Fall is my favorite season. Even with all of the excessiveness this season brings like smokey hair scent on my pillow from sitting to close to a fire pit the night before, endless raking of the leaves, cleaning out gutters and gardens, the drama of HOCO (homecoming) proposals overtaking social media, football and tailgate frenzies, pumpkin flavored everything everywhere I turn…all of the splendor of fall’s colors, temperatures, and comfort food is enough to put me in the spirit, wave my plaid scarf in the air and toast this fabulous season. Of course, we’ll need something to toast with so here are a few of my adult and family-friendly favorites!
Fall 2020 officially kicks off when Wichita Brewing Company places my favorite Yumpkin Pumpkin with spiced rimmed ale in front of me. This year this happened on the last weekend of August. Although I’m not much of a beer drinker and typically opt for a light beer—Corona, WBC’s Yumpkin Pumpkin beer takes the cake (or pie)—it is sweet and dark, not hoppy and smoothly delicious.
Chai Tea Latte
While coffee is my beverage of choice every morning, by afternoons, I try to adult by “limiting” my caffeine. However there is nothing better than a rainy afternoon of reading a good book under a chunky blanket sipping on a Chai Tea Latte. This is my absolute favorite warm beverage. I use my single serve coffee maker, add sweetner and a splash of milk or cream then froth with an electric frother until it is foamy on top. Running errands? Grab your favorite scarf and to-go ceramic travel mug!
Carry’s Cranberry Wassail
(Junior League of Wichita’s Women of Great Taste, p. 39)
If you are entertaining and looking for a fabulous twist on apple cider, this classic, easy concoction promises to please a large crowd.
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1/2 cup water
- 12 whole cloves
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 48 ounces cranberry juice
- 3 cups orange juice
- 32 ounces apple cider
- Fresh cranberries for garnish (they float!)
Combine honey, water, cloves and cinnamon in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Remove cloves and cinnamon sticks. In a 5-quart pan combine juices and honey mixture. Simmer for 1 hour. Add cranberries and serve hot.
Fall is always a fabulous time to hit wine country, but if you can’t head west this year, Jenny Dawn Cellars right here in the heart of Wichita has a fantastic Chardonnay that pairs wonderfully with a quick and easy pasta dish perfect for entertaining.