The term “basic” does not begin to describe how much I absolutely love fall, guys. The second the chill hits the air, I am switching out my summer wardrobe, breaking out the fall decor, and buying anything that somewhat resembles a pumpkin, taste like a pumpkin and smells like a pumpkin. Unfortunately, living in Texas, the chilled air only lasts for about five minutes before we go back to our permanent sauna state of weather.
This year though, after ample amounts of rain, we were blessed with true fall weather, and you can bet that I am indulging in the season in any way that I can.
One way I love celebrating this time of year is by cooking and baking seasonal recipes. Anyone that knows me knows that I am always cooking soup. It’s so easy to make, filling, and can feed an army for any kind of hosting you plan on doing. I thoroughly enjoy hosting, and I really love making recipes that yield large portions. One of my favorite things to do is cook for the people I love, especially if it’s seasonal. I grew up with an Italian mother and her Cajun best friend next door- there was always an abundance of food, and an abundance of people breaking bread and loving life. I wouldn’t have had it any other way!
A lot of my recipes come from fellow bloggers, but the ones I am posting today are coming from my own personal cooking experiences. I am going to post two different recipes- one sausage bake recipe, and one soup recipe- Both perfect for fall weather and incredibly easy to make!
Sausage Veggie Bake
8 links of your favorite sausage (I strongly recommend using Opa’s Jalapeno & Cheese Sausage- you can find it at Central Market)
2 lbs of Okra (We have also used Brussels Sprouts before)
1 Butternut Squash (We have used sweet potatoes too)
2 Tbsp of Olive Oil
Salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat your oven for 400 degrees
- Microwave the butternut squash for 30 seconds to make it tender
- Peel and dice the squash and place it evenly on a baking pan (the smaller the dices, the better)
- Drizzle the olive oil, and sprinkle some salt and pepper on the diced butternut squash Put it in the oven for about 15 minutes
- While the butternut squash is cooking, dice the okra and slice the sausage.
- When the butternut squash (or sweet potatoes) are done, evenly place the sausage and the okra on the pan. I typically put a little more salt and pepper for the okra, but the sausage does most of the work for the flavor.
- Let the bake cook for about 20 minutes, mix it around, and then let it cook for about 25 more minutes.
- If you like the sausage crispy, you can cook it for longer.
The Coziest Tortilla Soup
This recipe comes from my Godmother, Ana (Also one of my mother’s closest and dearest friends!) She sent me this recipe in college and quite frankly, I haven’t found a better tortilla soup recipe. When I asked her if i could feature her on here, she told me to run with it, so here we are! Thanks pretty lady!
6 corn tortillas
1/2 cup chopped onion
2 cloves of garlic, minced
2 boneless skinless chicken breasts cut into 1/2 pieces ((I have used both raw and rotisserie chicken-either work!) )
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp cayenne pepper
3 c chicken broth
3 plum tomatoes
1/2 c tomato sauce
6 oz shredded cheese
1/2 c scallions
1. Fry and drain strips of tortillas (optional, but makes all the difference)
2. Saute onions & garlic in 2 tsp oil over medium heat. (Dice tomatoes and chives while onions and garlic are being cooked)
3. Add chicken until browned.
4. Stir in cumin & cayenne cook 1 minute.
5. Add broth and tomatoes and tomato sauce, bring to a boil.
6. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
7. Top with cheese and scallions (sour cream is optional)
As professionals, we are in a constant battle with time. Fortunately, these recipes are super easy, (somewhat) healthy, and will give you portions for several days. Please let me know if they make it to your kitchen, I truly do want to hear how they turn out. Happy eating and HAPPY FALL!