Saturday, October 22

Sassy Sloppy Joes & other fall foods

Happy fall to ya. 

I love this time of the year even when the weather is misbehaving and we are still getting mid to high 90s  and its still hot during the day. Our leaves do change color and drop so we can crunch them on our walks but thats more of a winter thing here in southern az. Something we don't have to wait for is the yummy fall flavors like sweet or tart apples, sweet & earthy squash, grassy fresh zucchini, and of course pumpkin. 

So far this fall I have updated my old apple walnut coffee cake. I usually make it several times during fall and winter but needed something healthier this year. Let me tell you this updated version of apple walnut coffee cake is even better than the original! It's so moist and tasty I had trouble not going back for seconds. So when I calculated the nutritional info I made each serving huge so you could go back for seconds or cut yourself a huge piece to go with your coffee. Its really that good. You're welcome :) 

We've enjoyed some squash and zucchini. This is a good time of year to sneak in those healthy abundant fall veggies plus its easy on the waist and the wallet. Two fall veggie recipes that you should check out are my super tasty Pork & Squash Curry, that I have made twice in the last month and some Amazing Zucchini Cheeseburgers (partially amazing because unless you're tearing apart the burger its not really noticeable & because the zucchini keeps the burger moist and delicious even when cooking the burger to well done). 

The other great thing about fall is all the great comfort food... like these sassy sloppy joes. Its getting dark quicker these days. There's nothing like coming in from a busy day to a filling slightly messy fun meal like sloppy joes. Everyone had them growing up and this slightly sassy version has amazing flavor and is a easy make ahead meal and even freezable. Yup. I made mine on a weekend and served it 2 days later and it was perfect. 

Heres the recipe - enjoy your fall! 

Sassy Sloppy Joes
Serves 3-4 adults (easily doubled) 
adapted from book:

1/4 cup onion finely diced 
1/2 Tbs butter, unsalted 
1 lb ground beef
3-4 oz ketchup (I just estimated half of my bottle) 
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup celery finely diced 
1/2 Tbs lemon juice
1/2 Tbs brown sugar
3/4 tsp coco aminos (its what I used in the place of worcestershire sauce)  
3/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp or so pepper
1/8 - 1/4 tsp dry mustard
4 hamburger buns or large soft round rolls

easy directions:

1. in a medium size skillet with a lid (something with medium high sides makes it easier) sauté the onion in the butter
2. add the ground beef and cook until about half way done
3. drain off excess fat/liquid
4. add in the rest of the ingredients 
5. simmer for 30 minutes covered then its done! 

if making it ahead cool it completely and store in the fridge for 2-4 days. Reheat it slowly until its bubbling and hot with 1/4- 1/2 cup of water. Stir often. Serve with hamburger buns or rolls. 

if freezing cool it completely and put it in a freezer gallon bag flat getting as much air out as possible. If you put a sheet pan on top of it it will freeze flatter and take up less space.  Should be good in the freezer for up to 3 months. Defrost the day before you need it in the fridge. Reheat it slowly until its bubbling and hot with 1/4- 1/2 cup of water. Stir often. Serve with hamburger buns or rolls. 

if you are serving it that day serve it as soon as it done simmering with hamburger buns or rolls and a fun side like watermelon, corn on the cob, fries, chips, fresh veg or salad. 

Wishing you a happy healthy fall with all the flavors and comforts of the season

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