WARNING: Fall Flavors Ahead!

by kellybakes in

I'm unimpressed with Pennsylvania fall this year. Blame it on the summer heat wave (I won't refute you because I wasn't here to experience it), but it just isn't wowing me. Granted, I'm from New England and I'm seasonally spoiled. We get the best of all seasons and I love watching one fade into the next. I was home this weekend, ogling the leaves like a tourist, taking in all the attention my mother would give me and trying to cram in as much pestering of my sister as possible. I spent a lot of time with my family and I spent a ton of time eating.

Let's go day-by-day, shall we?

This weekend happened to be a long weekend as well as my school's fall break. However, the biggest contributing factor to choosing this particular weekend to come home was the Southington Apple Harvest Festival. I wish I could tell you more about the countless craft vendors or the rides and games, but I can't. I'm extremely narrow-minded in my approach to this festival. I go for the apple fritters alone. I'm not sure how to say this, but they're kind of a big deal. People wait in lines up to a half hour for bags of these sugar-dusted fried balls of fall.

the never-ending line, which wound around the block

I'm not sure who orders 5 Dozen, but I would like to be that person's friend.

My mom and I "split" a dozen. I use the word "split" loosely, because I'm pretty sure she had about 3 and then gave me the rest. Bless her heart, she's good to me!

Piping hot and soft with warm bits of apple throughout and dusted with cinnamon and sugar:
A perfect bite of fall.

We were particularly hungry this year and had the brilliant idea of eating before we got fritters so that by the time we moved through the line, we would have digested our food. Tempted by everything from New England clam chowder in a bread bowl to chili to fried dough (a personal favorite), we decided on Polish food. My mom went for sauerkraut pierogies and my sister and I split potato & cheese pierogies and a kielbasa and kraut sandwich. The pierogies could have used a dash of pepper in the filling and a touch of butter on top, but they were still pretty delicious (and far superior to commercial frozen ones). I had no complains about my sandwich. The bread was soft, the meat had just enough spice and the touch of dijon mustard added a welcome kick to balance out the flavors. Eating fair food on a perfect October day with my family? I couldn't ask for a better day!
Let's move on to Sunday...
By the time I went to sleep on Saturday night, I was pretty convinced that I would never eat again. Having gorged on apple fritters and pierogies, I wasn't sure I could fit anything else in my stomach, but I had a breakfast date first thing Sunday morning, so I had to make room somehow. Thankfully, it only took a quick glance at the menu to find room for my next fall foodventure... pumpkin pecan pancakes at Colony Diner in Meriden.

fluffy buttermilk pumpkin pancakes infused with cinnamon and the crunch of pecans

sprinkled with sugar
Then slathered in maple syrup... oh yes. (and just look at those pecans!)
Easily my favorite breakfast. I wait all year for it.
I'm getting full just typing this and smiling at my delicious food memories, but friends, I have one last stop on this taste train. I'd like to tell you about Ted's. It's a tiny place--if you're not careful, you can drive by and almost miss it.

They've been making magic for over fifty years and their delicious steamed cheeseburgers were recently featured on Man vs. Food for good reason! Hamburger meat gets packed into metal trays and placed in a steaming oven. Cheese meets the same fate, though it has its own oven. Each sandwich is made to order and the meat is placed atop a soft, freshly baked kaiser roll. Next, the steamed cheese nearly doubles over itself as it oozes out of the steam tray and slides down over the meat, leaving no bit of hamburger uncovered. Topped with anything you'd like (I went the lettuce, tomato, raw onion, ketchup route), they're quite the mouthful.  I was bringing my sister lunch (though a few minutes late... sorry!), so I took mine to go and didn't get to take a picture of my burger while the cheese was still warm, melty and making its slow descent down the bun. Forgive me. I'll get better pictures next time.

Amazing weekend at home--fall flavors, delicious food, quality time with my family and foliage, I'm one lucky gal.