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Pesto Zucchini and Corn Quinoa Salad

Pesto Zucchini and Corn Quinoa Salad
Although fall is officially here and the days are cooling, there is still plenty of zucchini around and I wanted to give summer one last hurrah with this zucchini and corn quinoa salad with a basil pesto dressing. This salad is as easy as it sounds with the quinoa, sautéed zucchini and corn, the basil pesto dressing and I like to add some chickpeas to fill it out a bit along with some green onions and toasted pine nuts as garnish. Really all you need to do is cook the quinoa, zucchini and corn and mix everything and you are done! This pesto zucchini and corn quinoa salad makes for a great side or even a light meal and it's sure to brighten your day!

Parmesan Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Double Smoked Bacon

Parmesan Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Double Smoked Bacon
It's time for another side dish and this time it's one using one of my favourite fall green vegetables, brussels sprouts, in a parmesan roasted brussels sprouts dish. Ever since I discovered just how magical roasted brussels sprouts are I try to roast them every chance I get! Roasting the brussels sprouts brings out their flavour, mellows the slight bitterness and caramelizes the edges and those caramelized bits are the best part! This roasted brussels sprouts dish could not be easier to make, you simply slice or quarter the brussels sprouts (I prefer to slice so that there is more surface area to caramelize but quartering is quicker.), toss them in some oil along with chopped garlic, roast them, sprinkle on the parmesan and return them to the oven until the parmesan is all melted and good. Given my bacon addiction and how well bacon and brussels sprouts go together I almost always add bacon and a touch of lemon zest brightens things up a bit! In addition to being super easy to make, you can do most of the prep work a few days ahead of time and even roast the brussels sprout a few hours early and return them to the oven briefly to warm when ready to serve so this side dish is perfect for large meals like Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner!

Eggplant Parmesan Boats

Eggplant Parmesan Boats
With all of the stuffing that has been going on with the stuffed zucchini and stuffed spaghetti squash it was time that eggplant got stuffed and what better way to start than with stuffed eggplant parmesan! It seemed only natural to stuff eggplant with the flavours of a dish that eggplant is normally used in and this eggplant parmesan boat recipe, adapted from Skinny Taste, is super easy to make and packed with flavour. You pretty much just need to hollow out the eggplant, roast it, cook the sausage along with the eggplant that was scooped out before adding the marinara sauce, stuffing the eggplant, topping it with cheese and baking it until the cheese melts. Stuffing vegetables is always fun and this stuffed eggplant parmesan is a new favourite! I can't wait to see what else I can stuff eggplant with!

Spinach and Feta Mashed Cauliflower

Spinach and Feta Mashed Cauliflower
I know I seem to say this a lot but I can't believe that it is fall already and what's more is that this weekend is the Canadian Thanksgiving already! With that in mind I just had to share some Thanksgiving recipe ideas and since creative side dishes are what I enjoy most about a Thanksgiving feast I started with this spinach and feta mashed cauliflower. Mashed cauliflower is a healthy and light alternative to mashed potatoes and when you jazz them up with things like spinach and feta they become an absolute delight that could easily outshine the main on your dinner plate. The flavours in this mashed cauliflower are based on spanakopita a Greek spinach and feta phyllo pie with fresh herbs like dill and green onions. Normally mashed potatoes are made nice and creamy with the addition of heavy/whipping cream and/or sour cream, cream cheese and loads of butter but I went with creamy Greek style yogurt and a touch of butter to keep things lighter. Whether you are serving this spinach and feta mashed cauliflower at a Thanksgiving dinner or just any old weeknight dinner, they are super quick and easy and just packed with flavour!

Creamy Parmesan Tomato and Spinach Tortellini Soup

Creamy Parmesan Tomato and Spinach Tortellini Soup
With the cooling fall weather I have been thinking about soups a lot more and I started this years soup season off with this comforting creamy parmesan tomato and spinach cheese tortellini soup. This tasty soup is super easy to make and it only takes about 30 minutes so it is perfect for busy weeknight meals! You basically just need to cook the onions and garlic, add the broth, tomatoes and tortellini and simmer until the tortellini is cooked before adding the spinach and parmesan cheese. (I like to add some fresh basil at the end but this is completely optional.) With the cheese tortellini this soup is hearty enough to eat as a meal and it is perfect for those chilly nights when you just want something quick, easy, tasty and comforting!

50 Fabulous Fall Recipes

50 Fabulous Fall Recipes

Fall is officially here and that means that it is the perfect time to pull out some of my favourite fall recipes! During fall there is still plenty of amazing fresh produce around from apples to pears, pumpkins and other winter squash, brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, etc. and there are just so many great ways to enjoy them! The cooling weather also opens up new opportunities like using the oven for things like roasts and casseroles which may have been taboo during hot summer days. Of course as the weather gets even cooler soups and stews make a more prominent appearance on the table along with other comfort foods like pasta! Here are 50 of my favourite fall recipes for your inspiration and enjoyment over the coming days!

Slow Roasted Tomato Bacon Jam

Slow Roasted Tomato Bacon Jam
With all of the filed ripened tomatoes around right now it is the perfect time for making sauces but I was thinking about something a little different, a tomato jam and with bacon day coming I was thinking that a tomato jam / bacon jam hybrid would be perfect! As nice as the field ripened tomatoes are they can be made even better by roasting them to caramelize them and bring out their flavour so I threw them into the oven and slow roasted them until they were starting to shrivel up and caramelize but still juicy on the inside. (Roasting the tomatoes also allows you to use those dull and drab winter hot house tomatoes to good effect!) Up next of course was the bacon followed by some of the usual jam suspects including brown sugar and maple syrup as sweeteners, a bit of vinegar for some tang and I threw in some chipotle chilies in adobo for a touch of heat. Once everything has simmered for a while on the stove all that is left is to puree to the jam desired consistency. Of course this slow roasted tomato bacon jam is absolutely fabulous on toast topped with a fried egg for breakfast and if you are looking for other ways to use it, take a look below the recipe for some more ideas.