Tag Archives: fall

November 2012 Review

And we’re back with the monthly reviews on Fifth Floor Kitchen!  What photos did I capture on my iPhone this past month?

Interested in past months?  Check them out: May June July August

November Review 1

This was taken on our last day of our honeymoon in Phuket, Thailand.  Check out our posts about it here.

November Review 2

First week back from our honeymoon and we were excited for food from the farmer’s market!  We got: arugula, turnips, a pie pumpkin, apples, pears, sweet potatoes, cheese & eggs from the Penn Quarter Farmer’s Market.

November Review 3

Don’t know what to eat for breakfast?  Check out this post on making Fall Granola- perfect to mix with yogurt or milk!

November Review 4

Sam and I visited our friend Beth in Baltimore.  We loved this place: Abbey Burger Bistro, make your own burger (and it’s got some good beers as well).

November Review 6

While in Baltimore we stopped by the Baltimore Farmer’s Market & Bazaar (check out the post about it here).  Sam pickled the cucumbers, and we enjoyed the spicy cheese & duck eggs.  But the honey butter is the best- have you had honey butter?  If not, you’re missing out!

November Review 5

My friend Alix and I got a chance to see Deb Perelman from Smitten Kitchen!  There were so many people at Politics & Prose to see her!  Checkout her cookbook and blog for some great recipes!

November Review 7

We have 2 cats who have really enjoyed getting wedding gifts.  Well, mostly the boxes that the gifts come in- Van Gogh loves to relax among the bubble wrap and paper!  One of the many gifts was a cookbook- and we tried this Shepherd’s Pie recipe!

November Reivew 8

Another Penn Quarter Farmer’s Market week!  The goodies were: bok choy, yogurt (to go with Fall Granola), broccoli, cheese, apples, pear and arugula!

November Review 9

Last May, when I attended Eat, Write, Retreat (check out my post about it) I met a lot of wonderful bloggers.  One of them was Olga (blog: Mango & Tomato; Twitter: @MangoTomato), we tried out the new DGS Delicatessen in Dupont Circle for lunch, and I had a delicious Salmon Pastrami Sandwich on a bagel.

November Review 10

As I mentioned, we had a low-key Thanksgiving.  After running the So Others Might Eat Turkey Trot 5K- Sam, myself and his brother went to Hill Country Barbecue for an all-you-can-eat dinner.  As always, Hill Country did not disappoint!  Although my favorite was the green bean casserole- it’s been so long since I’ve had it!

November Review 11

The past week’s Penn Quarter Farmer’s Market finds were: eggs, turnips, cheese, pears, eggs & meat sticks!

Fall Granola

Everyone is running around to finish up their Thanksgiving shopping list- it’s a little hectic!  Although Thanksgiving may not be one of my favorite holidays (my Birthday is #1), it’s definitely up there near the top.  It’s the one time out of the year that everyone considers what/who they are grateful for, and shares the day with loved ones.

Sam and I will be staying in D.C.- after a long honeymoon, our annual leave has to be replenished.  We’re starting off Thursday morning with a Turkey Trot- it’s been our little tradition since we first started dating.  We’ll be running the So Others Might Eat Turkey Trot 5K!  Are any of you running tomorrow?

Since all of us may be eating too much during the day, I thought a great way to start the morning would be with some fall granola!

The fall flavors in this granola are slight, and a perfect pairing with Greek yogurt, or mixed with fresh milk.  This recipe is very flexible- if you don’t have a specific ingredient, feel to swap what you do have in your cupboards this fall day.

Fall Granola
Adapted from: Eat, Live, Run

1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp allspice
1 tbsp unsalted butter
2 cups raw pumpkin seeds
1/4 cup honey
1 tbsp brown sugar
4 cups old fashioned oats
1 tsp salt
1 cup maple syrup
3 tbsp coconut oil
1 cup dried cranberries

In a small bowl mix together the cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and allspice to make the spice mix.  Set aside.

On a skillet, over medium heat, melt the butter.  Then add the pumpkin seeds and 1 tsp of the spice mix.  Toast seeds for about 3 minutes, or until they are lightly browned.  Then add the honey and brown sugar.  Continue to cook until they are incorporated, for another 3-4 minutes.  Next, spread out the seeds onto a sheet tray, allowing it to cool for at least 15 minutes.  Once it’s cooled off, break it apart using a spatula.

In a large bowl mix together the rest of the spice mix, oats and salt.

Add the maple syrup and coconut oil into a small saucepan over high heat.  First, bring to a boil and then simmer for an additional 2 minutes- continue to stir.  Pour the maple syrup sauce over the oats mixture into the large bowl.  Toss well until everything is evenly coated.

Preheat the oven to 325ºF.  Spread out the oats onto a sheet try (or two).  Bake for 25-30 minutes, moving and flipping the oats every 5 minutes.  Allow the oats to cool.

Lastly, toss the pumpkin seeds, oats mixture and dried cranberries together.  Eat it as a snack, or over yogurt.

Food Matters Project #29: Apples, Blue Cheese & Honey

It’s another great recipe idea from Mark Bittman’s Food Matters Cookbook.  This weeks Food Matters Project was chosen by Jessica.  Jessica’s blog is Cheese Please, check out her version of today’s dish- Cheddar Cheese and Almond Nut Balls.  Also see what other cheese recipes everyone else made: Cheese-Nut Balls.

As I’ve mentioned before, it’s a little hectic and slightly stressful around here.  So upon reading Mr. Bittman’s recipe and seeing pear and blue cheese, I decided to take this in a completely different direction.  Yes, no cheese balls- more like a perfect cheese relaxation plate!

Sam stopped by our favorite cheese store- Cowgirl Creamery, and picked up a giant block of Colston Bassett Stilton.  We had some leftover apples from the Penn Quarter Farmer’s Market, as well as some local honey.

When was the last time you had bought yourself a nice block of cheese?  Not when guests come over to serve as an appetizer, but just for yourself to indulge and enjoy?  If you can’t remember the last time- then do this tomorrow.  You will not be disappointed.  This was a wonderful way to wind down after a hectic week.

I know there are some of you out there that don’t enjoy blue cheese.  If you’re one of them- definitely grab another type that you’d prefer.  Blue cheese does have specific taste- and this tangy flavor blended well with the sweet honey and crisp fall apples.


Apples, Blue Cheese & Honey
Inspired by: Cheese-Nut Balls from The Food Matters Cookbook (pg 56)

This is more of a suggestion, rather than a recipe.  The amount of apples, cheese, honey or walnuts are entirely up to you.  You can add/swap something else, just enjoy some amazing cheese (pears, crackers).

apples, cored & thinly sliced
Stilton or any variety of blue cheese
honey
walnuts (optional)

Pour a drop or two of honey onto a slice of apple.  First sprinkle cheese onto the apple slice, then top it off with some chopped walnuts.

Eggplant Greek Wraps

The weather has cooled off and we’ve been able to open our windows.  Not just during the night, but also throughout the day- enjoying the light crisp air. Fall is here.

If you have never experienced fall in Virginia, you’re missing out.  It’s a beautiful area for color changes on trees, sunny crisp weather- perfect for wine tastings or apple picking.  The beauty of it all definitely swayed us into choosing a fall wedding- great excuse to enjoy the scenery.

So with a wedding just around the corner, it’s a bit busy in this household.  Just last minute things, but it’s those little activities that turn out to take some extra time.  These days our lunches and dinners are simple- something that doesn’t require too much time or thinking.  But we would still like to eat healthy, enjoying the last of summer harvest and the start of fall flavors.  I love this time of the year- a perfect transition of my two favorite seasons.

This is a meal that you can take with you on a weekend picnic, or just a quick mid-week meal that you can enjoy.  Eggplant is fantastic with Mediterranean flavors- light, but filling.  Just grab a glass of wine and enjoy your surroundings- watch those colors change!

What is your favorite season, or time of the year?

Eggplant Greek Wraps
Adapted from: Vegetarian Times (June 2000)

1 eggplant, chopped into 1-inch pieces
6 garlic cloves, minced
2-3 tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 cup chopped tomatoes
30 kalamata olives, halved
1 cucumber, chopped
1/2 red onion, chopped
1/4 cup chopped parsley

Preheat the oven to 450ºF.  On a cookie sheet spread out the eggplant and 3 minced garlic cloves.  Then pour over the olive oil and sprinkle the dried basil, salt and pepper.  Using your hands, mix all of the ingredients together.  Bake for about 30 minutes.

In a large bowl mix together: eggplant and garlic mixture, the additional 3 garlic cloves, tomatoes, kalamata olives, cucumber, red onion and parsley.  Stir all of the ingredients together.

Fall weather & activities!

When you get a chance, check out and Like the Fifth Floor Kitchen Facebook page!  You’ll know of new blog posts even faster!

I hope all of you have gone apple picking or carved pumpkins.

And if you’re living in the DC area- wine tasting!

I’ve been lucky enough over the last couple of weekends to do a little bit of everything.  Fall is wonderful in Virginia, leaves turn wonderful colors and the weather is perfectly crisp.  Is it like that where you live?

It’s always fun to carve pumpkins…

…and then eat the seeds!

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds*

olive oil
salt
pepper

Preheat the oven to 375°F.  After taking out all of the pumpkin seeds out of the pumpkin, rinse them off.  Then spread them out on a cooking sheet.  Pour olive oil over the pumpkin seeds, and mix it together so each seed is covered with olive oil.  Then sprinkle salt and pepper over the pumpkin seeds.  Mix all of the ingredients together once more.

Bake it in the oven for about 20 minutes.  Keep checking on the seeds, once they are golden brown they are ready.  Take them out of the oven and let them cool off.  Enjoy!

*There are no specifics for this recipe.  This all depends how many seeds you have and how much salt/pepper you like.