FINALLY, I FEEL a touch of cool in the air. Could it be true or is it just my imagination? I may even see a hint of rust, garnet and yellow colors in the trees. It’s fall and it’s time to eat the season.
A crisp breeze blows and my mind begins to contemplate the possibilities. I am buzzing with creative and productive energy. From girlfriends’ annual weekend at the beach to farm to table dinner with new neighbors, holiday season is just around the corner. Fall is the time for any excuse for alfresco dining with Foodies and Friends. I love the menu planning and preparation as much as sharing food with friends.
Think back on your most memorable outdoor eating experiences—rooftop dining, intimate, lush courtyards (think Bayona), sidewalk cafés (people watching in Paris while sipping an afternoon espresso), patios, or simply your own backyard. One of the finest memories I have of backyard dining was in Havana at a paladar.
Paladares are the counterparts to state run restaurants in Cuba and are mom and pop style cafés that are many times located in someone’s home or backyard. In this case, a cabbie dropped us off in a neighborhood in Havana and discreetly pointed us in the direction of a nondescript gate that opened into a secret garden filled with mystery, candlelight and authentic Cuban cuisine. I can still smell the garlicky, fresh-caught fish the proprietor grilled over the open wood fire. Why is it that everything seems to taste better when prepared and served outdoors?
Every year in the fall, I organize a beach trip to the Florida panhandle with my girlfriends. Menu planning is at the top of the list. I think back affectionately on the memorable meals shared with friends at the beach last year as I begin to plan the carte for our upcoming trip.
Dianne’s Fall Vegetable Frittata, Joanne’s Butternut Squash Soup and Carol’s Autumn Arugula Salad say fall with rich tastes, textures and vibrant colors. Don’t forget dessert. “Peaches” makes dozens of Deep Dark Chocolate Cookies that are unparalleled for those of us that are insatiable chocoholics. These warm and hearty seasonal foods feed your body and soul with powerful nutrients and comfort.
I am counting the days. It’s not too early, to “Eat the Season” and cook up some of these fall inspired recipes with Foodies and Friends.
For recipes discussed in this blog post, click on the photos below: