The Mouthful: October Recipe Roundup

The Mouthful: October Recipe Roundup

Welcome back, and happy autumn! The Mouthful is back in full swing this year, and what better way to ring in the new school year than with a Recipe Roundup?
This month, we’ve got seasonal booze, my favorite new way to cook eggs, some to-die-for pot pies—okay, and one pumpkin spice cookie. You knew this was coming.

Spiced pumpkin oatmeal cookies
Spiced Pumpkin-Oatmeal Cookies from CHOW

Let’s just get this out of the way. I made these cookies for our first Spectator staff meeting, and was shocked by how quickly they were devoured. Everyone asked for the recipe, and as per my promise, here it is, for them and for all of you. I omitted about half of the salt from the cookies, added some salt to the drizzle, and sprinkled a bit of sea salt on top of the cookies. I also found that the drizzle needed a higher ratio of maple syrup to milk.

Crispy egg
The Crispy Egg from Smitten Kitchen
This egg-frying technique, popularized by New York restaurateur Frank Prisinzano, gave me the willies at first. I hate the crispy, hard edges that sometimes end up on fried eggs. But my very favorite food blogger was waxing rhapsodic about the finished product, so I gave it a shot. Holy hell. Turns out that if you surrender to the crispiness—augment it, even, with plenty of olive oil—the result is divine. I’m not going to tell you how many of these I ended up eating after I made one for the first time, but rest assured, it’s not a small number.

Pancetta pot pies
Pancetta, White Bean, and Chard Pot Pies from Smitten Kitchen
I don’t usually feature two recipes from the same website in one roundup, but I’m going to go ahead and break my own rule here because I have to tell you guys about this recipe. I’ve made a lot of meals in my life—Thanksgivings and Easters and birthday dinners and so on—but when I made this dish last month (in one big casserole dish; ain’t nobody got time for fussy bowls), it immediately entered the pantheon. I think this is the perfect October meal: brimming with vegetables and not too heavy, but still comforting.

Persimmon dutch baby
Dutch Baby with Persimmons, Apples, and Pomegranate Seeds from Kinfolk
If Dutch babies are not in your regular breakfast rotation, I’m going to have to ask you to reconsider every decision you’ve ever made. They’re essentially big, puffy pancakes, made from an eggy popover-like batter and great with maple syrup, honey, or just about anything else you might be able to dig out of your fridge. This autumnal variation is topped with fresh persimmons, apples, and pomegranate arils. This recipe calls for whipped cream, but I think this would be even better—and more breakfast-appropriate—with some Greek yogurt or ricotta instead.

Mandel bread
Marzipan Mandel Bread with Cacao Nibs and Sea Salt from My Name Is Yeh
Cacao nibs and marzipan are two of what I call my “trigger ingredients”—items that, if I see them on a menu, I absolutely must order (see also: duck breast, mussels, pistachios, honeycomb). This biscotti-like mandel bread has both. Cacao nibs, which are available at Theo Chocolate and some natural markets, taste exactly nothing like you think they will. They’re much bitterer than processed chocolate, similar to very toasty nuts or even espresso beans. As a non-chocolate lover, I’m a fan.

Apple cider sangria
Apple Cider Sangria from How Sweet Eats

Sangria season is a social construct, people. There’s no reason why the divine combination of booze, fruit, and more booze can’t be tweaked to suit any season. This variation uses pinot grigio, ginger brandy, honeycrisp apples, and fresh-pressed apple cider—though I imagine hard apple cider might be even better (though incredibly potent; don’t say I didn’t warn you).