Favorite Fall Recipes

Cozy fall food is my favorite! Here’s a roundup of my favorite simple recipes for the season:

Frock Files | Favorite Fall Recipes

Maple Apple Tart | One of the easiest recipes ever! When people drop by, I can whip one of these up almost as quickly as a couple of cappuccinos.

Frock Files | Favorite Fall Recipes

Pumpkin Mochi | This is a twist on traditional Hawaiian butter mochi! For those who are gluten-free, this recipe is a great way to enjoy a pumpkin cake without missing the wheat flour.

Frock Files | Favorite Fall Recipes

Pumpkin “Pop Tarts” | Using pie crust and pumpkin pie filling, you can have a pumpkin filled breakfast hand pie in just a matter of minutes. Kids love helping out with these!

Frock Files | Favorite Fall Recipes

Mom’s Apple Butter | While apple butter can be complicated, this one is so, so, so simple and delicious. To make it, just cook the apples, mash, and season.

Frock Files | Favorite Fall Recipes

The Easiest Beef Stew | I have two go-to beef stew recipes, but this one usually wins out. Why? Because I can put it in the oven and walk away from it, and when I come back it’s a hot, delicious meal with tender meat and veggies. A winner every time.

What are your favorite fall recipes?

Mini Cooks: Getting Kids Excited About Cooking!

Mini Chefs: A new miniseries about cooking with kids

When I was a kid, I was fixated on grown up things that were scaled down for kids. My parents will regale you with stories about how I wanted to spend my entire visit to Disneyland at the miniature driving course called Autopia. (The early list maker in me created dozens of “Favorite Things” diary entries with Autopia topping the lists every time.) I loved the play checking account that my parents set up for me, complete with real checks that I could write them to make withdrawals from my allowance. And I was obsessed with this kids’ cookbook that was full of easy recipes, which I could always get our babysitter to try out with me.

Cooking is such a fun way to get kids actively involved in something that everyone can benefit from. The lessons are boundless: math, science, English, even cultural studies! Not to mention the pride kids feel when they create something that their parents, peers, grandparents, and other loved ones can enjoy. And on top of that, it’s great preparation for that far off day when they’re living on their own.

I’ll be joining my friends MJ and Sheri in a six-week mini series on cooking with kids, entitled Mini Cooks. MJ is kicking off the series with tips on getting kids prepared to work in the kitchen. We’ll then be presenting you with a handful of simple recipes that kids can easily get in on. While I don’t have any littles of my own, I’m excited to try these all out with my niece and nephew the next time we’re in Hawaii.

Head over to Pars Caeli for the first part of Mini Cooks, where MJ is giving away 5 tips for your little chefs!

Mini Chefs: A new miniseries about cooking with kids


Image Source: Playdate Yakima

Weekend Links + Looking Smart


This week, the landscaping crew decorated the ground with bales of hay and painted pumpkins, and the temperatures didn’t get out of the 60s. We’re all in love with this weather, although some of us are more excited about the pumpkins than others.

Kona, who thinks balls are evil, sniffed suspiciously at the grinning jack-o-lanterns, barking and pushing them with her paws, then running away whenever they teetered back upright. Little does she know that they’re both trick and treat, since she’s always happy to slurp up a spoonful of pumpkin puree! Ah, the puppy version of a pumpkin latte.

James and I are both under the weather, so we’re looking forward to a weekend of soup and sleep. But before this bug hit, I found five fascinating things to share with you:


The Skimm is the news version of gummy vitamins. Just what you need to avoid having blank-face at the water cooler.

If you, like me, never remember to take the butter out the night before.

All your girlfriends will kill for these, and at 30-cents a pop they’re the perfect secretly-inexpensive, highly-impressive gift.

Pumpkin Pasta with roasted vegetables. It’s vegan & gluten-free. If I didn’t tell you that, you’d never know.

A dream (home) comes true for a family I adore.

What are you up to this weekend?

P.S. In case you missed it, here’s Kona’s version of playing fetch.


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Follow Friday: Chevrons & Eclairs

Since I’m pretty new to the Twittersphere, I was a little confused when I first saw the code #FF. Although it would be fabulous if it stood for Frock Files, it actually stands for something even better: Follow Friday. What I love about the lifestyle bloggers I’ve met is the sense of community. Everyone’s rooting for one another — and why not? All these ladies are innovative, motivated, and intelligent.

Supal is no exception — in fact, she’s one of the most dynamic bloggers I’ve had the pleasure of meeting. Her blog, Chevrons & Eclairs, is about travel, fashion, cooking, and beauty, but that could all be summed up by the adjective divine. Most self-described policy wonks I know aren’t also incredibly stylish, great cooks who can give you a recipe for a homemade masque off the tops of their heads.

Spending time at Chevrons & Eclairs makes me feel warm and a little Parisian. Like, of course we should make fabulous meals topped off with equally gorgeous cocktails, all the while wearing pretty dresses and red lipstick. Of course! I highly recommend spending some time there this weekend. I always find that my visits there serve as a little reminder to live life with all my senses.

Among the many things Supal is doing with her life, she’s running a great project called Art to Inspiration. If you’d like to take part in this project, this link will take you to the subscription page.

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