Harvest Apple Chai Muffins

Eat Well Edibles Recipe

Autumn is my season, and back home in the Wisconsin, it’s the most splendid season of all.

One of the traditions I miss most is driving north along country roads to the rolling, tree-dotted hills of The Little Farmer Orchard in Pipe. Rows and rows of apple trees as far as the eye can see. Twisted branches stretching skyward like gnarly fingers, each drooping slightly under the weight of juicy, white-fleshed Cortlands. A dazzling display of autumnal beauty.

Memories of these orchard afternoons are always on my mind come October. An apple-y sweet does nicely to satisfy some of the nostalgic longings. Traditionally this is an apple crisp with vanilla and lots of walnuts, but this year I dreamed up a spiced multi-grain apple muffin instead. (There’s still plenty of apple season to bake a tray of that crisp.)

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Almond Ginger Coconut Macaroons

Eat Well

For 99% of the year I am firmly set in a rhythm of predawn wake-ups — obssesed with watching the sun rise — and tucked inbed weellllll before midnight. The other one percent I trade my stalking of daybreak for inky nighttime skies when the moon puts on a remarkably super show.

November’s full “Beaver/Frost” moon earlier in the week was the second of three consecutive supermoons of this year. The supermoon occurs when a new or full moon is at its closest approach to Earth in orbit — normally a distance of about 238,900 miles, the gap narrowed on Monday by more than 17,000 miles. A phenomenon not seen for 68 years!

In addition to being closer and brighter, the full supermoon is a fittingly autumnal amber upon rising, then fades to the usual buttery white as it climbs higher. Though dense, low cloud cover obstructed my views on Monday and Tuesday, I did catch a glimpse of the creamy, almost-full giant as it set behind a stand of tall loblolly pines early Sunday morning.

Maybe it was sleep deprivation, but my mind wandered as I watched, conjuring visions of golden coconut macaroons. Perfectly domed and big enough to fill the palm of my hand. #superm[acar]oons

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Cream Scones with Fresh Figs, Cardamom and Black Pepper

Eat Well Edibles Grow Well Recipe

Nine years ago this September, my parents and I set off in the early morning hours down the interstate. Minneapolis — grad school + dietetic internship — or bust. Suitcases, boxes, and bags filled with far too many belongings for my new garden-level studio were deftly organized into the two cars by my father, our packing engineer. Thoughtfully, he left enough room for myself, a very large coffee, and a parting gift from my mother: her extra copy of The Fannie Farmer Cookbook.

Being in the kitchen is more than a passion and reminder of loved ones who helped make it so, but, for me, also a stress reliever. And though my subterranean shoebox boasted nothing beyond the basics — refrigerator, sink, an appropriately tiny gas oven/stove, and literally zero counter space — cooking, along with walks and the best café miel, was my delicious escape from reality. My smart mum, she just knew that Marion Cunningham’s classic would keep me well fed. And sane.

Fannie and I got on instantly, and she remains an anchor cookbook to this day. I have made so many of her recipes, both as printed and as variations on a theme, with honestly not one failure. Or at least not a failure on her part — burning my palm almost to the third degree on a metal skillet handle and destroying its contents was not instructed. The signs of heavy use are plain to see in the cracked spine (apologies, lots of love), spattered pages (decoration), scribbled notes (words of praise), and the occasional small cloud of flour that falls when opened to certain pages (baking pixie dust).

Scone cut-outs_HGN

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