As soon as I stepped off the plane from Alaska onto Minnesota soil, I knew fall had arrived. The day I left was a scorcher, topping 94 degrees with a sticky humidity, but none of that remained.
It’s like the universe has a way of pushing summer out when the state fair ends, and to tell you the truth, that’s about when I’m ready for it. Leggings, boots, scarves…… apples, butternut squash, parsnips…… these are some of my favorite things.
For the past couple of years I thought I wanted to move away from the “land of 10,000 lakes”. Winters are pretty brutal – not because I can’t handle the snow or cold, but because it lasts SO long.
We typically get our first snow around November 1st and they last sometime in April. That’s six months of bundling up under a cool blue sky, and the quiet air hangs forever, besides the cracks of frozen sidewalk underneath your feet.
But as I travel more, I see the beauty in my home state more than I ever have before. And I’m realizing that the change of seasons is important for my mind too, letting me internally reset and pause.
My kitchen welcomes the transformation too, creativity and exploration of what’s fresh and flourishing.But as I travel more, I see the beauty in my home state more than I ever have before. And I’m realizing that the change of seasons is important for my mind too, letting me internally reset and pause.
The weekend before I left, I picked up a bag of local apples at the farmers market, and packed several of them in my travel bag. I put the rest in the refrigerator, knowing they’d last at least a few weeks if kept cold.
Upon returning home, I pulled the apples out of the crisper, having the urge to bake and embrace the comfort of something warm. I tossed around ideas about making a crisp, crumble, slump, or buckle – all the fruit laden classics that I can never remember the definitions of.
I decided on a buckle cake, which is made in the oven and as it bakes, it buckles – the fruit lightly sinking into the batter, and the moist cake puffing up around it. My version uses apples & frozen organic blackberries, not too sweet and ultra soft thanks to the delicate balance of almond & quinoa (new to me! which I discovered can be overpowering in taste, so it really doesn’t work as a standalone) flours.
As it sits, the texture of this gluten free apple cake gets even better. Barely dense, making for the perfect bite, even allowing you to pick up a piece and eat it without a fork if you choose. The burst of flavor from the apples and berries is delightful, and I’d be lying if I said it doesn’t make a great breakfast too.
Or you can top it with date caramel swirled coconut milk ice cream like I did, and escape for just a moment into a little piece of heaven. Happy autumn my friends!