Guys I’m really excited. I’ve found another thing to love about fall! Fall. Brews. I always thought that seasonal beers boasting harvest, and pumpkin on their labels would be too dark or too strong for my tastes. Boy, was I wrong. They are so delish! I think I even like them better than summer brews. I haven’t tried Trader Joe’s Oktoberfest yet, but here’s my take on the other four.
Blue Moon Harvest Pumpkin is my favorite by far. Blue Moon is my go-to already, so I might be biased, but I loved the subtle undertones of pumpkin spice along with the always dependable Blue Moon flavor. Shock Top Pumpkin Wheat was delish, but it tasted like pretty much every other variation of Shock Top wheat (aside from their fruity flavors).
New Belgium Tour de Fall was nice. I love the label–they always have the best labels. The flavor was aaaalmsot too strong for me, but I like to think it’s broadening my palate. KBC Pumpkin Ale is a close second to the Blue Moon. The cinnamon notes were just right–not too Big Red-ish. It was like brisk fall afternoon inside my frosty mug (who am I kidding I drank it straight out of the bottle).
What are your favorite fall brews?
I’ve been trying to stay away from posting found recipes lately, since I’m not sure how much they really add to the blogosphere. And have you ever been really excited to find a new recipe on Pinterest, just to find out that it only links to a recipe you’ve already tried (and aren’t crazy about). No? Just me? Probably, I do spend an insane amount of time on Pinterest. Anyhow, I digress. What I’m trying to get at, is that I’ve made an exception and I’m posting a found recipe for these incredible cookies!
I made these last fall and took them to work to share and they got rave reviews. Like raving rave reviews. And they deserve them. They are soft, moist and perfectly spiced for a delightful pumpkin bite. And the just-sweet-enough cream cheese frosting puts them over the edge. I can’t keep them in apartment, literally. I either send them away with friends or eat them all in one sitting and have to wear sweatpants for a week. I whipped up this batch last week to finish off a dinner of hearty chili, beer bread and seasonal brews I made for Dana and Theresa while they were in town. I don’t think anyone went away hungry. So here’s the deal, you need to make these cookies. You won’t regret it. If you live within the greater Des Moines metro you could probably convince me to make another batch for you too. The recipe comes from My Baking Addiction. I followed it pretty much to the T. I only made half a batch of the frosting (powdered sugar shortage) and it was almost enough, I was left with about half dozen unfrosted cookies. In the original recipe she makes really large cookies to yield two dozen. I made standard size cookies (with a scoop) and it made a generous four dozen.
With the pumpkin-paloza in full swing (heck, it’s been in full swing in my world for a good three weeks now) it’s easy to overlook fall’s true star–apples! While I love me some pumpkin spice everything, there’s just nothing that compares to fresh crisp apples from just a few counties over. So, this fall, in addition to my ridiculous over-production of pumpkin goods I’m going to try to get some apple action in my life. Starting with this tasty snack dip.
Now, there’s not actually any caramel in this dip. But the combo of sugars, vanilla and cream cheese whips together to make a sweet, creamy dip reminiscent of a gooey dipped apple. My mom has been making this dip for fall celebrations since the beginning of time and it. is. bomb. Make it for you kids, make it for your friends, make it for your neighbors or if you’re really cool like me, crack open a seasonal brew and have a well rounded dinner of apples, dip and beer.
8 oz. cream cheese (I used 1/3 less fat)
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
Sliced apples for dipping
Mix all ingredients together in a stand mixer, or with an hand-held electric mixer. Whip on high speed until well combined and smooth. Store in the refrigerator.