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Posts tagged “fall

The Perfect Cookies + The Famous Banana Bread [recipes]

One of my favorite things about Fall is settling into the therapeutic routine of baking. I’ve always loved the art of perfecting the chocolate chip cookie or the challenge of trying an ambitious, new recipe. Though, while I bake year-round, it never feels quite right until the brisk air seeps breezily through the open windows or the pumpkin vanilla candle burns to wick’s end.

That’s when baking feels like home.

With a quieter pace the last few weeks, I found two new recipes to try – one for a very special occasion and one to add a little bit of special to a typical week.


B R O W N E D   B U T T E R  +  T O F F E E   C O O K I E S

Very special occasion: Fred’s 75th birthday. I think the entire family would tell you these were a hit. And we continued to eat on them all week. Also, special shoutout to Candace for finding and sharing the recipe. To me, these will always be “Candace cookies.”

 

Ingredients:
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
¾ teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup (packed) dark brown sugar
⅓ cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs, room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 chocolate toffee bars, chopped into ¼-inch pieces
1½ cups dark chocolate melting wafers
Sea salt

Directions:

  1. Cook butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat, stirring often, until it foams, then browns, 5–8 minutes. Scrape into a large bowl and let cool slightly.
  2. Meanwhile, whisk flour, baking soda, and kosher salt in a medium bowl.
  3. Add brown sugar and granulated sugar to browned butter. Using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat until incorporated, about 1 minute. Add eggs and vanilla and beat until mixture lightens and begins to thicken, about 30 seconds. Reduce mixer speed to low; add dry ingredients and beat just to combine. Mix in toffee pieces and chocolate wafers with a wooden spoon or a rubber spatula. Let dough sit at room temperature at least 30 minutes to allow the flour to hydrate. Dough will look very loose at first, but will thicken as it sits.
  4. Place a rack in middle of oven; preheat to 375°. Form ping-pong sized balls and place on a parchment-lined baking sheet, spacing about 3″ apart. Do not flatten; cookies will spread as they bake. Sprinkle with sea salt.
  5. Bake cookies until edges are golden brown and firm but centers are still soft, 9–11 minutes. Let cool on baking sheets 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely. Repeat with remaining dough and a fresh parchment-lined baking sheet to make 10 more cookies.
  6. Sprinkle more sea salt on top right out of the oven!

 

C H R I S S Y  T E I G E N  ( + T W I T T E R ‘ S )  B A N A N A   B R E A D

If you don’t know the story behind this banana bread, google it. It’s hilarious. Or buy her cookbook – I promise you it’s worth every penny. I’ve made 4 recipes so far and all have been phenomenal, this one no exception. A little chocolate chip banana bread for no reason, but to break the monotony of the week.

 

Ingredients:
2 cups mashed very ripe bananas*
4 eggs
2⁄3 cup canola oil, plus a little more to grease the pan
2 cups all-purpose flour, plus a little more for dusting the pan
2 cups sugar
1 (3.5-ounce) box vanilla instant pudding mix
1 teaspoon baking soda
1½ teaspoons kosher salt
1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1 (3.5-ounce) bar dark chocolate, chopped into chunks
Salted butter, for serving

*Get six brown bananas. Not four. Not five. Six. You will think you only need five because it looks like enough, but it will not be enough. You will get five, you will mash them, you will be about half an inch short and that makes a difference and you cannot get around it. Trust me.

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 325°F.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the mashed bananas, eggs, and oil. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, sugar, pudding mix, baking soda, and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and combine well BUT GENTLY. I swear this came out differently when I used an aggressive electric mixer. Fold in the coconut and chocolate chunks.
  3. Grease and flour a Bundt pan (that means wipe a little grease all over the inside of the pan, dust it with flour, and tip it upside down to shake out any extra flour). Pour the batter into the pan. (This can also make two 8 × 4-inch loaves, but it’s so much more moist in one Bundt pan!)
  4. Bake until the cake springs back when lightly pressed and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 55 to 60 minutes. (Test it with a toothpick at around 50 minutes.) Let it cool slightly in the pan, then use a butter knife to gently release the cake from the sides of the pan and around the inner circle, then flip it onto a plate.
  5. Let it cool and cut it into slices. Rewarm them and serve them with salty butter!!

    What’s your favorite Fall baking recipe?
    xo xo

You might also enjoy: Peanut Butter Cup Cheesecake Bars, Bourbon Apple Cake


life lately: fall party + kc weekend

3 R D   A N N U A L   F A L L   P A R T Y
[wine, appetizers + friends to celebrate the best season of all]


W E E K E N D   G E T A W A Y :   K A N S A S   C I T Y
[fun, albeit rainy, weekend getaway with friends + a concert][55 degrees and rainy shopping day on the plaza]

[KC must-eat: bbq!]

[the BEST brunch at the corner restaurant]

[WWI museum and memorial – highly recommend and beautiful views of the city]

[The National at Starlight Theatre – amazing show and we were so close to the stage!!
It did rain the entire show, but we made the best of it!]

[and THEN – Matt Berninger, lead singer of husband’s all-time FAVORITE band, came into the audience RIGHT NEXT TO US and husband sang into the mic with him. You have to trust me because I barely got a pic, but this “after” photo of husband is pretty telling. Life complete.]

xo xo


it’s fall y’all. [my favorite cozy recipes]

K + TC – this post is dedicated to you,
my favorite couple who tries all my recipes! 

Okay it’s fall, ya’ll. Officially fall in the books, and officially fall in the weather. Isn’t it crazy how that happens? 90+ degrees one day, then 57 on the first day of fall?! Someone up there knew us Arkansans were ready for some PSL weather. And yes, I did have my first PSL on that glorious fall morning.

This week I’m preparing for my 3rd Annual Fall Party next weekend. It’s been one of my favorite things to look forward to the last 3 years, and I’ve heard similar sentiment from friends. How could you not love a party celebrating the arrival of a new season with chunky sweaters, wine, cheese and all things pumpkin???

One of the best things about fall weather is FOOD. I have several recipes that only make their resurgence when the air turns crisp again. I’ve shared a few on the blog before, but here’s a roundup:

Italian Sausage Tortellini Soup – this is one of my all-time favorite recipes, and can’t wait to make it soon
Pumpkin Fettuccine
Bourbon Apple Cake
One-Pan Enchilada Pasta

Now, a new one to share – one of the staples in the Alderman household this time of year – CHILI.
Everyone has their own chili recipe, which I love, because there are so many ways you can change it to fit your tastes. This one I’ve honed over the years and it’s perfect for us. I made my first batch Friday night and already thinking about making it again.

M I L L E ‘ S   C H I L I 

Ingredients
1.25 lb ground turkey
2 cans beans – I prefer black beans + light red kidney beans
2 8oz. cans tomato sauce
15 oz. can stewed tomatoes
15 oz. can diced tomatoes
2 4 oz. cans diced green chilies
2 tbs. chili powder
2 tbs. cumin
dash of cinnamon!

Directions
Cook the ground turkey.
Drain and rinse the beans.
Combine all ingredients in crockpot on low for 6 hours.
Our preference: Serve with sharp cheddar cheese and jalapeños!

 

Let me know what your favorite fall recipes are, and if you try any of mine!
xo xo


Picturebook: Fall Party!

I think we can all agree – Fall is the BEST season of all. If you don’t agree, you can just stop reading now.

(Just kidding. Kind of.)

For the first time, I decided to host a party celebrating all the best things of the season – red wine, pumpkin-flavored everything, scarves, boots, and the perfect weather.

And boy, did we have it all!!

See a few pictures below. Unfortunately I didn’t get quite enough for my liking … but I do have a couple of hilarious videos/snaps to show if you ask next time you see me.

img_0145{party outfit goal: basic white girl – fall edition}

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img_0130{drink table, including my signature drink: apple cider mimosas (delish!)}

img_0123{This was SUCH an easy appetizer/dessert – wrap butter-soaked apples, apple pie spice + brown sugar mixture, and pecans in crescent rolls. Cook for 8-10 minutes.}

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img_0029{These were our contributions – apple pie bites (recipe above), baked brie with fig, pumpkin cheesecake bars + pumpkin salsa from fresh market (which was seriously a hit!) This doesn’t show all the amaaaazing food our friends brought. Thanks, friends!}

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img_0038{Love these beautiful friends! Unfortunately didn’t get any other pics with the 20+ people who were there, but I love them too!}

img_0142{late night games: drenga + fingers}

img_0141{final pic of the night with husband <3}

[not pictured: shenanigans on our back patio, including boys + cigars, a hilarious 30 minutes trying to open a champagne bottle with a knife then a shoe, and stories that made us laugh ‘ till we cried.]

xo xo


Pumpkin Fettuccine {recipe}

Y’all know I love pumpkin. Over the years I’ve shared recipes for Pumpkin Butter Cake, Pumpkin Bread, Pumpkin Cheesecake, and my favorite – Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Brownies.

Well, here’s a new one for ya – Pumpkin Fettuccine. To be honest, I can’t even remember where I found the recipe, but it looked easy, delicious and a unique way to use pumpkin!

I was skeptical to tell Husband what I was making. I thought he would turn up his nose and look at me like I was crazy. But he surprised me and was open to it.

Guys, let me be the first to tell you … it.was.amazing. Seriously. Amazing. It was so so easy and had just a subtle pumpkin flavor.

Even if you aren’t a pumpkin lover like me, but are a fettuccine alfredo lover, then take a risk and add some pumpkin. It is fall, y’all.

P U M P K I N   F E T T U C C I N E 

img_0197{you cook. I’ll drink. or in this case, I’ll do both.}

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img_0227{best served with sister schubert’s rolls!}

Ingredients:
1 box of fettuccine
2 tablespoons butter
5 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup pumpkin puree (canned pumpkin)
2 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese

Directions:
1. Cook the fettuccine according to package directions.
2. Heat the butter over medium heat. Add the garlic; saute until soft and fragrant. Add the pumpkin and heavy whipping cream. Simmer until slightly thickened. Add the cheese and stir to combine.
3. Toss the pasta in the sauce. Top with additional parmesan and season to taste with S&P.

xo xo


life lately [special edition]

It’s been almost a month since my last blog post. I’ve been busy, but not too busy. I’ve been enjoying life and husband and family and friends, and for some reason haven’t felt like blogging.

And that’s why I love this. I have no requirement or burden to blog every week. I blog for me, and if I need time to rejuvenate and not pick up a computer after work, so be it.

I love all my readers, and hopefully they’ve missed my posts at least a little. And while it was nice to step away a bit and enjoy the fall season moving in, I’m excited to be back with several posts on the tip of my fingers.

But first, let me catch you up a little on my life lately …

screen-shot-2016-10-12-at-6-05-23-pm{loving this || wednesday over water at crystal bridges, presidential style!}

screen-shot-2016-10-12-at-6-06-06-pm{drinking this || first PSL of the season!}

screen-shot-2016-10-12-at-6-05-38-pm{dining in this || blindfolds… for dining in the dark at river grille – we ate alpaca! eek!}

img_0169{eating this || italian sausage tortellini soup – the best fall recipe!}

screen-shot-2016-10-12-at-6-05-58-pm{overly excited about this || fixing our walls after our puppy ate them. you can just call us chip and joanna}

screen-shot-2016-10-12-at-6-06-24-pm{buying this || amazing sunflowers + arkansas black apples at the farmers market}

screen-shot-2016-10-12-at-6-06-33-pm{enjoying this || tailgating + a birthday night out in fayetteville}

SUITS -- Season: 2 -- Pictured: (l-r) Patrick J. Adams as Mike Ross, Gabriel Macht as Harvey Specter -- Photo by: Robert Ascroft/USA Network

     {bingeing this || SUITS! love me some mike + harvey}

Other eventful happenings …
– a hand infection from my rose bushes that caused 2 dr. visits, 1 allergic reaction, 5 medications + countless sleepless nights
– a new KING bed! pictures and blog post to come
– FALL PARTY! celebrating the best season of all with apple cider mimosas, lots of brie + champagne soaked clothes. of course I have photos and of course I will do a post about it soon.

xo xo

 


Fall Wish List

This weekend, I realized another reason why Fall is my favorite season. No.more.yard.work.

 

No, I don’t have to mow and edge every week like husband does (and I know, that is awfuuuul), but I do work in our garden. We were fortunate we already had a nice flower bed when we moved in, with 6+ massive and gorgeous rose bushes. “How lucky we are!” I thought. HA! Who knew rose bushes were so difficult to control?! And don’t even get me started on pulling weeds and mulching, which I did this weekend … again.

 

Nevertheless, FALL. I’ve already shared my excitement for new Fall TV shows, but below are a few other things that get me giddy about the best season of all and are currently on my Fall Wish List.

 

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B O O T S
These Sam Edelman boots are exactly what I need this season.

 

screen-shot-2016-09-14-at-5-58-43-pmP L A I D  B L A N K E T
Check! Found this one at Home Goods and used it on the front porch last weekend.

 

screen-shot-2016-09-14-at-6-22-16-pm
F A L L  D E C O R
Looking for new fun ways to decorate this Fall, and love this idea!

 

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 C R O C K P O T  R E C I P E
I love a good, hearty crockpot recipe and this one is next on the list – Potato and Corn Chowder.

 

screen-shot-2016-09-14-at-5-56-48-pm
P A T A G O N I A
Husband and I live in these in the Fall, and we decided we’d buy a new one this year on the first day of the season. Picked mine out!

 

196a4ca4313f5864d3b92a986be2f15cB L A N K E T  S C A R F
I already have one of these, but definitely need another one. These colors are gorgeous.

 

0becab4c7a8ed67bc7d2986ff0550b9bF A L L  S C E N T E D  C A N D L E
Check! My pumpkin pie woodwick candle is burning constantly, and it’s amazing.

 

4092776110b5fa6450c49e2481dbbd67O X B L O O D  P U R S E
Like this one. Except a little more affordable than Celine. Maybe someday.

 

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A L L  T H I N G S  P U M P K I N
Pumpkin spice macarons will happen soon thanks to my amazing friend M.

 

I’m even hosting a Fall-themed party for the first time this year. I’ve already been Pinterest-ing in anticipation and can’t wait to share the details in a few weeks!

 

Xo xo