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This boy.

And this girl.

Met around this awkward age.

She noticed his green (yes, green tennis shoes).

And he noticed her sweet glasses.

And they grew up friends.

Then, he went here.

And, she went here.

And eventually a group of college punks went on a magical spring break here. Ugh, I know.

And the romance began (they’ll be telling their kids that they met in Youth Group at Church, thank ya very much).

A way down the road, he popped the question.

And then, this.

At which point, she decided to officially adopt his first baby as her own.

And then, they committed to a real ding dong for better or worse.

A few years later, they made this.

Today is not my anniversary. It is not my guy’s birthday.

It is just a Thursday.

And like every other Thursday for the past twelve plus years, this boy is on my mind.

He still makes me weak in the knees.

He still makes me laugh harder than anyone else I know.

He still takes me on dates and pursues me.

He makes me feel special. And loved. And important.

Sigh, I just love him.

That’s all.
XO,

Leah

Boy oh boy.

Do I ever have a treat for you.

It is the mother of all fall foods.

I am the mother of all fall foods.

Mother Lover, I love fall foods.

I’ve had too much coffee.

And I digress.

We had a wee stretch of cool weather here in Ohio, and I was ready to have a fall food or two or thrity-five.

I love this time of year with almost my whole heart.

I say almost because fall leads to winter. Winter=Worst.

If fall didn’t lead to winter, I would officially name it the best season ever.

I love the colors. I love crunchy leaves. I love long walks with the dogs where I don’t sweat like a horse or freeze my derrière off. I love the warm days and the cool nights. I love soup.

What I’m trying to say is that I love all of the things that are the essence of fall.

And just like the summer, I look forward to the fruits and vegetables of the season. For fall, I love apples and pears and squash and pumpkins and dark leafy greens. Mmmmm.

For this recipe, delicious fall apples and pears are the stars of the show.

If you have kids, please note that I think they will go ga-ga for this culinary delight.

Apple and Pear Sauce.

Oh my heavens, yes.

It is like applesauce… only with pears and a hint of citrus added.

Tell me that doesn’t sound amazing.

You can’t tell me that it doesn’t sound amazing.

Because it does sound amazing.

Know what makes it even more amazing?

Heated up Apple and Pear Sauce.

Fuh-get-about-it.

This recipe is based on one of my girl Ina’s recipes. In my  head, Ina and I are old friends. We sit together in the Hamptons with all of our florist and catering male friends, we sip a cocktail, and we discuss the night’s menu. That’s normal, right?

Of course it is.

Please disregard everything I have said up until this point.

And just preheat your oven to 375.

I got out my beloved French Oven. Sigh, I truly do love this beauty.
And I am fully aware that it is more than a little jank to love a kitchen accessory with your body, mind and spirit.

This is the first dish I made in the LeCreuset this fall.

She sure is pretty, isn’t she?

If you don’t have a dutch oven or a french oven, never fear!

This whole recipe can be done in a crock pot.

One might think that the first thing you will need to make Apple and Pear Sauce would be apples or pears.

However, one would be wrong.

One needs an orange and a lemon.

I used two oranges and one lemon; however, don’t be like me.

Just use one of each.

Zest your orange right into your pot.

And then zest your lemon.

Slice your orange in half and squeeze the juice from both sides into your pot.

And then do the same with your lemon.

My lemon was hard to juice.

I needed both hands to adequately squeeze that bad boy.

Survey your citrus carnage.

Now come the apples!

I used 7 apples.

I started with these 6 Gala apples.

Peel, core, slice and dice your apples.

Add them to your pot.

Now get out 6 pears.
I used 3 Bartlett pears (the yellowy-green pears) and 3 Bosc pears.

Bosc pears are brown when they are ripe. They are green when they are not yet ripe.

*Side Note: Bosc pears are delicious on their own. Try slicing up a bosc pear and eating it with a tiny bit of blue cheese on top. If you are feeling dangerous, put a dab of honey on the pear and cheese. It is so so good. Serve it up with a good red wine… a perfect simple romantic appetizer for two. Or a dessert. Or a lunch. You get the idea.

Peel, core, slice and dice your pears. And add them to the pot.

I mentioned that I used 7 apples in my recipe. However, I only processed 6 in the step above.

That is because I left the skin on one apple.
I kind of like the texture that a little bit of skin gives to applesauce.

If you don’t like it, then go ahead and peel all of your apples.

Doesn’t bother me any!

So, your pot should now be filled with:

-Zest of one orange

-Juice of one orange

-Zest of one lemon

-Juice of one lemon

-6 apples peeled, cored, sliced, diced

-1 apple unpeeled, cored sliced, diced

-6 pears peeled, cored, sliced, diced

Stir that up.

Add in some cinnamon.

I used about 1 1/2 teaspoons.

And then toss in 2 T. of butter.

And top all of that off with 1/3 cup of brown sugar.

Give it all another stir.

Then pop the lid on the pot or your slow cooker.

If you are doing this in an oven, cook the sauce for 40 minutes. Then, pull it out give it a stir and let it cook for another 40 min.

If you are cooking this in a slow cooker, put it on low for 6 hours stirring it occasionally if you are at home.

After the sauce has been fully cooked, pull the pot out of the oven.

And use a whisk to break down some of the chunks that are left. The whisk will help you get your sauce to your desired consistency.

At this point the apples and pears are so soft that it really doesn’t take much effort to get them broken down.

You are left with a giant vat of the most delicious apple and pear sauce ever.

Now, what to do with that sauce…

1. Eat it plain- either hot or cold. It is delicious either way.

2. Eat it on a crepe with cream cheese- yes, we did this. And yes, it was mind blowing.

3. Warm it up and pile it on some vanilla ice cream.

4. Use it cold to top some cottage cheese.

5. Slather it on a piece of toast or use it to make a Peanut Butter and Apple/Pear Sauce Sandwich.

There were only 2 of us eating our way through this mountain of goodness, and we did it in no time.

I think this ended up being my favorite way to eat the sauce- warmed and in a bowl.

Fall perfection.

XO,

Leah

Today, I laid a blanket down on the crunchy leaves.

And then my boy and I popped a squat on top.

We cuddled together staring at the leaves above us.

I burned the moment into my memory.

Because it is all of these moments- these seemingly inconsequential moments- these perfect little quiet moments- that I want to remember forever.

Have a great weekend friends,

Leah

 

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