Thanksgiving is just over a week away!  Here’s a few of our family’s favorite recipes you want to make sure not to forget! How to High Heat Roast a Turkey Perfect Pie Crust Chocolate Pecan Tart Deep Dish Sweet Potato Pecan Pie Healthy Green Bean Casserole Three Cheese Twice Baked Cauliflower Casserole Spiced Apple Cider in the Crock Pot and for something light, bright, and seasonal, try my Avocado & Grapefruit Salad with Toasted Walnuts And, if this is your first time hosting Thanksgiving dinner, check out my Thanksgiving prep schedule! And for the leftovers?  May I suggest trying out my Buffalo Chicken (Turkey?) Dip for football watching over the weekend, which goes great with Three Cheese Fondue with Caramelized Onions, or for a healthier treat, try Green Chile Turkey [... To read more, click here ...]

 November 14, 2012  Posted by Heartland Renaissance Autumn, Winter 2 Responses »
 

You know what’s great about buying organic produce? The ability to save the seeds and know that they are going to grow.  Especially when buying varieties that might not be commonly grown in your area and the seed is not as available. Recently I picked up an organic Red Kuri Squash at our local Whole Foods. In France, Red Kuri Squash is is called potimarron – poti for pumpkin (potiron) and Marron for chestnut.  When cooked, Red Kuri Squash tastes like a pleasant combination of the two.  What’s especially neat about the Red Kuri Squash is that the skin is edible.  No having to roast the squash first then spoon out it’s inner from it’s shell, no having to meticulously peel thick skin (I’m talking to you, butternut squash) with [... To read more, click here ...]

 November 12, 2012  Posted by Heartland Renaissance Autumn, One-Pot Meals and Soups Comments Off
 

I confess, I never really liked pecan pie. Something about the gooey, gelatinous interior contrasting with the tooth-shattering pecan crust, , was just unpalatable to me. I finally gave in to pecan pie love at a barbecue joint in southern Texas, and was smitten. Rich with pecans with a slightly softer crust, it was perfect topped with some bourbon laced whipped cream (and shared with a certain someone who I’d eventually marry!). Then, once I made one for myself, after discovering pecan pie nirvana, I wasn’t too comfortable with the inevitable use of corn syrup in most recipes.

I’ve made a variation of this recipe every year, once a year, for my chocolate-loving husband on Thanksgiving. Each year has been a little different as I’ve worked on making it mine, and it’s only been this year (last week, actually!) that I finally hit my stride with a recipe I wanted to keep, turning it from a too-rich pie into an elegantly thin tart, perfecting the baking technique, and real-foodifying it just a little bit through using more natural sugars and nixing the corn syrup.

Don’t expect health food, however. It is a chocolate pecan tart, after all. An indulgence.

Just a sliver of it will suffice. Rich, deep chocolate with a crunch of sweet pecans. Perfect.

 November 29, 2010  Posted by Heartland Renaissance Autumn, Baking, Desserts 7 Responses »
Nov 292010
 

Pie Crust.

I’ve made them all. Recipes with a touch of vinegar or vodka. Recipes with a precise blend of cold butter to cold lard. Recipes with yogurt, whole wheat flour, sugar, no sugar, with an egg, flour kept in the freezer first. . . the list goes on.

But for the past two years I’ve made the same recipe. I’ve found a winner. And, though I briefly mentioned it last year in a guest post, I decided that once and for all, I had to share it here.

The Perfect Pastry Dough.

According to me. . . .

 November 29, 2010  Posted by Heartland Renaissance Autumn, Baking, Desserts, Winter 3 Responses »
 

Who doesn’t adore a steamy mug of hot chocolate?

It warms ones soul; starting from my fingers encircling the mug, both hands, if the opportunity arises, all the way on down to the belly. Instant comfort, instant calm, and immediate bolstering on a crisp, winter day.

 November 22, 2010  Posted by Heartland Renaissance Autumn, Beverages, Winter 11 Responses »
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