Fall Leaf Garland

I saw this on CraftGawker and thought it was such a cute and perfect diy craft for fall. This garland is really easy to make and can be completed in an afternoon. Simply cut out leaf shapes from felt, string them together on yarn, and use to decorate your space for autumn!

Materials

  • felt in assorted colors
  • yarn
  • scissors
  • marker
  • darning needle
  • card stock for leaf template

Directions

  1. Make a leaf template using the card stock. I used the print-out template provided by 86 Lemons.
  2. Using the leaf template, trace leaf shapes onto the felt using a marker. Cut out the leaves from the felt–make sure to cut inside the line, otherwise marker will show around the edges of your leaves.
  3. Thread the darning needle with yarn and sew the leaves together end to end. Continue to slide the leaves down the yarn as you go.
  4. When all the leaves are sewn together, cut the yarn from the skein and tie off each end with a single knot.

Inspired by 86 Lemons’ Felt Leaf Garland.

Portobello Quesadillas

Servings: 4 – Total Time: 35 minutes

Ingredients

  • 4 flour tortillas
  • cooking spray
  • 3 large portobello mushroom caps, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinaigrette
  • 1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1/2 cup salsa
  • Mexican cheese blend, shredded
  • green onions, thinly sliced
  • sour cream

Directions

  1. Stack tortillas and microwave at high for 1 minute. Leave in microwave to keep warm while preparing filling.
  2. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add mushrooms and sauté for 3 minutes or until tender.
  3. Add vinaigrette, beans, and salsa and cook for 5 to 6 minutes, or until liquid evaporates, stirring constantly.
  4. Spoon 1/4 bean mixture onto each tortilla. Sprinkle evenly with cheese and green onions and fold tortillas in half.
  5. Wipe skillet with paper towels and heat over medium heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Place 1 quesadilla in the pan and cook for 2 minutes on each side or until golden and cheese melts. Repeat with remaining quesadillas.
  6. Cut each quesadilla into 3 wedges and serve with sour cream.

Adapted from Cooking Light’s Fresh Food Fast.

Guacamole and Tortilla Chips

This recipe was inspired by leftover flour tortillas that I decided to use to make tortilla chips!

Ingredients

For the Guacamole:

  • 3-4 ripe avocados
  • 1 medium tomato
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/8 cup lime juice
  • 1/4 cup red onion, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper

For the Tortilla Chips:

  • tortillas
  • cooking spray
  • salt

Directions

For the Guacamole:

  1. Cut each avocado lengthwise in half, twist to separate the halves, and remove the seed. Using a spoon, scoop out avocado pulp into a bowl. Mash with a fork.
  2. Chop tomato and place onto a paper towel to soak up some of the juices.
  3. Add minced garlic, lime juice, chopped red onion, salt, black pepper, and chopped tomato. Stir until mixed.

For the Tortilla Chips

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. Cut tortillas into chip-sized triangular sections.
  3. Arrange tortilla triangles in a single layer on a baking sheet. Spray both sides of tortilla triangles with cooking spray and sprinkle with salt. Bake for 5-7 minutes, or until chips start to brown. Repeat for remaining tortilla triangles.

Adapted from 86 Lemons’ The Very Best Guacamole recipe and What’s Cooking America’s Baked Tortilla Chips recipe.

Caramelized Onion Grilled Cheese

Servings: 4  –  Total Time: 45 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • pinch of sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • pinch of black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground thyme
  • 1 tablespoon white cooking wine
  • 8 slices sourdough bread
  • sliced Provolone cheese

Directions

  1. Heat olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add sliced onions to skillet with a pinch of sugar, salt, and black pepper. Stir well. Cook the onions, stirring occasionally, until golden brown.
  2. Stir in thyme and cook for about 1 minute. Increase heat to medium-high, add cooking wine, and stir frequently until most of the liquid has cooked off.
  3. To assemble the sandwiches, evenly distribute the caramelized onions over 4 slices of bread. Top with Provolone cheese and remaining bread slices. Grill the sandwiches over medium-high heat with the same skillet used to caramelize the onions, turning once and heating until the bread is lightly browned on each side and the cheese is melted.

Adapted from Annie’s Eats’ French Onion Grilled Cheese recipe.

Tortelloni Pasta Salad

Servings: 4  –  Total time: 25 minutes

Ingredients

  • 13 ounces rainbow five-cheese tortelloni
  • 2 cups sliced asparagus
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 6 ounces fresh baby spinach
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • shredded Parmesan cheese
  • toasted pine nuts

Directions

  1. Prepare tortelloni according to package directions. Add asparagus during last 3 minutes of cooking. Drain pasta and asparagus.
  2. While pasta cooks, heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add garlic and sauté 1 minute. Add spinach, salt, and pepper. Cook 3 minutes or until spinach wilts.
  3. Combine pasta mixture and spinach mixture in a large bowl. Add lemon juice and toss gently. Top servings evenly with Parmesan cheese and nuts.

Slightly adapted from Cooking Light’s Fresh Food Fast.

Ghirardelli Brownies

After tasting these, you won’t ever want to make brownies from a box again. These brownies are chocolately, fudgey perfection!

Servings: 16 brownies  –  Total time: 1 hour 15 minutes

Ingredients

  • 4 ounces Ghirardelli Semi-Sweet Chocolate Baking Bar
  • 1 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (use the real stuff!)
  • 3/4 cup + 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup Ghirardelli Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter and flour an 8 x 8 inch pan.
  2. In a saucepan, melt chocolate bar and butter over low heat, stirring until smooth.
  3. Remove pan from heat. Cool chocolate and butter mixture to room temperature.
  4. Stir in brown sugar and vanilla. Add eggs and mix well.
  5. In a bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, and salt. Slowly fold in flour mixture and mix well. Stir in chips, pour batter in pan, and bake for 25-35 minutes.

Slightly adapted from Ghirardelli’s Classic Brownies recipe.

Single-Serve Margherita Pizza

Servings: 4  –  Total time: 35 minutes

Ingredients

  • 4 pitas
  • 4 roma tomatoes
  • 4 teaspoons olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 8 tablespoons shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
  • Italian seasonings
  • salt
  • basil leaves

Directions

For 1 pizza:

  1. Preheat oven to 425°F.
  2. Slice tomato and place on a paper towel to soak up some of the juice.
  3. Brush 1 teaspoon olive oil over pita bread. Sprinkle pizza with Italian seasonings, 1 tablespoon Parmesan cheese, and 1/4 cup mozzarella cheese. Arrange tomato slices on top, sprinkle with 1 tablespoon Parmesan cheese, 1/4 cup mozzarella cheese, 1/2 teaspoon garlic, and a pinch of salt.
  4. Bake pizza on a baking sheet for 7 minutes. Add fresh basil leaves and bake for another 3 minutes or until cheese starts to brown.
  5. Repeat for remaining pizzas.

Adapted from The Craving Chronicles’ Margherita Pita Pizza for One.