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2014 Election - Time To Vote!

It’s almost national Election Day, and I’ve just returned from early voting at my Dallas, Texas precinct. It’s a gorgeous, cool, sunny morning, and the voter turnout was steady as folks took advantage of beautiful weather and shorter waiting lines in order to cast ballots. Now comes the wait until the ballots are counted and results begin to stream in Tuesday evening November 4.

Today’s voting got me thinking about the concept of favorites – favorite books and music, favorite color, and favorite recipes. At this time of year when the days and nights are cooler, my favorite recipes are hot and fragrant from the oven. Roasted chicken, 4-layer lasagna, roasted glazed root vegetables, pumpkin ‘n’ spice bread, butternut squash pie….

So, I thought in honor of Election Day 2014, I would share two of my favorite autumn recipes and let YOU vote for your favorite on my Facebook Fan page. Or share one of your own favorites!



From Celebrating Home: A Handbook For Gracious Living by Christy Rost (Bright Sky Press, 2012)

1 tablespoon olive oil
1/3 cup sweet onion, finely chopped
3 large cloves garlic, peeled and finely chopped
1 28-ounce can organic diced tomatoes
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon dried sweet basil
  Freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons fresh oregano, chopped
2 tablespoons Parmigiano Reggiano
8 manicotti shells
2 ounces cream Havarti cheese, shredded
6 ounces fresh Mozzarella
3/4 cup part-skim Ricotta

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cook the manicotti shells according to package directions just until they are al dente. Drain and cool slightly. Fill each shell with Havarti, mozzarella, and ricotta. Spoon a small amount of sauce into the bottom of a casserole dish, arrange the filled manicotti on top of the sauce, and pour the remaining sauce over the shells. Cover and bake 45 minutes, or until the sauce is bubbly and the filling is hot. Sprinkle with grated Parmigiano-Reggiano just before serving.

Yield: 4 servings


From Celebrating Home: A Handbook For Gracious Living by Christy Rost (Bright Sky Press, 2012)

4 large sweet potatoes, peeled and sliced into 1/4-inch thickness
2 Granny Smith or other firm apples, peeled, cored, and thinly sliced
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup chicken broth
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon white pepper
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
3/4 cup Panko crumbs

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place a single layer of sweet potatoes in a large baking dish, overlapping the slices. Add a layer of sliced apple and top with the remaining sweet potatoes.

In a small bowl, stir together the heavy cream, chicken broth, salt, nutmeg, and white pepper. Pour the mixture over the potatoes and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Cover the casserole tightly with foil and bake 45 minutes. Uncover, sprinkle with Panko crumbs, and bake 15 minutes more, or until the sweet potatoes and apples are tender when pierced with a sharp knife. Serve immediately.

Yield: 6 to 8 servings