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Fall Food from a Guest Blogger!

I've asked Emily, my foodie sister-in-law, to do a special guest blogger entry on some of her favorite fall recipes.  Check it out!

I am excited to be the guest blogger on Everyday Clever this week!  Fall is my favorite season, and I have been pouring over seasonal recipes the last few weeks.  Jenna asked me to supply some easy, delicious recipes, and I can think of none easier than the following chili recipe.  One reason I love it is because there are no measuring cups involved- all you will need is a can opener!  My friend Sue gave me this recipe after I heard her daughter raving about it as a family favorite.
Sue's Fall Chili Recipe
1 can tomato paste
1 can tomato sauce
1 can seasoned diced tomatoes
1 can Bush's Chili beans
1 package chili seasoning
1 lb hamburger
1 onion, diced
Brown the ground beef, and season with salt, pepper, and a little garlic salt to taste.  Put all the ingredients in a crockpot and cook on low for four hours.  Voile!  Serve with rice or cornchips, green onions, sour cream, and shredded cheese.   
Fall is the peak time for fresh apples, and I could not blog about fall recipes without including apples.  I do not live far from Erwin, TN, the home of an annual Apple Festival every October.  The event offers handmade crafts, antiques, entertainment, contests and a smorgasbord of food--- but the star of the event is (of course) apples!  I came across this recipe last year at the Apple Festival.  Delicious!  You really can't go wrong with any quick recipe that includes a can of refridgerated crescent rolls anyway. 

Apple Twist Bake 
2 large apples, peeled & cored
1 can refrigerator crescent dinner rolls
2 tbsp. butter, melted
1/4-1/3 c. sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 c. orange juice
Cut each apple into 8 slices. Unroll crescent roll dough and separate into 8 triangles. Cut each in half lengthwise to make 16 triangular strips. Place an apple piece at wide end of each strip and roll up. Arrange in 9 inch square pan. Drizzle with butter. Sprinkle with mixture of sugar and cinnamon. Pour orange juice in the pan, but not over dumplings. Bake at 400 degrees for 30-35 minutes or until apples are tender. Serve warm - plain or with ice cream.

The last recipe that I want to share is a beautiful carrot cake, originally posted on one of my favorite foodie blogs Orangette.  The flavors are a tribute to fall, but this recipe is also a tribute to Jenna.  I know she loves carrot cake- it was even her wedding cake choice! I thought it would be an appropriate recipe to share with her Everyday Clever readers.  It is not as simple as the chili or the apple twists, but it is well worth the time investment in celebration of the fall season.  Enjoy!

Classic Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

For the cake:
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour

2 (slightly heaping) tsp. baking powder
2 (slightly heaping) tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
½ tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
¾ tsp. ground ginger
1 ½ cups sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
4 large eggs
½ cup unsweetened applesauce
3 cups finely grated peeled carrots
1 cup pecans, chopped (optional)

For the frosting:
2 (8-oz.) packages cream cheese, at room temperature
½ cup (4 oz. / 1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 ¼ cups powdered sugar, or to taste
3 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. lemon juice

Position racks in the top and bottom third of the oven, and preheat to 325°F. Lightly grease 3 (9-inch) round pans with butter or cooking spray. Line the bottom of the pans with parchment paper, and then grease the paper too.

In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger. Whisk well to blend.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the sugar and oil until combined. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well to incorporate after each addition. Add the applesauce, beating to mix. Add the flour mixture, and beat to incorporate, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula if needed. Add the carrots and the pecans, and beat briefly.

Divide the batter evenly between the prepared pans, 30-40 minutes. Cool the cakes in their pans on a wire rack for 15 minutes; then turn them out onto the rack to cool completely.

When the cakes are cool, make the frosting. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter and the cream cheese on medium speed until smooth. Sift in the powdered sugar, and beat on low speed until incorporated. Add the vanilla and the lemon juice, and beat well to incorporate.

To assemble the cake, place one layer on a platter or cake stand. Spread it with ¾ cup frosting. Carefully place another layer atop it. Spread with ¾ cup frosting. Top with the third cake layer, and then spread the remaining frosting over the top and down the sides. Serve at room temperature.

Now Get Cookin'!


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