Wednesday, September 4, 2013

60 Second Fall Recipe Reviews

I think I may have officially lost my mind. Last weekend I decided to try SIX new recipes. To be fair, it was a long Labor Day weekend, so I had extra time. I should also point out that I didn't come to this decision lightly - I very rationally recognized that given the number of Fall weekends left in 2013 there was NO way I could get to all the recipes I want to make, even if I doubled up. On top of that, I considered the fact that I would be out of town some weekends, which left me with fewer weekends, and I'm adding new recipes to my "Fall to-try" list every day, and OMG! Okay, so I got nervous, panicked, and made a whole bunch of food. But there are worse crimes. If you're in need of Fall inspiration (recipes or otherwise) check out my Fall Pinterest board.

Anyway, here's what I made: Caesar pasta salad, mini maple glazed doughnut-hole muffins, chocolate-coconut pumpkin bundt cake, pumpkin fluff dip, baked apple chips, and pumpkin mac & cheese with bacon. Since we're focusing on Fall, forget about the Caesar pasta salad for now. Here's a super-speed recipe review of the Fall-themed items I tried this weekend:
  • mini maple glazed doughnut-hole muffins (from: Circle B Kitchen) - this made 20 mini muffins which looked just like the picture. Cute and golden brown with shiny drizzles of glaze running down the sides. So far so good. These are definitely all muffin; don't let the name fool you. They were just slightly too dry on their own to eat without the glaze, but the glaze was not nearly mapley enough (even when I added a lot more) and was overly powdered sugary for our liking. Having said all that, we still ate all 20 in about half an hour, so they weren't bad. They just weren't anything special.
    • Verdict: skip it
  • chocolate-coconut pumpkin bundt cake (from Ambitious Kitchen) - yummy and moist cake with an easy-to-follow recipe. I used a mixture of milk and semi-sweet chocolate in place of the dark chocolate. Even so, the pumpkin flavor was definitely overshadowed by the chocolate. Got rave reviews from my coworkers and my father, who didn't mind that it was only subtly pumpkiny. The glaze didn't set up for me and turned to a slightly dense, spongy texture. Drizzling was not an option, so I pressed it onto the top of the cake so the tosated coconut would stick. Still pretty. I'm on the fence about whether I'll make it again. If I do, it won't be when I want something that tastes like Fall.
    • Verdict: skip it if you're looking for full-on Fall flavors
  • pumpkin fluff dip (from allrecipes) - It's ridiculously easy, very self explanatory, and absolutely delish! Mix ingredients and enjoy. I used fat free Cool Whip. I also added a good bit more pumpkin pie spice than the recipe calls for and added cinnamon and vanilla extract to taste. Unless you are making this for a group of more than 6, I highly recommend that you halve the recipe. I see myself making this frequently all Fall long. It's great with graham crackers (or with a spoon!). Very kid friendly and somewhat low-calorie.
    • Verdict: MAKE IT!
  • baked apple chips (from Sally's Baking Addiction) - Be sure to check out all of Sally's blog - it's one of my favorites! These are a great healthy snack. I did core the apples before starting. I followed Sally's recipe for cooking times, but didn't add any sugar on my apples - just cinnamon. (Did you see the other stuff I made this weekend? I didn't need the extra sugar.) I don't have a mandoline slicer, so I just made them as thin as possible using a knife. However, I plan to invest in one now that I know how tasty these are. We ate these as a healthy appetizer before digging into a decidedly less-healthy Labor Day barbeque. Husband and parent approved!
    • Verdict: MAKE THEM!
  • pumpkin macaroni and cheese with bacon - this deserves, and will get, a whole post. Check back soon for the review and the full recipe. This stuff is life changing...

1 comment:

  1. yum!! what a weekend - i'm definitely interested in the apple chips ;)