Fall is the season when I cook the most. With a crisp chill in the air, nesting instincts set in. Maple, pumpkin, apples, pears, squashes of all kinds, sweet potato and brussel sprouts are all in heavy rotation. The house fills with enticing aromas drawing family and friends around the table. Here is a compilation of 21 favorite recipes from appetizers, salads, main dishes and desserts to celebrate the flavors of fall.
It’s happened again. I throw together a fruit salad and someone begs me for the recipe. Truth is I really just make fruit salads up from whatever is in season at the market. That is the key: seasonal produce. In this salad, I started with a ripe, juicy pear, cored, peel on, in the bottom of a pretty serving bowl. On top of that went pieces of a sweet and juicy navel orange to keep the pear from browning. Then a surprise element: 3 ripe Italian prunes, pitted and sliced. Crunchy black seedless grape halves and pomegranate seeds next. Gorgeous plump blackberries and raspberries on top. The magic happens with what comes next: zest of a lime, splash of orange juice, splash of maple syrup and a chiffonade of fresh mint leaves. A quick toss and voilà! Autumn fruit salad. Dig in!
At a recent breakfast meeting I hosted, I was asked how I had made the fruit salad I served. There were flavors guests just couldn’t put their fingers on but raved about. Recipes for my fuit salads are often requested and the truth is I just create them as I go. I can, however, share my method. I always strive for something unexpected and not the “same old same old” fruit salad that turns up on most buffet tables. I think it is important to select fruit that is seasonal when possible and think of the colors and textures of the fruit in the salad. Avoid the usual strawberries when they are pale, cardboard like and tasteless. The plethora of fruit combinations is endless. This salad showcased ripe Bosc pears, papaya, seedless Concord grapes, clementines, mango, kiwi, raspberries, pomegranate seeds and mint from my garden. Continue reading