SMiLes by Meg

Pumpkin Chai Bread

I have been having the most lovely vacation. Erik and I spent most of the week backpacking in Shenandoah National Park, and I don’t think better weather existed. We didn’t see a single cloud, it was crisp enough not to overheat but warm in the sun, and the leaves were just starting to change. Obviously, with such perfect Fall weather, I’ve been in a very Fall mood, and have wanted all things pumpkin all week. I picked up some mellowcreme pumpkins (the definitive best Halloween-specific candy), a pumpkin spice Yankee candle, made a pumpkin curry last night and impulse bought

Small Batch Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins

After making last week’s apple cake, and then eating apple cake with pumpkin ice cream every night for a week, I remembered the importance of small batch recipes during a pandemic. So this week, I turned to Hummingbird High’s trusty guide of small batch recipes and asked Erik which sounded the best. We landed on lemon poppy seed muffins, and the recipe was perfect – it made 4. I thought making 4 muffins would be breakfast for two days, but turns out it’s just breakfast for one day. On the plus side, I now can’t eat them everyday all week.

Apple Olive Oil Cake

Yesterday, Erik and I biked 30 miles around DC on a perfect Fall day (which we later learned was unseasonably cool for September). This got me in the mood to make something Fall-ish, and Alexandra must have read my mind. When we got home from the ride, I had a text from her with this recipe, and it solved all of my “what should I make this week” problems. As a bonus, this weekend is Rosh Hashanah, which means we had slices of this cake with a little bit of honey to celebrate. To start, oil a 9×5 loaf pan

Pumpkin Flan

This Thanksgiving, Erik’s sister, Sarah, hosted us in San Francisco, which is weirdly basically halfway between Boston and Anchorage. We got to spend the weekend with Erik’s family, which was lovely, and meant lots of good eating. For Thanksgiving itself, Sarah let Erik and I help out with dessert, which was pumpkin flan and blackberry pie. Erik is the flan expert in our relationship, so pumpkin flan was an obvious choice as our contribution. It was a team effort, with Sarah and Trevor staying up to take it out of the oven when the time difference finally caught up to

White Chocolate Pecan Bars

I’ve been having such a nice weekend. Erik and I have started alternating on what year we spend with each other’s families on Thanksgiving, and this year we’ll be heading to San Francisco where Erik’s sister will be hosting. On years where the plan is to go with Erik’s family, I’ve started spending the weekend before with my parents, while my mom is getting ready and Duxbury is full of holiday activities. My mom and I ran the Turkey Trot on Saturday, and for the second time in 3 years I was able to win the women’s overall group. That

Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls

This week’s recipe was a request from Madison, and I am so glad she thought of it. Though I was a little late to the pumpkin game this year, Madison is a HUGE pumpkin fan, and thought that there must be a way to make cinnamon rolls pumpkin. She was right, and these are them, and you need them next Sunday morning when you’re looking for something a little sweet and very Fall for breakfast. Start by heating the butter and milk over low heat just until the butter melts. Set aside. In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle

Pumpkin Apple Butter

So this recipe takes about 5 total minutes of active time, which made its a perfect recipe for “I need to bake something but I’m going to Alaska for the weekend and only have weeknights available to me.” It’s also become my breakfast spread every morning, and when I mentioned to Erik I didn’t bring him any, it was a strong reminder that Erik does actually like pumpkin, despite the fact that my memory made me think he hated it. Oh well! Start by combining all ingredients in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture

Apple Cider Donut Holes

This weekend, I was reunited with my favorite sous chef, the one and only Laura Bakst! Despite living on the same coast, I visited her for the first time since law school (which is slightly embarrassing – I blame her work schedule), and had just the perfect weekend. We walked all around, baked, ate good food, drank good wine, stumbled upon a pickle festival and generally got to just catch up on each other’s lives. I never realize how much I’m craving friend time until I get an uninterrupted weekend of it. When that friend time also includes frying donut

Whiskey Cake

So in case you’ve been living under a rock, it’s September, and everyone in Boston is leaning hard into pretending it’s Fall, even if it’s still weather-appropriate to be in sundresses and sandals. Don’t get me wrong – I love Fall. And I think I finally get why everyone else does, too. You see, at age 28, I have finally found myself in a job where I’m working year round, straight through the summer. No summer vacation (RIP teaching career). No summer internships with big breaks on either end (RIP being a student). Just work. And I’ve found that while

White Chocolate Peanut Brittle Ice Cream

Photographing ice cream continues to be one of my weaknesses in the food blog world. I really enjoy eating ice cream, but usually do so out of a mug, which is not really the best presentation. I could probably start keeping cones around for this purpose, but who, sitting on the couch late at night with a glass of wine, wants to eat an ice cream cone? It also didn’t help that I was making this ice cream on a rush basis before heading down to Rhode Island for a wedding, so didn’t actually get to take a picture of