Garden Plate: Fall Recipes That Evoke ‘Sugar and Spices and Everything Yummy’

Garden Plate: Fall Recipes That Evoke 'Sugar and Spices and Everything Yummy'

Pumpkin spice has become the flavor of fall, pollinating everything from cornflakes to our lattes. This flavor profile is much richer than just a side note. In October, let’s take a walk around the world to see what savory inspirations there are for “sugar and spice and all things tasty.”

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This soup is a snap to make and has its roots in the warm hug of Vietnamese Pho. Use this recipe as a base and garnish as extensively as you like.


Servings: 4

1 teaspoon olive oil

3 cloves garlic, peeled and finely chopped

1 inch ginger, peeled and finely chopped

1 cinnamon stick

3 pieces star anise

1 onion, peeled

1 bay leaf

9 cups beef stock (try to get low or low sodium)

1 pack of rice noodle sticks

1 pound thinly sliced ​​chicken or lean beef

1 bunch scallions, trimmed and sliced, both green and white parts

Soy sauce to taste (about 1 teaspoon to start, add more if needed)

Additional garnish ideas:

1 cup finely grated carrots

1 cup chopped bok choy

4 poached eggs

coriander, chopped

Mint or basil leaves

In a large Dutch oven or pot, over medium heat, saute oil along with garlic and ginger until fragrant, stirring constantly, about 2 minutes. Add stock, cinnamon, star anise, onion and bay leaf. Simmer uncovered for about 20 minutes, lowering the heat if necessary. Add sliced ​​chicken or beef and simmer for about 5 minutes. Remove from fire. Remove the cinnamon stick, star anise and bay leaf. Place the rice noodle sticks in a shallow pan, cover with boiling water and let them soften for about 3 minutes. Remove and drain. Add to the soup, stir in the spring onions. Add soy sauce to taste and serve.

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The chill in the air beckons the slow cooker to make its annual appearance. Using a slow cooker to make this hearty beef stew makes it so much more convenient for a busy household, and if the meat was browned the night before, all the easier for a weeknight meal.


Servings: 4

1 teaspoon olive oil

1 cup all-purpose flour

Salt and pepper to taste

1.5 pounds beef chuck/pot roast, cut into 2 inch pieces

4 cups beef stock (use low or no sodium if possible)

1 cup dry red wine

1 onion, peeled and finely chopped

One 14 ounce can of crushed tomatoes

1 teaspoon brown sugar

1 tablespoon tomato paste

1 cinnamon stick

3 cloves

3 bay leaves

Place oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat. In a large bowl, season flour with salt and pepper. Dry the beef cubes well with kitchen paper and dip them in the flour, shaking off the excess. Bake the coated cubes until browned all over, turning frequently. Remove to the bowl of a slow cooker and cook in batches so as not to crowd the pan. Once all the beef cubes are browned, add the stock and wine to the sauté pan, scraping up any browned bits. Bring to a boil and add to the slow cooker bowl along with the rest of the ingredients. Cover and set on high for 5 hours or until cooked through. Serve with orzo, pasta or rice.

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This recipe has some French traits but with a vegan twist. The old-school bechamel sauce has been reinvented as a lighter (and healthier) version with the same flavor notes.


Servings: 4

For the vegetables:

4 cups broccoli florets, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces

2 cups cauliflower florets, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces

For the sauce:

3 tablespoons olive oil

3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

2 cloves garlic, peeled and finely chopped

5 cups almond, soy, or other vegan non-dairy milk product

Salt and pepper to taste

½ teaspoon ground nutmeg or several generous gratings of a dried nutmeg nut


½ cup breadcrumbs

Place the vegetables in a casserole that holds about 8 cups.

To make the sauce:

In a medium saucepan over medium heat, fry oil and flour together to form a paste. Keep stirring and cooking until it is a light, golden brown color. Add garlic and stir for 1 more minute. Add the milk product and beat until smooth.

Preheat the oven to 375°F.

To assemble and bake:

Season and pour over the vegetables. Sprinkle with breadcrumbs and bake, uncovered, on the center shelf until browned and vegetables are tender, about 20 minutes.

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