to package directions, adding lemon juice and tarragon.
Stack 2 waffles, and top with 2 prosciutto slices, 1 poached egg, and desired amount of hollandaise sauce. Garnish, if desired.
Baked Potato Soup
Nothing says lunch like a bowl of steaming hot soup. Baked potato soup is great in a homemade sourdough bread bowl or just on it’s own with croutons.
1/4 cup butter
1/2 cup chopped sweet onion
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 extra-large chicken bouillon cube
1 (24-oz.) package frozen steam-and-mash potatoes
2 cups milk
1/2 teaspoon pepper
Toppings: cooked and crumbled bacon, shredded sharp Cheddar cheese, sliced green onions
Melt butter in a Dutch oven over medium heat; add onion and garlic, and cook, stirring often, 5 to 10 minutes or until golden.
Sprinkle onion mixture with flour, and stir until coated. Stir in bouillon cube and 3 cups water. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring often. Reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer, stirring occasionally, 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, microwave potatoes according to package directions. (Do not add butter or milk.) Stir potatoes, milk, and pepper into onion mixture. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, 10 minutes or until thickened. Serve with desired toppings.
Looking for a quick dinner for the family or fast comfort food? Look no further than Chicken Tetrazzini. It’s a great meal to whip up for two or a small crowd.
1/2 cup butter or margarine
1/2 medium-size sweet onion, diced
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
4 cups milk
1/2 cup dry white wine
2 tablespoons chicken bouillon granules
1 teaspoon seasoned pepper
1 1/2 cups freshly grated Parmesan cheese, divided
4 cups diced cooked chicken
12 ounces vermicelli, cooked
1 (6-ounce) jar sliced mushrooms, drained
1 cup soft breadcrumbs
2 tablespoons butter or margarine, melted
Melt 1/2 cup butter in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat; add diced onion, and sauté 5 minutes or until tender.
Whisk in flour until smooth, and cook, whisking constantly, 1 minute. Gradually add milk and wine; cook, whisking constantly, 5 to 6 minutes or until thickened.
Add bouillon granules, seasoned pepper, and 1 cup cheese. Cook, whisking constantly, 1 minute or until bouillon granules dissolve and cheese melts. Remove from heat. Stir in chicken, pasta, and mushrooms. Spoon into a lightly greased 13- x 9-inch baking dish.
Bake chicken mixture, covered, at 350° for 20 minutes.
Stir together remaining 1/2 cup cheese, breadcrumbs, and 2 tablespoons melted butter, and sprinkle evenly over casserole. Bake casserole 10 to 15 more minutes.
Mason Jar Pumpkin Cupcakes
From Sheknows.com, this is my favourite pumpkin cupcake recipe (for my favourite pumpkin spice recipes, take a look at my pumpkin spice post). Because you bake them right in the mason jar, they are easy to transport for school parties or fall Sunday dinners.
1 cup all-purpose flour
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Spray 18 (4 ounce) Mason jars with nonstick cooking spray. If you do not have Mason jars, simply line cupcake tray with cupcake liners.
Whisk together all-purpose flour, white whole wheat flour, baking powder, baking soda, kosher salt, cinnamon, ginger, cloves and nutmeg. Set aside.
In a large bowl mix together dark brown sugar, white sugar, melted butter and eggs. Add in dry ingredients and mix until combined. Mix in pumpkin puree and stir until completely combined.
Fill Mason jars a little over half full and bake for 20-25 minutes until the top of your cupcakes spring back and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Let cupcakes cool and top with clove-spiced cream cheese frosting.
It might not be that warm outside, but just try one of these recipes and you’ll warm up in no time. Here are a few of my favourite kitchent tools for cooking fall recipes:
Casseroles are a comfort food favourite, so make sure you have a good casserole dish on hand.
Take up a new hobby this fall – cake decorating is fun and delicious
Breads and buns are a must in the fall, so bake some up in handy bread and loaf pans.