Butternut Squash South with Fig Quenelles
Chocolate and Dried Cherry Bread Pudding
Chocolate Grand Marnier Cake
Chocolate Terrine
Mango Relish
Pumpkin Cheesecake
Quinoa Salad with Asparagus, Dates and Blood Orange
Rhubarb Fruit Salad
Roasted Orange Salmon with Wilted Spinach

Butternut Squash Soup with Fig Quenelles

I do not remember where this recipe originated but it is my go to soup in the fall! I love the figs!!


4 small squash, about 8 inches in diameter
½ teaspoons kosher salt
1 ½ teaspoons ground nutmeg
4 fresh parsley sprigs
4 fresh thyme sprigs
4 small bay leaves
12 peppercorns
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 onions, thinly sliced
4 cups chicken stock
1 cups heavy cream
½ teaspoons ground ginger
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 teaspoons salt

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line a sheet pan with parchment paper. Cut the tops off the squash and scrape out the seeds and strings. Sprinkle the cavity with salt and a little of the nutmeg. Place 1 sprig of parsley and, 1 sprigs of thyme, 1 bay leaf, and 3 peppercorns in each squash; Bake squash for 1 hour or until flesh is tender.

Melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat, add the onions, cover and cook for 4 to 6 minutes. Add the stock and cook uncovered for 30 minutes.

Remove the squash from the oven. Scoop out the flesh and puree with the onions and the stock in a blender or food processor until smooth. If the soup is too thick add more stock to thin. Return the soup to saucepan and add the cream, ginger, cayenne, salt and the remaining nutmeg. Stir to combine the seasonings and bring to boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Simmer for 15 minutes and set aside.

Fig Quenelles

6 dried figs
1 tablespoons dark rum
½ cups heavy cream

Place the figs in a small saucepan and add enough water to cover. Bring to a boil over medium heat, then reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Drain the figs and let them cool. Puree the figs and rum in food processor. In a deep bowl, whip cream until it holds stiff peaks. Fold the pureed figs into the whipped cream. Form the fig mixture into oval-shaped quenelles with 2 teaspoons.

Chocolate and Dried Cherry Bread Pudding

3 Tablespoons unsalted butter
3-4 slices of bread
1 cup heavy cream
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/3 plus 3 Tablespoons sugar
½ cup semisweet or milk chocolate chips
½ cup dried cherries

Pre-heat oven to 350°.

Butter slices of bread with 2 tablespoons of the butter. Cut bread into 1 inch pieces Whisk cream, eggs, vanilla and 1/3 cup of the sugar in large bowl.

Add bread cubes, chocolate chips and dried cherries toss to coat and let sit for 10 minutes.

Butter 6 individual custard cups and divide mixture among cups. Dot tops of bread pudding with the remaining tablespoon of butter and sprinkle with remaining sugar.

Bake for 15 minutes tops should be golden brown.

Chocolate Grand Marnier Cake


1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
8 ounces semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
1 cup sugar
Zest of 4 oranges
7 large eggs, separated (yolks and whites), at room temperate
4 Tablespoons Grand Marnier
1 cup minus 2 tablespoon flour
Pinch sea salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Butter 10 inch baking form and line its bottom with parchment paper.

In double boiler, melt the chocolate. Allow to cool slightly. In a mixing bowl, cream the butter and the sugar until it is pale yellow in color. Add the orange zest, egg yolks, and Grand Marnier and mix together. Pour the melted chocolate into the mixture, add the flour and blend. Set aside.

Whisk the egg whites with a pinch of sea salt until they reach the stiff-peak stage. Carefully fold the egg whites into the chocolate mixture with a rubber spatula.

Pour the batter into baking pan and bake 25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Invert the cake onto a cooling rack. Allow to cool at least 10 minutes and apply icing.


2/3 cup heavy cream
7 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, finely chopped
7 tablespoons clarified butter, at room temperature

Bring cream to a simmer over high heat. Remove from heat and add the chocolate. Stir until the chocolate is melted and evenly incorporated into the cream. Allow to cool to room temperature. Add the clarified butter to the chocolate-cream mixture and blend well. Frost immediately.

Serve with Vanilla Gelato drizzle with Raspberry Coulis garnished with fresh raspberries and a mint leaf.

Chocolate Terrine

This chocolate dessert is rich with a velvety texture that melts in the mouth like a frozen truffle. A wonderful dessert that can be made ahead of time and have on hand for an unexpected occasion. Garnish with sweetened whip cream, strawberries or raspberries.

  • ½ pound butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2/3 cups unsweetened cocoa
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 6 tablespoons heavy whipping cream, unwhipped
  • ½ cup toasted pecans (put nuts in oven at 350 for 10 minutes, stir a few times until toasted)

In large mixing bowl cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. In a separate bowl whip eggs until smooth. Add the whipped eggs slowly to the creamed mixture; mix until smooth. Add cocoa and vanilla, and then slowly add heavy cream and toasted pecans. Line a loaf pan with plastic wrap, spoon terrine into the pan, cover and freeze overnight.


Mango Relish

1 mango chopped 
¼ cup red pepper diced
1 Tablespoon green onion diced 
2 Tablespoons Pineapple juice
½ cup chopped fresh pineapple
1 teaspoon garlic
3 teaspoons chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon lemon juice
¾ teaspoons curry powder
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons olive oil

Combine all ingredients and mix well. Refrigerate for an hour to blend flavors. Relish is best brought to room temperature before serving.

Pumpkin Cheesecake


2 ½ cups graham cracker crumbs
1 ½ tablespoons ground ginger
½ cup unsalted butter, melted

Mix together the crumbs, ground ginger and butter; mix well. Press firmly into the bottom and sides of a 9-inch spring-form pan and bake for 5 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool while preparing filling.


8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
4 ounces mascarpone cheese
¾ cup sugar
¼ cup flour
3 eggs
¼ teaspoon ground ginger
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ cup fresh or canned pumpkin puree

Preheat the oven to 325. Beat the cream cheese until smooth. Add the mascarpone and mix well. Add the eggs and sugar and mix well. Add the spices and vanilla. Be sure to scrape the bottom of the mixing bowl to combine. Beat in the pumpkin and pour the mixture into the prepared pan. Bake cheesecake for 45 minutes or until center is done. Let cool on a rack, and refrigerate for 2 to 3 hours.

Quinoa Salad with Asparagus, Dates, and Blood Orange


1 teaspoon olive oil 
1/2 cup finely chopped green onion
1 cup uncooked quinoa 
2 cups water 
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt 
1 cup fresh blood orange sections *
1/4 cup chopped pecans, toasted 
2 tablespoons minced red onion 
6 dates, pitted and chopped 
1/2 pound sliced asparagus, steamed and chilled 
1/4 jalapeño pepper, diced (optional)
½ cup toasted cashews 

To prepare salad, heat 1 teaspoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add ½ cup green onions to pan and sauté 1 minute. Add quinoa to pan; sauté 5 minutes. Add 2 cups water and 1/2 teaspoon salt to pan and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand until water is absorbed. Transfer quinoa mixture to a large bowl. Add orange and next 5 ingredients; toss gently to combine.


2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 garlic clove, minced
2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint

To prepare dressing, combine juice and next 4 ingredients in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk. Pour dressing over salad; toss gently to coat. Sprinkle with chopped mint. Garnish with cashews. Serve at room temperature.

Note: *Peel pith from blood orange sections

Rhubarb Fruit Salad

Serves 8

3 cups thinly sliced fresh red rhubarb
6 Tablespoons organic honey
6 Tablespoons orange juice
1 ½ cup red grapes
1 ½ cup cantaloupe pieces
1 ½ cup sliced strawberries
½ cup blueberries

Bring rhubarb, honey and orange juice to a simmer over medium heat. Cook until the rhubarb begins to break down about 5 minutes. Pour into bowl and refrigerate until cool to touch. Stir in the rest of the fruit and chill in the refrigerator for one hour.

Roasted Orange Salmon with Wilted Spinach

½ cup orange juice
2 ½ tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons fresh thyme
4 6 ounce salmon fillets
2 tablespoon brown sugar
1 tablespoons Hungarian paprika
1 teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon allspice
1 ½ teaspoon grated orange peel
½ teaspoon sea salt
4 cups fresh spinach leaves

In a medium glass bowl, mix orange juice, 2 tablespoons of the oil and 1 teaspoon of fresh thyme. Add salmon fillets and turn a few times to coat cover. Refrigerate up to 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 375°F. Mix brown sugar, smoked paprika, cinnamon, allspice orange peel, remaining 1 teaspoon fresh thyme and sea salt. Remove salmon from marinade. Place on cookie sheet.

Rub top of salmon evenly with spice mixture. Roast 10 to 15 minutes Wilt spinach in large skillet with 1 teaspoon of olive oil cook 2 minutes. Place salmon over spinach.