The Best Bruschetta

I love Pioneer Woman’s blog and constantly find myself gravitating towards her recipes. Maybe it’s her snarky humor or her love of butter– I’m not sure– but I feel as though her kitchen is one I’d want to visit at some point in my life.

This bruschetta is the “best” for a couple of different reasons. First, cherry tomatoes (in my opinion) pack so much more flavor than other, larger ones. So we’re already on the right track by starting with delicious red and yellow nuggets of goodness. Second, minced garlic is an important, and often neglected element of a good bruschetta recipe. Giving the ingredients time to marinate with the garlic allows for some crazy good things to happen in that bowl. So if you’re making this, be sure to make it ahead of time because YES, wait time really does make a difference.

By the way, don’t tell Giada but I served my bruschetta on top of a toasted whole wheat English muffin. And I’m not sure England and Italy have worked so well together since before King Henry VIII. (Sorry for that… I’m in the middle of watching season 2 of The Tudors; couldn’t help myself).

Oh and one more thing… I added goat cheese on top because, well, it’s goat cheese. And it’s delicious. And it can make even the best bruschetta that much better.

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Hot Apple Cider

Fall weather brings with it its own set of special flavors and recipes. We rush to Starbucks for our first Pumpkin Spice Latte of the year, cinnamon and nutmeg become staples in our cabinets and the aroma of apple pie candles fill our homes. I couldn’t wait to make my first batch of hot apple cider this past weekend since it’s my favorite way to incorporate all of my favorite spices and simultaneously makes my apartment smell amazing. Every time I make this people ask for the recipe, which really couldn’t be easier. Scroll down to see for yourself.

Hot Apple Cider

Ingredients:

1 gallon apple cider
3-4 cinnamon sticks
1 orange
Whole cloves
1 Tbsp whole allspice
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground allspice
1 tsp ground nutmeg

Directions:

Use a fork to make holes in the orange for the whole cloves. Insert 1 clove into each hole until the orange is evenly covered. Float orange and cinnamon sticks in apple cider in large pot over medium heat. Add spices and slowly bring to a simmer. Turn heat to low and leave for 30 minutes. Ladle cider into mug and garnish with a cinnamon stick.

*Whole cloves will not dissolve in cider. I like that they look a bit decorative in my mug, just be sure not to eat them as they can be rather strong.