Saturday, October 1, 2016

October A Month of Cooking

Now that it's October and the weather is cooler, Its time to start making reals meals and real desserts. - none of this grilled or iced stuff.It's also time for Octoberfests both in Germany and America. The month also brings Halloween parties and treats along with a celebratory tea for Samuel Taylor Coleridge's birthday.

Octoberfest is big ,especially in the German  .neighborhoods. Many restaurants such as Bahr's in New Jersey's Atlantic Highlands offers a full menu complete with rouladen and potato pancakes. It's easy to recreate any German dish. Rouladen is one of the most delicious to make. It's simply rolled flank steak that's stuffed with pickles and onions although some family recipes  sub in creamed spinach. This last is a fantastic pairing with the beef, each flavor complementing each other.Potato pancakes are another yummy October fest treat.They are labor intensive to make,especially with grating the potatoes but so worth it. Serve it with homemade apple sauce which brings up the other October activity - apple picking. This is definitely the month and the season for it. Remember there are several different types of apples. They're not all the same. Use the correct one for the recipe you want and your pies and fritters along with applesauce will turn out perfect. Apples can also be used in many German dishes too, such as roast pork..They are sliced and usually placed with onions around the roast to infuse flavor. Apple butter and apple sauce can also be used as glazes for these roasts as well as for pork chops.

Many Coleridge fans along, with most English majors, know that the third week of the month, October 21st is is the great poet's birthday. Some celebrate with a Devonshire cream tea, since he was born in the scenic county of Devonshire. Cream teas are a  wonderful combination of clotted cream, scones and jam. It's traditional for the last to be strawberry. Scones are split and one half is slathered with clotted cream,a cooked cream from Devon while the other half is covered with the strawberry jam.They're 'washed down with straight , sweetened or unsweetened black tea. Milk and cream aren't added  because they'll take away from the clotted cream. If  the cream is hard to come by (it can be bought on Amazon) then blend freshly whipped cream with sour cream and a tablespoon of confectioner's sugar.The month ends with Halloween where there's all sort of sweets and treats.This is where home chefs and bakers can explore their creative side with creating dishes such as Monster Meat Loaf or Spider Burgers - basically cooked , and split hot dogs served on a hamburger buns.Then there is Bones and Blood, breadsticks baked in the shape of bones and dipped into marinara sauce. End with Yeti cupcakes that are iced with vanilla icing and shredded coconuts. Candy eyes and fangs are added for the finishing touches.

It's October, a month of fun and feasting.It's also a time for making delicious dinners and tantalizing desserts. Celebrate the festivities with gusto.

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