Fun Fall Recipes

With brisk breezes and fall leaves on their way, here are some fun, seasonal recipes that are downright delicious and easy to make. Apples and pumpkins are some of the most prominent flavors of fall, so when the leaves start to change color, enjoy these delicious autumnal recipes and get cooking.

No-Bake Pumpkin Cheesecake Mini Trifles
Yields 8
• 1 (8 ounce) brick cream cheese, softened
• 1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
• 1 (15 ounce) can pure pumpkin
• 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
• 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
• 2 cup heavy cream, cold
• 2 tablespoon plus 1/2 cup granulated sugar
• 2 cup crumbled ginger cookies or graham crackers
• 1 1/4 cup chopped candied nuts

With mixer on medium speed, beat cream cheese until fluffy. Gradually beat in brown sugar until smooth. Add pumpkin, vanilla and pumpkin pie spice. Mix until smooth, scraping side of bowl as needed; set aside. In separate bowl, with mixer on medium-high speed, beat cream until soft peaks form. Gradually beat in 2 tablespoons granulated sugar until stiff peaks form.

In medium bowl, combine cookies and 1 cup chopped nuts; divide half among 8 parfait glasses. Divide half of pumpkin mixture among glasses, followed by half of whipped cream. Repeat layering of cookies, pumpkin and whipped cream. Cover and refrigerate at least 3 hours or up to 1 day.

Line cookie sheet with foil. Spray foil with nonstick cooking spray. In small saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons water and remaining 1/2 cup granulated sugar to boiling on medium-high; cook until golden. Working quickly, stir in remaining 1/4 cup nuts, then spread mixture onto prepared foil in thin layer. Cool completely. Break into small shards. To serve trifles, garnish with brittle.

Savory Pumpkin and Sage Soup
Yields 8
Ingredients For the Soup
• 1/4 cup olive oil
• 3 large sweet onions, sliced
• 3 cloves garlic, chopped
• 2 large leaves sage, chopped
• 2 teaspoon fresh ginger, grated and peeled
• 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
• 2 quart lower-sodium vegetable or chicken broth
• 3 (15 ounce) cans pure pumpkin
• 1 tablespoon lemon juice

For the Sage and Shiitake Garnish
• 1 in. oil
• 24 small sage leaves
Kosher salt
• 7 ounce shiitake mushrooms, stemmed and very thinly sliced

Make the Soup: In 5-quart saucepot, heat oil on medium. Add onions and salt. Cook 40 minutes or until deep golden brown, stirring occasionally. Add garlic, sage, ginger and nutmeg. Cook 5 minutes or until garlic is golden, stirring occasionally. Add broth and pumpkin. Heat to simmering on high, scraping up browned bits from bottom of pot. Reduce heat to maintain simmer; cook 20 minutes stirring occasionally.

With immersion blender or in batches in blender, puree soup until smooth. Stir in lemon juice, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. Makes about 10 cups. Soup can be made and refrigerated up to 2 days ahead. Reheat on medium. (If soup is too thick, add water or broth for desired consistency. Season to taste.)

Make the Sage and Shiitake Garnish: In 2-quart saucepan, heat oil on high until hot but not smoking. Add sage leaves to oil. Fry 1 to 2 minutes or until leaves are browned, stirring occasionally. With slotted spoon, transfer to large paper-towel-lined plate; sprinkle with pinch of salt. In batches, add shiitake mushrooms to hot oil. Fry 2 minutes or until deep golden brown, stirring occasionally. Transfer to same plate as sage; sprinkle with pinch of salt. Cool completely. Garnish can be made up to 3 hours ahead. Let stand at room temperature.

Slow Cooker Turkey Pumpkin Chili
Yields 4
• 2 cup low-sodium chicken broth
• 1 can pumpkin purée
• 1 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
• 3/4 teaspoon chili powder
• 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
• 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
• 1 pound lean ground turkey
• 1 large onion
• 2 clove garlic
• 2 can green chiles
• 2 can white beans
Sour Cream
Cheddar Cheese
Sliced Radishes
Fresh Cilantro Leaves

In a 5-to-6-quart slow cooker, whisk together the broth, pumpkin, cumin, chili powder, cinnamon, and cayenne. Add the turkey and mix to combine.

Fold in the onion, garlic, chilies, and beans, and cook, covered, until the turkey is cooked through, 4 to 5 hours on high or 6 to 7 hours on low. Serve with sour cream, cheddar cheese, radishes, and cilantro, if desired.

White Wine Baked Apples
Yields 8
• 8 baking apples, such as Golden Delicious, cored
• 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
• 1 cup dry white Rioja wine
• 16 teaspoons sugar

Preheat the oven to 400°. Arrange the apples in a small roasting pan and add 1/4 cup of water. Fill each apple cavity with 1/2 tablespoon of butter. Drizzle with the wine and sprinkle each with 2 teaspoons of sugar.

Cover the apples loosely with foil and bake for 45 minutes, until barely tender. Uncover and bake for 15 to 25 minutes longer, until the apples are tender but still hold their shape. Serve with the pan juices.

Apple Honey Drumsticks
Yields 6
• 12 skin-on chicken drumsticks
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
• 2 cups apple juice
• 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
• 1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
• 2 teaspoons honey
Grated zest of 1 lemon
• 1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
• 2 teaspoons sesame seeds (optional)
• 1 tablespoon unsalted butter

Preheat the oven to 450º F. Set a wire rack on a rimmed baking sheet. Put the drumsticks on the rack and season both sides generously with salt and pepper. Bake 30 minutes; flip the drumsticks and continue baking until golden and crisp, about 30 more minutes.

Meanwhile, make the sauce: Bring the apple juice, vinegar, soy sauce, honey, lemon zest, red pepper flakes and a pinch of salt to a high simmer in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook until the sauce is syrupy and coats the back of a spoon, 20 to 25 minutes. Set aside until the chicken is done.

Stir the sesame seeds into the sauce, if using, and warm over medium heat, if necessary. Transfer the chicken to a large bowl. Add the sauce and butter and toss to coat. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer the chicken to a platter and drizzle with any remaining sauce from the bowl.