Fall Baking

I've heard this wonderful rumor that fall is here...somewhere. Here in South Carolina we're still celebrating mid-90's every afternoon, but some of the trees are making fun of us. On our morning walk yesterday I realized that several of them were changing color and dropping their leaves - they're going by time of year and not temperature, apparently.

Wherever you are today, you can celebrate the ushering in of fall with some typically autumn treats. Fall baking pans, cupcake liners, gelatin molds and other once-a-year items are out in abundance, so look for something special.

I found a leaf-shaped Nordic mini-cake pan on sale after the fall season last year, so I had just had to pull it out. Combine that with cupcakes in my Lodge muffin pan and we were set for a while. There's something about seeing leaves and tiny cupcakes that makes it feel a little cooler - maybe it was just the air conditioner turned down a little more.

I used a box spice cake for both kinds of treats, but you can always pull out one of those great old recipes from those dusty cookbooks. (I have many of them in that condition, so I will assume that you do, too.) The butter cream frosting was the perfect finishing touch, and these cakes were so little that there was plenty to pile on. So much for my P90X nutrition guide for a day!

So I wish you a happy fall and great baking! Even if the outside world doesn't seem like autumn, we can make it smell that way in the kitchen.


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