Sorry I don't have any pictures to go with these recipes. The last time I made them was last fall... I guess that means that I'm going to have to make both of these dishes all over again so I can show you what they look like, huh?
The first recipe is my Pecan and Apple Stuffing. I lurve stuffing. Of course, I'm a carboholic, so I tend to naturally gravitate towards these kinds of foods anyway, lol. This stuffing is great, and I've even made it for our large family gatherings and nobody knew it was vegan... soy sausage and all! The tart apples and crunchy pecans give a nice balance to the savory sausage. This dish (as well as the veggie medley, below) have all the flavors of fall wrapped up into one dish!
One note: the recipe calls for fresh sage, but I've never used fresh. I usually use a teaspoon or two of rubbed sage (the leafy kind, not the powdered kind). Since sage can be a little overpowering, I would just add a teaspoon of dried and then maybe go from there. Just don't add 1/4 cup dried! Lol (ahem... speaking from experience here...). Also, I can't remember where the recipe is from or what I've done to change it. My bad. I usually like to give credit where credit is due, so if it looks familiar, just let me know!
Pecan and Apple Stuffing:
10 slices whole wheat bread, cubed
10 slices hearty white bread, cubed (I like to use a thick oat bread)
1 (14 oz.) tube Gimmie lean, crumbled
1 Tb. olive oil
1 lg. white onion, chopped
5 ribs celery, sliced
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 tart apples, peeled, diced (Granny Smith are good)
1/2 c. roasted pecans, chopped
1/4 c. fresh sage
1 1/2 c. vegetable broth
Salt and pepper to taste.
1. Preheat oven to 325F. Bake bread cubes 10-15 minutes, or until toasted. Once toasted, set aside to cool then place in a large bowl.
2. Spray a skillet with some nonstick and saute the Gimmie Lean until cooked and crumbled, about 5 minutes. Toss with the toasted bread cubes in the bowl.
3. Heat the olive oil, then add the onion, celery, and garlic. Saute 1 minute. Reduce heat to low, cover, and cook 7 minutes more. Stir in apples, nuts, and sage. Cover, and cook 5 minutes more or until apples are crisp-tender. Add to bread in the bowl (you can actually make ahead to this point. Once you reach here, just cover the bowl and place in the refrigerator until you're ready to finish the stuffing later. You could easily make this a day ahead).
4. Increase oven to 350F. Coat a 13 x 9 inch baking dish with cooking spray. Toss stuffing with the vegetable broth and season with salt and pepper. Cover with foil. Bake 20 minutes. Remove foil and bake 15 more, or until top is crisp and brown.
The second recipe is for a simple roasted vegetable medley. The rosemary and sage give it lots of "autumn" flavor and the sweetness of the butternut squash pairs well with the potatoes and onions. Since I love garlic, I usually roast an entire head along with the vegetables, but if you're not as hip on garlic as I am, you can reduce it. You could also substitute sweet potatoes for the butternut squash if you have them around. I love both of those vegetables so I often go back and forth between them. Apparently, you can use a vegetable peeler to peel squash (at least that's what the new issue of Vegetarian Times tells me!), so I can't wait to try that out and see if it works. If it does, I bet it's a lot easier than peeling the whole damn thing with a large knife!
Simple Roasted Vegetable Medley:
1 medium-sized butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1" cubes
1 lb. potatoes, cut into 1" cubes
1-2 onions, cut into wedges
1 head garlic, cloves peeled and crushed (I use the back of my knife)
1 Tb. minced garlic (I told you I get crazy with the stuff...)
1 tsp. rubbed sage
1 tsp. rosemary
3 Tb. oil, divided
Kosher salt and black pepper
1. Preheat the oven to 450F.
2. Toss the squash, potatoes, onion, garlic cloves, 2 Tb. oil, sage, and rosemary in a large roasting pan (a "turkey pan"). Season with salt and pepper. Roast, covered, for 25 minutes. Toss once. Add the minced garlic, and the remaining oil (if necessary).
3. Roast 25 minutes more, tossing once, until vegetables are browned on the edges and completely tender. Enjoy!
Also, feel free to add carrots and parsnips. I've never ate a parsnip. I just really like the sound of the word. Parsnip... parsnip... parrrrsnip. Anytime anybody says that word I imagine bunnies munching on them in some garden somewhere (thank you, Beatrix Potter). However, we have some parsnips (as well as carrots and turnips) in the garden. I'm kind of excited to try one! The ones you buy at the store are all woody and covered in wax, so I feel homegrown would be the best route to try them, by far!
The Fall Equinox is this Friday, September 23rd! There is still time to plan your own autumn celebration! Enjoy this traditional fall foods with copious amounts of mulled cider and red wine and I can guarantee that good times will be had!