Tuesday, September 24, 2013

10 Sustainable Snack Ideas for Fall

It's officially fall, you guys.

And I hate it. I hate it because I didn't spend anywhere near as much time outside as I wanted to this summer. I hate it because of how the radiator dries out my apartment without seeming to actually warm it. I hate it because, with that first yellow leaf comes last year's back-stock of plastic jack-o-lanterns in the center aisle of CVS, and after that, well, it's a slippery slope to that every-expanding, all-encompassing "Holiday Season" that everyone seems to like, or at least understand, better than I do.

What with all those first world problems in the way it's easy to forget that fall is actually my very favorite season. It's just the prettiest. And there's something about that half playful, half sinister crispness to the air that reminds you that anything is possible. Fall reminds you to be grateful for the things you have because there are no guarantees that they'll stay. In the summer a too-hot day is an excuse to stay inside watching Netflix, a rainy day is viewed as some kind of theft, and a perfect temperature day is simply taken for granted. But once the pumpkin beers and pumpkin lattes roll out, at least here in New England, every day you don't have to wear your thickest down parka is a cause for a celebration.

In the spirit of that celebration, I give 10 marvelous autumn-themed recipes/bits of food paraphernalia to serve at your Halloween party, or just for fun. And remember: one perk to the cold weather is being able to use your oven without wearing a suit of ice armor.

It just doesn't get cuter than these guys. Use your favorite gingerbread recipe, or make them as sugar cookies.

I concocted this recipe for the blog last fall and just remembered I had it. I kind of want to pair it with a new find:

Don't opt for the anise, though. Anise, is gross.

Add some chocolate chips to these to really take them to the next level. Also, they're vegan!

6. Toasted Pumpkin Seeds

This one doesn't even need a link. You can buy them pretty much anywhere this time of year, or you can make yourself a healthy snack with the guts you scoop out of your jack-o-lantern. Throw a pile of seeds onto a cookie sheet, add a little salt, and stick in the oven for a few minutes. Eat them as is, put them in salad, get creative.

Keep a dozen of these in the freezer and thaw them out before bed for a quickly grab-able breakfast.

Swap the 2 teaspoons baking powder for 1/2 baking soda and 1 1/2 cream of tartar for a corn-free variant.

Tastes Like Thanksgiving Casserole Recipe 

This seems like it would be especially useful for using up Thanksgiving leftovers, but really you could tailor it to sue any poultry and root vegetable you had lying around, right?

2. Pumpkin Waffles

Waffles beg to be slathered in maple syrup, my favorite cold-weather sweetener. Put these two leaf-changing flavors together and curl up under a blanket on a chilly morning.

1. Apple Snickerdoodle Muffins

It's hard to beat the simple, classic flavor of a snickerdoodle. Put that in muffin form and add apple? I can't wait to try that.

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