Fall delights - bringing beauty, breezes and bountiful harvests of fresh deliciousness for all to enjoy. Perhaps you plan to spend this season immersed in football, spending hours tailgating with friends or simply plopped on your couch with a bucket of beverages and a big screen. Or if you’re more the active type, you may be planning to hike many a mountain over the next few months, soaking up the beautiful fall foliage. Personally, I enjoy days spent trolling my local Farmer’s Market for fresh produce and nights camped around a bonfire drinking cider, eating smores, and hanging with my favorite people. Apple picking was always a big favorite around my house too and of course, apple eating – I’m already thinking about pies and cobbler and a hands-down family favorite, apple crisp with fresh whip cream.

Taste buds, now that I’ve got your attention, here’s a couple of recipes that are sure to delight this season.


Champion Chili


• 1 pound ground beef
• 1 pound ground pork
• 2 tablespoons olive oil
• 1 large onion, chopped, divided
• 1 green bell pepper, chopped
• 1 habanero peppers, seeded and minced
• 2 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
• 3 cloves garlic, minced
• 3 tablespoons chopped green onion
• 3 (15 ounce) cans chili beans
• 1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes
• 1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
• 1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
• 1 (12 ounce) bottle lager-style beer
• 2 tablespoons cornmeal
• 1 cup water
• 1/4 cup chili powder
• 1 tablespoon ground cumin
• 1 teaspoon garlic powder
• 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
• 1 tablespoon salt
• 1 1/2 teaspoons ground black pepper
• 1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese


1. Cook ground beef and pork in a large skillet over medium-high heat until the meat is crumbly, evenly browned, and no longer pink. Drain and discard any excess grease.

2. Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Stir in 3/4 of the onion and all of the green pepper, habanero pepper, jalapeno pepper, and garlic. Cook and stir until the onion has softened and turned translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir the drained meat into the onion mixture along with the green onion, chili beans, diced tomatoes, tomato paste, tomato sauce, beer, and water. Sprinkle with the cornmeal, then season with chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, salt, and black pepper.

3. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, then reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer at least 2 hours, stirring occasionally. Refrigerate overnight.

4. Reheat the chili over medium heat until it begins to simmer again. Top individual servings of chili with cheese and remaining chopped onion.


Apple Crisp


• 4 apples - peeled, cored and sliced
• 1/2 cup brown sugar
• 1 cup all-purpose flour
• 3/4 cup white sugar
• 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
• 1/4 teaspoon salt
• 1 egg, beaten
• 2 tablespoons butter, melted


1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).

2. In a 9 inch square baking pan, mix sliced apples with brown sugar. In a large bowl, mix together flour, white sugar, cinnamon and salt. In a small bowl, beat together egg and melted butter. Stir into flour mixture. Spread evenly over apples.

3. Bake in preheated oven for 30 to 40 minutes, or until topping is golden and crisp.


Smores with a Twist


Graham Crackers
Mini M&M's


Place a handful of mini M&M's in a small bowl. Toast the marshmallow until the outside is nice and toasted. Remove the outer portion of the marshmallow and roll the gooey portion in the mini M&M's. Place the gooey M&M creation between two graham crackers and enjoy!