Masthead header

Cranberry Salad, Fresh Turnips, and Pecan Pie: Favorite Fall Dinner Recipes – part 1

a fall dinner pecan pie
For some reason, we all seem to want to cook comfort foods at this time of year…things that use the harvest of the season. So today I want to share some recipes with you for my favorite fall meal.  Again this was the menu:

5 MENUFor this particular meal, I made the cranberry salad, cleaned and cooked the greens, and prepared the pecan pie the day before.  If you are like me, having things done ahead of time makes things so much easier to do.

12 pork tenderloin with grits and greens

I mentioned to you the congealed cranberry salad did not set up very well.  It really makes a good spoonable sauce for the pork, or just add a dollop of mayonnaise to enjoy it as a salad. It would also be delicious with turkey.  I am wondering how using the jellied cranberry sauce instead of the whole berry kind would affect the consistency of it…..might have to experiment with that next time.

recipe - Cranberry Salad Talk of the House

You can also use chopped pecans in place of (or in addition to) the chopped celery.  Since we were having pecan pie for dessert, I chose to leave the nuts out of the salad.

For the greens I used 3 bundles that they sell in our local grocery store.  That is not a good measurement I know. Perhaps you can get a better idea of the quantity by looking at the photos below.  I am not a fan of turnip roots, so I do not cook them.  Do you all like to eat the roots?

The hardest part of preparing the greens is the first step:  tear every single leaf from its stalk; discard the stalk and wash the torn leaves thoroughly.

turnips washing

Then you fry bacon in a stock pot, add vegetable oil and salt, some water, and finally the washed greens.  Cover with more water and cook for a very long time.  These are not going to smell good.  That’s another reason I like to cook them the day before.

turnips ready for cooking

After cooking, I let them cool and then refrigerate them overnight in the stock pot.  When it is time to serve them, I simply take the pot out of the refrigerator and warm them again on the stove for a few minutes.

a fall dinner fresh turnips

recipe - Turnip greens

I also made the pecan pie the day before.  It is better to me served warm, so you should pop it in the oven for a few minutes before serving…but only a few minutes so that you do not overcook the pecans on top.  I don’t like to heat it in the microwave because it seems to take on a soggy texture. (I have a thing about texture.)  And of course, I like whipped cream as a topping on it. 🙂  (I forgot to take a photo of a slice on Sunday, so here is the very last slice about to be devoured today!)

slice of pecan pie

You will need eggs, Karo syrup, sugar, vanilla, salt, butter, pecans, and an unbaked pie shell.  I am not a pastry maker, so yes, I used the premade kind.  (But I do place it in a pretty dish for serving.  Does that count?)

pecan pie ingredients

Combine all the ingredients and pour it into the pie shell.  To quote Ina, “How easy is that?” 🙂

pecan pie ready for the oven

Then bake it for 45- 60 minutes.  You will need to watch it at the end to make sure it does not brown too much.

a fall dinner pecan pie

recipe - pecan pie

I will be back for part 2 with the remaining recipes.  After that I hope to show you a little fall decor around here.

dining room cabinet for fall Talk of the House

Until next time…a signature


You might enjoy these posts:

Katherine - October 28, 2013 - 1:12 pm

I LOVE your home and looking forward to seeing the rest of it. Thank you for sharing with us.

Dixie - October 27, 2013 - 1:16 am

I love your receipes. If you have a mail list of email your receipes please add me.

Dawn - October 24, 2013 - 2:10 pm

I love it when you share your recipes with us. Your pecan pie recipe is the same one my Mom uses (except she always makes her pie crust from scratch). I use the premade pie crusts since mine nvere turn out. I can’t wait to see your Fall decorations!

debbie booth - October 24, 2013 - 9:50 am

Too funny Kelly ! Here in Canada we eat the turnip not the green. So delish cubed boiled and mashed with a little brown sugar, butter and pepper…. that’s the simple way, so good with everything ! Love your blog !

Lynn McKinley - October 24, 2013 - 8:43 am

Thanks so much for these recipes Kelly! Would you believe that I have never cooked turnips in my life! Yes… born and raised in the South and never cooked them! I always left that up to my mother, grandmother or mother-in-law. Now that they have all gone to Heaven, the pressure is on me. I think I’ll cook some this weekend! Hope to see you next time at Hobby Lobby!

anita - October 23, 2013 - 10:19 pm

Well this is reminiscent of my trip to Savannah! Unfortunately I cannot make the pecan pie due to nut allergies and we do not have turnip leaves here…looks yummy though! I believe I read that it is the enzymes from the pineapple that prevents the cranberry salad to set. Perhaps draining the liquid from the can may help.

Sandy - October 23, 2013 - 9:05 pm

Oh Kelly, that menu looks fabulous!! Are you going to share the grits recipe?

Have a wonderful evening! xoxo

Megan - October 23, 2013 - 8:46 pm

Hi Kelly,
Pecan pie is a favorite of mine! I will have to try your recipe. Have you ever had butter tarts? They are a Canadian mini pecan pie. SO delicious!!!! I have never had turnip greens, but I love “Utica” greens which are greens (of some sort) that are a bit spicy, and originate in Utica, NY. I have never tried to make them, but I have made Swiss chard and beet greens – does that count? Cranberry sauce – not so much for me! Thanks for some nice recipes – hope you are feeling better!

Louvina - October 23, 2013 - 8:30 pm

I think it is nice for you to share your recipes and seems to connect us all on a personal level– almost like we are breaking bread together somehow!? I want to try this meal very soon. My daughter surprised me today with a delivery from Willams Sonoma– which included apple spice brining kit for turkey, a turkey base gravy and pecan pie in a jar– which I have never made. Now that I brine the turkey, the family says “never” go back! It really makes it so moist. The brining spices can also be used with chicken and pork. I can recommend WS’s kit– soo good!

Arlene@Nanaland - October 23, 2013 - 8:00 pm

I am going to try your pecan pie Kelly….I have trouble with the pie being “runny”. Yours looks great!
Pecan pies can be sooo finicky. I know just what you mean about them being runny, and I don’t like them that way either. This recipe called for only 1 cup of pecans, but I added in the extra 1/2 cup to make sure that it wasn’t runny. It seemed to do the trick. Good luck with yours.

Marlene - October 23, 2013 - 7:24 pm

I love your post and pictures as always…I am having guests in Saturday evening and calling it an Autumn Dinner. I serving pork tenderloin with a cranberry glaze, roasted winter vegetables from Ina Garten, Orange pecan wild rice by Ina Garten, Red pear salad with arugula and red leaf lettuce and an apple pie with a lite caramel sauce. This is my very favorite time to entertain for I love having a crackling fire when my guests arrive. Your dinner sounds absolutely wonderful and only wish I could be a guest at your table. I love the simple décor of the mini pumpkins in a bowl and your touches around your home. You inspire us all out here in Blog land. Thank you.
I wish I could be a guest at YOUR table Marlene! Your meal sounds divine!! Please eat some of the apple pie for me. Our weather finally takes a turn for cold tonight, and perhaps we can have a fire in our fireplace this weekend. Thank you for your sweet sweet comments.

Garden, Home and Party - October 23, 2013 - 7:22 pm

I’ve never had Turnip greens, but I love kale and spinach so I’m sure I’ll like this. The pie looks amazing and the cranberry dish will be a welcome addition this year. I look forward to the pork, gravy and grits recipes. I know, greedy, aren’t I? I love the way the white cupboard is styled with your pans and pictures and other items.
Karen, I have never had kale, so I guess that makes us even. 🙂 You are not greedy at all. Your recipes will be in the next post. Thank you for the compliments on the dining room cabinet.

Martha - October 23, 2013 - 7:05 pm

I think I have gained 5lbs just reading your posts on this fabulous dinner. I do collards instead of turnips and they don’t smell good while they cook either. I am intrigued with whipped cream in the grits…..sounds wonderful….can you give specifics?
Oh dear! I did not mean to make you do that! My parents like collards too, but I like tender turnips…almost “slimy.” The recipes for all the other dishes will be in the next post. Please come back for them…either tomorrow night or Friday.

Nana Diana - October 23, 2013 - 6:01 pm

That sounds like a wonderful meal, Kelly. I like the idea of that cranberry salad, too, with the celery. I will try that this year, I think! And I LOVE pecan pie!!!! xo Diana
It was delicious. Cranberry salad is good, but I have a raspberry one I want to share with you all in November that is a VERY old one I got from Southern Living years ago. Everyone here loves pecan pie. You are not alone in that! 🙂

S u b s c r i b e   b y   E m a i l