If you haven’t figured it out by now, the sisters of TSP are gaga over anything fall. For me, what excites me most about the arrival of autumn, is the produce and all of the savory dishes that come along with the season. This time of year means crock pot meals and slow cooking Sundays, chock full of every kind of hearty delicious, fall vegetable I can get my eighty year old hands on. OMG! I love this weather! It inspires me to cook! Here are some variations of some ditties I have been making up in my kitchen for as long as I can remember. Cheers to the crisp fall air and home cooked comfort meals! Enjoy.
Zupa Toscana is off the hook. This is an absolute favorite soup of mine and I have to say, no matter how much I make, it never lasts the day. Now that is telling you something. I only manage to make it about one time a year because it does take a bit more time in the prep department and if you are counting calories, it is a tad on the indulgent side. However, an annual pot of this creamy, hearty soup is totally acceptable. This particular recipe is Paleo, if that tickles your fancy. If not, trade the coconut milk for cream and enjoy!
Shepherd’s Pie was a staple in my house growing up. It was a fan favorite and my momma needed to feed the masses. I am excited however to give this version a whirl as I have never even considered busting it out in my ole cast iron skillet. I love me some cooking in that thing. I also like the idea that this meal can be made all sorts of different ways, depending on what you have on hand.
Once a week we have a pasta dish in the rotation. Summer pestos along with light and fresh tomato sauce, quickly get replaced with one very rich, very creamy, and very comforting pasta Bolognese. If you happen to have the Joy of Cooking cookbook handy, then go grab it, dust of the cobwebs and search the index for Pasta Bolognese. If you don’t, you should purchase it. I was lucky enough to get it as a gift from a dear friend for my wedding shower and I think it may be the most used item I received. I refer to it weekly.
Turkey Black Bean Chili with Sweet Potatoes
Turkey black bean chili with sweet potatoes. Ever had it? Holy friggin yum. I make this recipe constantly over the course of the cold season. I like to top mine off with whatever hot sauce looks interesting to give it an extra added kick. If you have Gwyneth Paltrow’s, It’s All Good cookbook, she has my favorite version of this recipe. Another option would be the meatless route.
If there is one meal that reminds me of my grandma, it is stuffed cabbage. I remember walking into her home 100 times over with the smell of this in the background. To me there is nothing more comforting than a little meat pouch wrapped ever so neatly in a cabbage leaf, slow cooked in a tomato sauce and then finished off with a dollop of sour cream. Don’t be scared. These little guys are as easy as pie to make and a process I actually quite enjoy. The finish product is worth it!
So, this post is definitely a little heavy on the ground meat. Lauren is giving me a complex as she is not a gigantic fan. However, it is autumn and in the old days, this was the time of year when animals where slaughtered and meat became a bigger part of the diet as the cold set in. It is all about the cycle and the seasons. Say goodbye to meals loaded with leafy greens and salad style meals. Say hello to soups and stews and meals that will heat your belly from the inside up! Happy cooking!
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