Cooking in the Cabin: Easy Fall Recipes for a Night In

Fall is arguably the best time in the Smoky Mountains (although we love ALL the seasons here), with its changing leaves painting the landscape, stunning mountain views, crisp temps, fun fall events, and great seasonal foods. You can have your fill of caramel apples, pumpkin pancakes, and more in Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge. But when you don’t want to go out, take advantage of your cabin’s fully equipped kitchen!

You can save some money (more for attractions, yay!), whip up your favorites, cook to guests’ specifications, and just enjoy some quality time together without getting out. And if you have a cabin packed with games tables, big screen TVs, or board games, it’ll be easy to stay in a lot. Check out some fun fall recipes we found that should be easy enough to whip up in the cabin!

Apple Cider Chicken | courtesy Sunny Anderson
Play with a local favorite ingredient – apples – for a tasty twist on chicken!

2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 2 pounds)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 Vidalia onion, chopped
1 Granny Smith apple, cored and sliced into 1/4-inch wedges
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons dried thyme
2 bay leaves
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups apple cider

Heat oil and 1 tablespoon butter in a skillet over medium-high heat. Season the chicken breasts with salt and pepper, add to pan and sear until golden, about 4 minutes each side. Remove chicken from pan, and set aside. Add remaining butter and onion, apple, garlic, thyme and bay leaves. Saute until apple begins to get color and onions soften, about 6 minutes. Add flour and stir 2 to 3 minutes. Nestle chicken back into pan, add cider, bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer and cover. Cook until chicken is cooked through, about 12 minutes.

. . . . .

Lemon Pepper Fettucine | courtesy Food Network Magazine
Pair with a glass of local wine for a romantic and simple meal in the cabin.

Kosher salt
12 ounces fettuccine
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 large shallot, minced
1 1/4 cups heavy cream
1 large egg yolk
1 to 2 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest
1/3 cup grated pecorino cheese, plus more for garnish
Freshly ground pepper
Crusty bread, for serving (optional)

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the fettuccine and cook as the label directs. Drain, reserving about 1/2 cup cooking water.

Meanwhile, melt the butter in a skillet over medium heat. Add the shallot and a pinch of salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until lightly golden, about 3 minutes. Whisk the cream, egg yolk and lemon zest in a bowl. Reduce the heat to low and add the cream mixture and cheese to the skillet. Cook, whisking, until slightly thickened, about 2 minutes. Season with salt and 2 to 3 teaspoons pepper.

Add the pasta to the skillet and toss, adding enough of the reserved cooking water to loosen the sauce. Divide among bowls and garnish with more pecorino. Serve with crusty bread, if desired.

. . . . .

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies |
Take advantage of your cabin’s oven and whip up some seasonal fresh-baked cookies for a night in!

2 1/4 c. all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1 c. (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
3/4 c. brown sugar
1/2 c. granulated sugar
3/4 c. pumpkin purée
1 large egg
2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
2 c. semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375° and line two large baking sheets with parchment paper.
In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, pumpkin spice, and salt.

In a large bowl using a hand mixer, cream together butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Beat in pumpkin, egg, and vanilla extract until combined, then add flour mixture. Beat on low until no raw flour appears, then fold in chocolate chips. Refrigerate dough for 30 minutes.

Scoop 1” balls onto prepared baking sheets, 2 inches apart, and bake until puffed up and golden around edges, about 12 minutes.

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