In my opinion the best time of year is most definitely Fall. The crisp weather, the cozy sweaters; the food…sign me up for all of it! If it were up to me we would all live in a constant Autumn season. Now that the time is finally here, I figured it would be a good idea to share a few of my Fall favorites.
A few years ago I was hungry for dinner but I only had a few ingredients on hand and I couldn’t get to the store (this was before Instacart was a thing.) So, I googled something along the lines of: “What can you make with black beans and sweet potatoes?”
Right then Google introduced me to the greatness that is The Kitchn, and The recipe that is first up on my list of Fall favorites.
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Fall Favorite #1: Smoky Sweet Potato & Black Bean Casserole:
I cook this all the time; whether it is Harvest time or not, but…since it has a lot of Fall-(ish) ingredients I am adding this meal to my list of Fall Favorites. I make a few adjustments though.
The good news is it’s Vegetarian/Vegan (you could always use Vegan Mozzarella cheese instead.)
I added some Chipotle powder into the mix The recipe calls for cilantro as garnish. Since I can’t stand cilantro I always swap it for little chunks of avocado which I sprinkle on top during the last few minutes of baking.
Cooking spray or olive oil
2 tablespoons Olive oil
1 Medium yellow onion, diced
2 pounds Sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 (28-ounce) can Fire-roasted diced tomatoes, drained of juices
*You can cut an avocado in small chunks to sprinkle on top.
Serve with sour cream if you want.
Arrange a rack in the middle of the oven and heat to 400°F. Coat a 9×13-inch baking dish with cooking spray or olive oil; set aside.
Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat until shimmering.
Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, 8 to 10 minutes.
Add the sweet potatoes and cook until just heated through, about 5 minutes (they will not be cooked through). Transfer the mixture to a large bowl.
Add the black beans, drained tomatoes, 1 cup of the mozzarella, smoked paprika, salt, and garlic and stir to combine. Transfer to the baking dish and spread into an even layer. Sprinkle evenly with the remaining 2 cups mozzarella cheese.
Spray a large sheet of aluminum foil with cooking spray or coat with olive oil. Place the foil greased-side down over the baking dish and cover tightly.
Bake for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake until the sweet potatoes are tender and the cheese on top is browned in spots, about 30 minutes more. Let cool 10 minutes before serving
Fall Favorite #2: Candles
I’m known to go a little crazy at Bath and Body Works/White Barn this time of year. Once those Fall scents hit the shelfs…(or um, more socially acceptable right now) websites. I pretty much always have a candle going.
A few that I love:
Leaves– This is the definition of the season in scent form. That’s the only way I know how to describe it: https://amzn.to/3ixSqZW
Mahogany Apple– This smells so good! An aroma similar to a nice bottle of men’s cologne…which is really nice ’cause if you are single…just like me, you can at least have your home smell like you aren’t: https://amzn.to/2Sp4zWl
Fall Favorite #3: Tea
Unless you are new here, you know by now that I am obsessed with tea; all kinds of tea: Green. Black. Herbal. Hot. Iced. I love it! I’m not even gonna lie to you here, Harney and Sons (www.harney.com) is my favorite. (Other brands are great, don’t get me wrong…but there is a special place in my heart for Harney’s.)
Pumpkin Spice– (I haven’t had the chance to try this one yet..so I can’t claim it as a favorite yet.) However, I’m going to be ordering some soon. I really enjoy pumpkin everything, so I bet this tea will be a new favorite in no time. https://amzn.to/33oRvq3
What are your Fall Favorites? Let me know in the comments.
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