Where do I even begin to try and convey how I feel about Autumn? Well, I just love it! There is something so heartwarming and at the same time, so invigorating about the seasonal change from summer to fall, here in the south. As the temperatures start to cool, I begin to think about all the delicious, sweet and savory fall recipes that I want to make for my family. (I do like to spoil them a little, don’t you?)
And about this time, visions of pumpkins and gourds, in their bronze, orange, cream, and red hues and golden boughs of leaves with stems of berries dance in my head! Really! I absolutely adore “feathering my nest” in the fall with all of these things.
As in most families, we have some traditional treats that we look forward to each year. Things like pumpkin pie, pumpkin crunch cake, butter pecan ice cream, pecan pie, apple crumb pie, etc.
Today, I want to share a couple of our boys’ favorites with you.
There is a cute story to go along with these recipes that I think you will appreciate. You see, I am blessed to be a “boy mom”. Yep, God blessed me with all boys. Five in all.
So, it goes without saying that food is a pretty big deal around this old farmhouse!
Each year in the fall, we take a three or four day getaway to the north Georgia mountains.
We usually stay somewhere around Ellijay, Georgia, where there are beautiful apple orchards. You can pick your own apples or purchase them already picked. Each orchard also sells the best cakes, pies, breads, jellies, cider…you get the picture. Just YUM! And we always stay in a cabin. Usually, it is situated beside a river or stream because we all love to fish! We also love to go to Burt’s Pumpkin Farm! It is a delightful little piece of heaven, that is a Georgia tradition for many families each year, as they go to gather all their pumpkins and other beautiful Autumn decorations and edibles.
A few years back, while making a bunch of our favorite fall foods, to take with us on our trip, I decided to create a fall version of a popcorn treat that we enjoy. I came up with the idea of popcorn with all sorts of tasty goodies added to it, topped with chocolate and some autumn colors to make it “fall-like”. I decided that it would be called “scarecrow snacks”.
So, I made it, and it was delicious, especially with coffee, which is VERY important, in my book!
I proudly presented this delectable popcorn treat to our boys, knowing they would LOVE it.
they did NOT like the name that I had given it.
They said that instead of “scarecrow snacks”, it should be called…of all things…
Yep! Remember, I’m a BOY mom. (Mom to boys who live on a homestead and who love to hunt!)
So, in their mind that was a perfectly acceptable name. And they proudly thought it was an especially FUNNY one. (I have to admit that my husband and I secretly thought that it was pretty funny too).
So, that is what I am sharing with you today, my friends.
A recipe for our family favorite,
IF you can get over the name, you will LOVE this stuff and your family will think that you are just a little “Fall Kitchen Fairy”!
There are actually two versions of this recipe. They are similar in some ways but different in others.
The first one is the boys favorite, and the second is my favorite.
Here is version #1
(For toppings, use what you want, eliminate what you don’t want) I do not give exact measurements on toppings because you can use as little or as much as you like.
* Popcorn (I pop my own and I used 1 cup of organic non-gmo kernels and about two to three tablespoons of olive oil and a pinch of salt.
* Milk Chocolate morsels
* White chocolate morsels
* Butterscotch morsels
* Dark chocolate morsels
* Fall themed sprinkles
* Chocolate sprinkles
* Orange sugar crystals
* Nuts of your choice (I used sliced almonds)
* Pretzel sticks
* Chocolate candy coating (1 package)
* M&M’s ( I used only the brown, orange, red, and yellow ones so that it would look like “Fall”)
* Melted butter
(There are actually two ways of mixing this recipe. You can either mix while on the two cookie sheets or you can use a large mixing bowl. If you place directly on the cookie sheets for topping and mixing, you will have less clean up, but if you use a bowl it is definitely easier to mix.)
In advance, get all ingredients out.
Line two large jelly roll pans or cookie sheets (with sides) with aluminum foil or parchment paper.
Spray foil with non-stick spray.
Get a large mixing bowl ready, if you want, for putting the ingredients together.
Pop your popcorn and either place it in the large mixing bowl or divide it between the two lined jelly roll pans.
Drizzle melted butter and sprinkle salt to taste over popcorn. Mix with your hands, ( it is for your family after all) or a two spatulas to make sure that all the popcorn gets butter and salt on it. (This step is crucial to the taste of the final product)
Doing this in a very large bowl really works well.
Next, lightly drizzle honey over all the popcorn, also to taste. (I am a huge fan of that sweet and salty balance)
Sprinkle some of each of the dry toppings over the popcorn. (Nuts, pretzels, morsels, M&M’s, sprinkles, sugar crystals, marshmallows, pretzels, etc.)
After placing the candy coating in a microwave safe bowl, melt according to package directions and then drizzle over the popcorn.
Use two spatulas or two spoons to gently toss the popcorn, to get it evenly coated.
It will become a light brown color as the chocolate becomes distributed.
Now, top with more sprinkles, M&M’s and sugar. This will make it festive and pretty! (Remember, we eat with our eyes first)
Now, let it cool, try not to eat it all while it cools (it’s harder than it sounds) and then, place it in a container.
“Scarecrow Snacks” (‘Cause Momma says so)
- Melted Butter
- White chocolate candy coating (1 package)
- Salted nuts of your choice
- Dried cranberries
- Golden Raisins
- Pretzel sticks
- Mini marshmallows
- Fall themed sprinkles
- Orange sugar crystals
- Dark chocolate morsels
- Sunflower seeds
- Pumpkin seeds
Pop the popcorn. Divide between two large cookie sheets. If you prefer, you can mix in a very large bowl.
Drizzle with melted butter and sprinkle with salt to taste.
Drizzle with honey.
Top with M&M’s, cranberries, chocolate morsels, pretzel sticks, mini marshmallows, raisins, fruits, nuts and all other toppings.
Melt the candy coating according to package instructions and drizzle over the popcorn and toppings. Gently toss with two spatulas or spoons.
Finally, to add color, sprinkle the fall themed sprinkles and orange sugar crystals over top of the coated popcorn.
Cool completely and then place in a container for storage.
This stuff is SO YUMMY! And like I said before, it is great with a hot cup of coffee (or apple cider). The salty and sweet mix is perfect!
I do hope that you will try these recipes! I really think that you and your family will enjoy them and make them some of your Autumn favorites too!
And…We will still be friends and I will totally forgive you if you want to rename the boy’s choice to something a little less gross and “boyish”.
Also, experiment with some toppings from your own imagination. There are so many great options for making these treats your own.
I hope that you have a wonderful beginning to Autumn! Do those little things that make your family feel loved, your home feel cozy, and make you feel excited about the beginning of a new season!
Happy Cooking and Happy Fall, y’all!
Sharon at Southern Bella Home
And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.