Friday, October 2, 2020

Taking Orange Back

It's October. Yeah, yeah, you know. 

Did you also know it's officially Halloween month? Calendar got you thinking Halloween's a day? Nope. Stores got you thinking it's 2 months? Nope. Food bloggers got you thinking it's 3 months? Nope. It's one month, and this is it.

I've always said on this blog that I wouldn't be publishing Halloween recipes or posts in any month but October, but once we hit October, all bets are off. In past years, many of my posts in this month were Halloween themed, and so were the recipes. This year things are going to be a little different, to some degree because of what's been going on all around us, but especially in this country, but also because of my personal circumstances. 

Unless you've been living under a rock (and even if you have been) you know that we all have to make unique decisions this year. Do we allow our kids to go door to door talking to and taking candy from so many people? Do we open our doors and hand out candy?

Good news: it's the one day in the past 7 months that no one should be selfishly screaming that wearing masks usurp their right to infect the innocent.
Bad news: what are the odds that we'll be opening our doors to an innocent covid carriers? 

But slow down, slow down, when it comes to Halloween, first things first. We've got some business to take care of. The month of All Hallows Eve has had its iconic color usurped, and we must stake our claim.

Yes, the color orange has been hijacked. Ironically, by a demon.

Orange has had its . . . associations . . . focused elsewhere of late:

Cheeto Benito, Orange Julius, Agent Orange, Carrot Catastrophe, Tangerine Tornado (hey, I resent that one), Tangerine Tyrant, Petulant Pumpkin, Mango Mussolini, Peach Plutocrat, Nectarine Nero, we've heard them all. 

But you're just going to have to back off, orange one, we're taking our color back. For the month of October anyway. You can start painting your face again in November.

Taking Orange Back | Graphic designed by and property of | #MyGraphics #humor

That little bit of business done, I want to talk about my October plans this year. Most of my posts won't be Halloween oriented and not all of my recipes will be either. The joy of Halloween for me has always been in the faces of the children, the looks of awe when I present them Bloody Fingers for lunch or a Witch's Caldron Giant Cookie snack is priceless. I don't have any little ones around any more, and I really don't have my older kids (and favorite recipe taste testers) around much either. So although I'll stick to my publishing schedule, there will be few Halloween based posts and way less Halloween themed recipes. 

That doesn't mean that I don't have them to share, though. My last round up was called Halloween: 35 Baking In A Tornado recipes, and if you click on that link you're bound to find something fun. 

Halloween: 35 Baking In A Tornado Recipes | Graphic designed by and property of | #MyGraphics #Halloween

For Fall and pumpkin themed recipes that are not necessarily for Halloween, my Fall Harvest Crack is as addicting as . . . crack, and my Pumpkin Boston Cream Poke Cake is . . . wait for it . . . to die for. All of my recipes can be found on my Recipe Box page, and there are sections specifically for Halloween Treats and Halloween Savory.

For today's recipe, let me just say that the older I get, the more I see the value of easing into things. So for this, my first Covid October post, I'm sharing a side dish (which I actually eat as a meal) that's orange, but doesn't scream Halloween. In fact, this would be a great side dish for Thanksgiving, or Christmas, or really, any day. It comes together quickly, cooking the components in the microwave, and it features the sweet of the potato, a little bite from the parmesan, smokiness from the cumin, topped with salty bacon bits. Win, win, win, win.

Stuffed Maple Parmesan Sweet Potatoes for lunch or with dinner, vegetables never tasted so good! | Recipe developed by | #recipe #vegetable

Stuffed Maple Parmesan Sweet Potatoes
Stuffed Maple Parmesan Sweet Potatoes for lunch or with dinner, vegetables never tasted so good! | Recipe developed by | #recipe #vegetable

But, spoiler alert, for the recipe included in my next post, you're getting bats! 

Baking In A Tornado signature | | #MyGraphics

Stuffed Maple Parmesan Sweet Potatoes      

Printable Recipe

4 sweet potatoes
1/3 cup Parmesan ranch salad dressing
2 TBSP maple syrup
1 TBSP honey
1/2 tsp cumin
salt and pepper to taste
1 1/2 cups broccoli florets 
1/4 cup bacon bits

*Rinse, dry and pierce sweet potatoes with a fork. Cook in either the microwave or oven until soft all the way through to the center when pierced with a fork. Set aside.
*Cook the broccoli florets for about 2 minutes in the microwave, until soft but not mushy. Set aside.
*Whisk together the salad dressing, maple syrup, honey and cumin in a bowl. Remove 1/4 cup and set aside.
*Slice open the sweet potatoes and, leaving about 1/4 inch of the flesh on the skin, scoop the center flesh into the bowl with the sauce and whisk together, then spoon back into the sweet potatoes.
*Top the sweet potatoes with broccoli, drizzle with the remaining sauce, and sprinkle with bacon bits.


  1. OMG, Karen, I'm sitting here and watching TV. The Orange Man getting the real life horror of this October season and every few minutes they are announcing someone else who has tested positive or negative (as you probably know, the President of Notre Dame just tested positive). And yesterday our county announced a one week voluntary stay home order (except for work and "getting necessities") because our positive rate has gone up so much (Tuesday it was the 7th worst in NYS and one neighborhood is over 10% positive) - and we may be under a shutdown sometime next week if it doesn't improve. So (for this and other reasons, including a pre existing condition and my age) I think I am going to skip Halloween. At least I have a couple of weeks to change my mind. And I will still enjoy reading your recipes. I bet this will work with honeynut squash, too. Alana

    1. Stay safe. At least you're in a state that is proactive, that's something at least. Our numbers are almost to the highest point they ever were, schools especially are affected but will stay open. I really just don't understand that at all.
      And yes to the honeynut squash (my favorite).

  2. Hmm, i wonder if they will have any kids going door to door here. It migth happen, and i have candy just in case.

    Your treats look so good, i may have to try a few -- on my grown kids, of course. Yeah, sure.

    1. I just had a teenager knock on my door tonight, stood 1 foot in front of the door, no mask. People still just don't get it.

  3. I hope our numbers stay good. I have been through hell trying to get grandson to do schoolwork. The last 9 weeks have given me a new perspective on teachers. Frankly, I’m surprised that more have not ducked out the door and headed for better gigs. I have told them, I am done. He is failing and nothing seems to convince him to be concerned.
    We rarely have Trick or Treaters. The churches and schools do it all and the stores on the main drag. The stores have already backed off the year, and I would not be surprised if churches and schools don’t call off their events. I will put a large bowl on the porch and use the honor system. I think we won’t have leftover candy this year. But whatever the outcome, it is Halloween and some traditions hang in.

    1. If I put a bowl on my porch the first person there would probably empty it into their bag and I'd be done.
      I saw a really funny picture of a family who put a chute from their front door, down to the bottom of their stairs so they can just send candy in the chute down to the trick or treaters. I love that idea.

  4. Replies
    1. It is so much fun. Especially when the boys were little.

  5. Broccoli is one of my favorite vegetables so I'll definitely try your recipe. Have a great week!

  6. Oooh! Perfect timing. I'm looking for more sweet potato recipes.
    Both Husby and I LOVE them!

    1. Good timing indeed. I was just thinking today that I want to do a soup with sweet potatoes. Don't have it worked out yet, but the beginning of an idea is rolling around in my brain.


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