Fall Harvest Dinner Menu

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DuckHarvestheroSaladPearGoatcheese

Harvest Salad with Pears and Pepitas

1 lb baby spinach mix blend, 2 bosc pears, 1 cup pepitas, 4 oz goat cheese

To roast pepitas, toss them in a little olive oil, salt and pepper. Roast for 13-15 minutes in a 325°F oven

Add salad leaves to a large serving bowl. Top with sliced pears, roasted pepitas and crumbled goat cheese. Toss with a 1⁄2 cup vinaigrette and serve.

 

Apple cider vinaigrette
3⁄4 cup olive oil
1⁄4 cup raw apple cider vinegar

1 garlic clove

2 tablespoons raw honey
2 teaspoons dijon mustard
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
combine ingredients in small bowl and whisk to combine. Continue reading
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Fresh picked Apple Blue Cheese Arugula Flat Bread

It was a bumper crop of apples this year, I had a stylist bringing in bushels of apples from her trees.  She had so many apples this year she could not get rid of them.  They put a  ladder out by the apple trees for the neighbors to come and help themselves. They are great baking apples.  I felt like something savory as opposed to sweet to bake. I saw this apple pizza recipe, it had all the ingredients I love, blue cheese, arugula and pizza.  I still had a bunch of thyme in the garden so I loaded up the pizza with extra herbs and pecans-it was all good.  I recommend what ever pizza crust recipe you like, It does help to pre-bake the crust for like 3 to 4 minutes before you put the apples on and bake it , I think the apples add moisture to the crust and can make it soggy.  You can make this with goat cheese or feta cheese but I really liked the combination of the pungent blue cheese that was smoothed out with the sweet crisp apples.

Apple Ginger Pie with Cider-Bourban Sauce

When I think of pie, I think my aunt’s thanksgiving pies.  Lined up on grandma’s counter tempting me all evening till dessert.  There was always several to choose from, the classic pumpkin, apple and perhaps a banana cream pie. My aunt makes the best pie crusts they are flakey salty and sweet.  I try to duplicate her recipe but it never seems to come out as good. And I have not mastered the rolling out the dough nice and even.  I did just read a recent tip of rolling out the crust between two pieces of plastic wrap, I will have to try this next time.  I found this classic apple recipe, I have to be honest it had me at Cider-Bourban Sauce. A nice warm slice of apple pie with some sauce and a scoop of vanilla ice cream. mmmm What else says Fall.
Crust

  • 2 1/2 cups unbleached all purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon apple pie spice
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 1/3 cup chilled solid vegetable shortening
  • 7 tablespoons sour cream

Filling

  • 3 pounds Pippin apples, peeled, cored, cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons minced crystallized ginger
  • 2 tablespoons bourbon
  • 1 teaspoon apple pie spice
  • Milk
  • Sugar
  • Vanilla ice cream

Cider-Bourbon Sauce

  • 5 cups apple cider
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 3 tablespoons bourbon

For Crust :
Mix flour, sugar, salt and apple pie spice in processor. Add butter and shortening and cut in until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add sour cream and blend in using on/off turns just until dough forms. Turn out dough onto lightly floured surface. Divide in half. Form each half into a ball; flatten into disk. Wrap each disk in plastic wrap and refrigerate 1 hour.

For Filling:
Preheat oven to 400°F. Toss first 6 ingredients together in bowl.

Roll out 1 dough disk between sheets of plastic wrap to 13-inch round. Peel off top sheet; invert dough into 9 1/2-inch deep-dish glass pie dish. Peel off plastic. Roll out remaining dough disk between sheets of plastic wrap to 13-inch round. Peel off top sheet of plastic. Mound filling in pie dish. Invert dough over filling. Peel off plastic. Pinch edges of dough to seal. Trim excess crust. Crimp edges decoratively. Cut 5 slashes in top of dough to allow steam to escape. Brush top with milk and sprinkle with sugar. Bake until golden brown, covering with foil if browning too quickly, about 1 hour.

Let pie stand until just slightly warm, about 1 hour. Serve pie with ice cream and Cider-Bourbon Sauce.

For the cider-bourbon sauce:
Boil apple cider in heavy medium saucepan until reduced to 3/4 cup, about 45 minutes. Add butter and sugar and whisk until butter melts. Boil 3 minutes, whisking occasionally. Remove from heat. Whisk in bourbon. Cool sauce completely before serving.

The left over pie crust makes a yummy crust crisp. Melt some butter, smooth over rolled out crust sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon and bake till flakey.  Enjoy

Apple slice styled by food stylist Barb Standal.