Flavors of the Month: October 2017

(formerly Pretty Things)

So I flat-out missed September (I also decided I like Flavors of the Month over Pretty Things…hope you do, too). I’d love to say I had some really interesting stuff happening, but it’s mostly more of the same.  My life is a revolving door or kids, cleaning, cooking… sometimes bike rides. I got overwhelmed with a road trip to my grandmother’s (alone!!) with all 4 kids, school starting, kids’ piano lessons, a toddler who’s learning like 3 words a day, and a husband who is deploying before Christmas for a year. 

It’s just ….a lot to take in at once. I have to learn stuff like  how to check my tire pressure on both the van and all the bikes.  It’s small potatoes but it’s something I’ve never done!  Before I was married, my Papa did that stuff.  JD is very handy, too. So there’s a lot of things I need to brush up on before he goes.

But he will be here for thanksgiving, our favorite holiday! I’m really happy about that.  We usually decorate for Christmas right after Halloween so we will have some time to enjoy the season together. Christmas Day will definitely be different- me and the kids alone.  And I can’t act like I have any answers, so I’m stopping for now and just showing you some pretty things.

1.Two Red Bowls: Braised Beef with Orzo.  I think I found a new favorite blog.  The pictures are beyond words, and the recipes are so creative.  Also the writing is actually very good (not always the case)!


2.  Adventures in Cooking: Zucchini Spaghetti with Sea Pesto.  This isn’t exactly a fall recipe, but it is so unique I had to share it.  Rehydrated dried seaweed is added to traditional pesto flavors and I’m intrigued.

3.  Martha Stewart: Cranberry, Almond, and Cinnamon Tart .  Since that seaweed pesto isn’t very fall-ish, here an extra fall-ish recipe.  Of all desserts, pastry is one of the ones I’m afraid to try from scratch, but I have to eventually conquer that fear.  
4.  How Sweet Eats: Oatmeal Latte .  Jessica makes some crazy-ass mashups, but this is one I definitely see myself making.  It’s fast and easy.  It’s also the perfect combination of 2 of the best cold-weather flavors:  coffee and oatmeal!  Yummmm.


5.  Milk Toast:  Not sure where on the internet.  I think this is a depression-era breakfast, and everyone knows the comparison to milk toast isn’t exactly a compliment.  But if it has stuck around for so long, it seems worth a try.  It’s only pantry ingredients, and it might be good, right?  Sort of like bread oatmeal?img_1855.png


6.  Fix Feast Flair: Cardamom Pear Upside Down Cake I like pears way better than apples.  I’ll eat apples if they’re cooked in a pie or something, but never raw.  But if you get pears in season, they are so flavorful and juicy!  I always look for the yellower-tinted ones over the greener ones.  They’re softer and sweeter.  They have a really short window of being perfectly ripe and too ripe (mealy, yuck), so you have to watch them!  This cake looks so delicate and delicious –and pretty easy.

7.  Nordic Ware: Fall Cakelet Pans.  These are the cutest things ever.  I don’t have tons of room in my kitchen for specialty shaped baking pans, but fall is the best time for baking, so these could be justified.  It’s like homemade Little Debbie Cakes, but a thousand times better, right?

8. Joann Fabrics: Pumpkin Boutique.  I become more basic with each passing year, but I’ve kinda stopped caring.  I bought 6 of these to line my dining room table, and they look so festive and pretty!  I love Joann because they have so much seasonal decor at way better prices that Target, Pier 1, or At Home.  Plus they run sales constantly.  If you receive e-mails, you’ll get a 40-50% off coupon about once a week on top of the sales in the ad.  My favorite pumpkin that I got is this velvet one.