Fall… Somehow it makes all of us become poets. At least for a few probably the most beautiful months of the year. But the more we think about this season and the longer we enjoy its marvelous colors and smell its inimitable aromas, the better we realize that there’ll never be enough words to say how we really feel about it.

I’d associate fall with a musician, wearing a long gray woolen coat and a very long and very bright scarf. Perhaps, even with a violinist that touches very special minor chords of people’s souls.

However, music is definitely not the only one fall’s hobby. Fall is also a perfect chef! It successfully combines various textures and flavors, creating outstanding recipes for a lovely picnic in your favorite park. Whatever an occasion is: any family celebration or, maybe, Columbus Day. By the way, this year it’s on October 9th.  

Actually, there’s even no need in any particular reason for spending one warm fall day somewhere outside the territory, occupied by your daily routine. Just make sure you have a magnificent scenery before your eyes, people you love beside you, and a few tasty foods on the picnic table (or picnic blanket).

So, if everything about the first two points is clear, let’s move on to the third one now. Here we’ve selected some tempting edible ideas of a menu for your cozy and memorable day-off. Let’s check them out together!

Let’s Approach the Starters Creatively

This time we’d like to come up with some sandwiches and salad. Yeah, yeah, sounds very traditional and absolutely obvious. What can make a better appetizer for a picnic? But where’s the promised creativity then?

We’ll start with bacon-and-surprise sandwiches if you don’t mind.

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Depending on how much time you have, you can prepare them either at home or right on the spot. Four sandwiches will take you about twenty minutes. Still, we’d recommend making them before the trip. So you could save this time for enjoying the picnic scenery.

For such yield you’ll need to cut one sourdough baguette into four equal pieces. Then spread each of them with 1 tbsp. of fig preserve and top the slices with cooked bacon. Add your favorite goat cheese and about 1/2 cup arugula. Also, don’t forget to spread some mustard to taste. That’s all. Your outstanding nibbles are ready to be served and fancied.

And the truly fall salad, of course. Again, you’d better make it in advance and give it some time to acquire a wholesome flavor.

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Ingredients:

  • 6 oz. cooked chestnuts
  • 4-6 slices serrano ham
  • 3 slices crusty bread (cut it into small cubes)
  • 7 oz. cooked beetroot, peeled and diced
  • 1 eating apple
  • 2.5 oz. pack lamb's lettuce
  • 3-4 tbsp. olive oil

For the dressing you’ll need:

Directions:

1. Heat oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas. In a small roasting tin toss the cubed bread with the oil. Add salt and pepper to taste. Spread the mix out over a single layer and bake it for 12-15 min. until the bread gets browned and crisp. Tip the cooked mixture onto a plate lined with kitchen paper and leave it to cool.

2. As you start working on the dressing, mix the sliced onion with vinegar in a small bowl. Leave the mixture for 10 min. Combine the mustard and oil, add with salt and pepper. Whisk the medley until it gets slightly thickened. Stir it into the onions and set aside.

3. Tip the lettuce into a large bowl. Combine the beetroot and chestnuts. Fry the ham on a non-stick pan quickly until each side gets crisp.

4. Before serving, slice the apple thinly and add to the croutons. Add the dressing and toss everything together. Pile the salad onto 4-6 plates and set 2 pieces of fried ham on top of each.

 

2 Stunning Ideas of Mason Jarred Treats

If you’ve ever tried them, you do know how ideal for any outing they are. And if it’s the first time you’re going to explore their advantages, let’s check out these three nice sets. It’s delicious, it’s portable, and it’s a safe bet for your fall picnic!

In the lists below, which we’ve prepared for each treat, you’ll see the sequence of layers that you’ll need to make in the jars.

Variant #1. Tamale Pie

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1. Crumbled cornbread (to make it, mix up corn muffin mix, sour cream, melted butter, and one egg; bake it for 20 min. and let cool)

2. Cooked ground beef with fried onions, enchilada sauce, and your favorite spices

3. Shredded Monterey Jack cheese and Cheddar cheese, plus chopped green onions.

Variant #2. Pasta Salad

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1. Lay your favorite pasta, boiled in advance. (We recommend Italian Pasta Panarese.)

2. Add the pesto that you’d make of walnuts, Parmesan cheese, Feta cheese, tomatoes, garlic, basil, olive oil, and some pasta water (about 1/4 cup), blended together in the food processor.

3. Top with some additional cheese.

Your Main BBQ Dish for This October Day

Make something fragrant and scrumptious. Something that can warm you and your dearest from inside, making the fall day much more pleasant. – What about grilled and glazed pork chops with various garnishes? Looks like a tempting and lavish option, doesn’t it?

Okay, let’s see how to bring this culinary idea into being! We’ll start with the meat. But please note that you’ll need to keep seasoned pork in the fridge for 12-24 hours. So, make sure you’ve got enough time in reserve.

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Ingredients:

  • 4 (12 oz.) bone-in pork rib chops
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp. paprika
  • 1 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tbsp. dark brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil

For the apple-bourbon glaze:

  • 1 (12-oz.) can of frozen apple juice concentrate, thawed
  • 1 cup bourbon
  • 1 tbsp. Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 tsp. dried crushed red pepper
  • 3 tbsp. dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt

Directions:

1. Stir together the garlic powder, paprika, salt, pepper, and sugar.

2. Then brush the pork with olive oil and rub both sides with the mixture. Place the pork chops in a 9-x-13-inch baking dish; cover them and cool for 12 to 24 hours.

3. Remove the pork from the refrigerator and let it stand at room temperature for 30 min. Meanwhile, prepare the glaze by stirring and simmering all ingredients together over medium heat, except the red pepper. Add it after the glaze is ready.

You can make all these preparations at home. And below there are the further guidelines that you can follow right at the picnic place.

4. Preheat the grill to 350° to 400° heat. Grill the chops, covered with grill lid (6-8 min. on each side, until almost done). Brush them with the glaze. Turn and brush the other side with the glaze. Grill the pork, covered with grill lid (2 min.).

5. Repeat the process, without grill lid. Turning the chops every 10 seconds, until the glaze thickens and the meat is cooked through.

Of course, we can’t forget about the grilled garnishes!

Choose from the following combinations. But why choose? You can serve all of them!

  • Grilled Brussel sprouts + mustard;
    Grilled carrots + soy sauce;
    Grilled cabbage + Blue cheese dressing.

A Few Sweet Final Touches

Shakespeare was certainly right when he came up with the saying “all is well that ends well”. Without digging deeper into the philosophy of this quote, we’ll just put a few final touches to this successful menu for your next picnic and/or barbecue. We suggest choosing from simple but exceptionally delicious dainties. So, let’s see what we’ve got here. These are no-baking fruit & nut bars!

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Ingredients:

Directions:

1. Line an 8 square pan with nonstick foil. Leave some overhang on all sides.

2. Chop the dates in the food processor (they will form a ball) and transfer them to a bowl.

3. Melt the butter, honey, and vanilla in a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir occasionally, until the mixture gets combined (about 1 min.). Add it to the bowl and blend to combine.

4. Fold in the almonds, dried fruit, oats, and pumpkin seeds. Press the mixture into the prepared pan and freeze until it gets easily sliceable (about 30 min.).

5. Cut into 10-12 bars. Store them in the refrigerator until you set for the picnic trip.

 

Don’t forget to take your camera and some warm fall mood!

Marky’s wishes you a flavorful and enjoyable picnic!