Fall is synonymous with feasting, from Halloween sweets to turkey-fueled banquets to pumpkin flavored everything. They’re foods and flavors we look forward to year after year, but that doesn’t mean they have to find their way to the table in the same tired recipes. Not to knock tradition — there’s no time like the holidays for that — we’re just saying, don’t follow up last year’s heirloom stuffing recipe with a bland basic this season (granny wouldn’t be down with that).
And so far, no one gets that better than Blake Lively, who’s showcasing a handful of Pinterest-perfect dinner dishes featuring everyone’s favorite cold-weather flavors on her lifestyle website Preserve. On Blake’s made-for-fall menu, an apple pie isn’t just an apple pie — it’s a work of art we’d kind of feel guilty cutting into (though we’re sure that feeling would fade upon first bite). Plus, caramel apples are given a pumpkin-spiced twist while her rustic brunch, of course, features heaps of kale – you know, dishes sure to impress at any food-focused fete. Scroll through for the whimsical Blake-approved recipes that are practically guaranteed to be show-stoppers at your dinner parties all November long.
1. Pumpkin and Kale Focaccia: Topped with thin slices of kabocha squash and sprigs of curly kale, this pillowy bread is a meal on its own. Take it to the next level with freshly made basil pesto and serve straight out of the oven.
2. Rosette Apple Pie: THIS is how you wow with a pre-made pie crust: concentrate on the toppings, which in this case are paper-thin slices of red apple arranged in a jaw-dropping rosette. Drench the apples in brown sugar and butter then bake until the crust is golden-brown.
3. Pumpkin Spice Candy Apples: Serve a pumpkin-spiced treat your guests won’t be able to pick up from any corner coffee store. Coat crisp apples in a pumpkin spiced caramel and sprinkle on roasted hazelnuts for crunch.
4. Shaved Brussels Sprouts and Apple-Pomegranate Salad: Brussles sprouts can be a pain to cook — so don’t! Just peel back the layers to create a base for a sweet and savory salad dressed with green apple slices, pomegranate + pumpkin seeds and finished with balsamic vinegar and lemon flake salt. It’s a no-cook dish perfect for a potluck.
5. Pumpkin-Shaped Baked Brie: This slice of baked brie, while undeniably ooey and gooey, doesn’t do this puff pastry dome of an appetizer justice. That’s ’cause this dish is at its most Insta-worthy when it’s whole in the shape of a pumpkin (bonus points for the decorative cinnamon stalk + leaf garnish). Click through for the full effect, then head straight to your local market’s cheese section.