Friday, September 5, 2014

Heaven is Fall Color, Rain and Food

I noticed it last weekend. . .a few trees on the back roads home were randomly dotted with reds and yellows - this week there are even more turning colors.  The mountain peaks are totally bare, which only comes at the end of the summer and is short lived, as snow has already fallen above 12,000 feet.  The light has definitely changed.  When I get up in the morning it's dark and I'm turning on lights earlier in the evening now.  The air is cooler.  Even on the warmer days, if there's a breeze, it has that edge of cool to it.  I'm turning on the oven without fear of self-combustion.  And today, it's cloudy and misty.  It's the time of year where I want to do everything and nothing at the same time.  OMG, it's awesome! 

As evidence of my return to the kitchen, I baked up some Peach Crisp to use up the remainder of my Palisades Peaches - the rest were turned into jam and are in the freezer.  The peaches are definitely an ode to Summer, but there's something about Crisps and Cobblers that scream Autumn.
We got more than 12 cups of Blackberries from our bushes this year; there might be a few more to come.  I froze them individually as we picked them, and then packaged them in four cup bags - though I now realize I could have just tossed them in a giant bag and dished them out as needed.  Oh, well.  I decided it was time to use them and made this Blackberry Cobbler.  The recipe is from one of the Pioneer Woman cookbooks, but she's pinned it, as well.  So, so good!  If, like me, you don't keep self-rising flour on hand, you can find substitute recipes, like this one.

I love cooking shows.  I was watching a Bobby Flay show and he was doing Beer-Glazed Bratwurst with Wilted Red Cabbage, which we love - the Brats that is.  We were hosting the in-laws on Labor Day, he was cooking with brats and I had brats.  It was meant to be.  And it worked out well.  I loved the boiling liquid (if we marinate, it's usually just in dark beer.)  I made the mustard and the cabbage topping - though I'm not a huge sauerkraut fan - but this slaw/kraut thing was good.  It was sweet and worked well with the brats and mustard sauce.

I couldn't sleep last Sunday.  I got up and did some productive work and then had a bout of mom guilt because I hadn't cooked a Sunday Big Breakfast in months.  I had seen this Sheepherder's Breakfast and its one-pot prep appealed.  We keep dehydrated potatoes on hand, so after re-hydrating enough for the recipe, and cooking the bacon (I don't buy that pre-cooked stuff) the meal came together fairly quickly.  I erroneously cooked the eggs so they weren't runny, but apparently my family is okay with runny eggs in this type of setting.  It was really good and would be a good camping recipe.

The weekend kicks off with the High School's  season-opener football game, so I'll be two children short for dinner tonight.  My 13 y.o. is running for Student Council, so I'll help him run through his speech and getting him supplies for his poster.  Our town's Harvest Festival is also this weekend - a parade tomorrow morning and then Midway stuff all weekend.  My 5 y.o. would like to go (they can see the set-up from their school and the parking later today will be more psychopathic than usual because they start closing streets.  They can't wait 15 minutes?) and I expect my high schoolers may want to meet up with friends there, but there are no firm plans.  Otherwise, I think the weekend is fairly open, which means everything and nothing is possible.

Happy Friday,

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