A little dip in the temperature, a slight drop in the humidity, and I'm usually running for all things pumpkin. This year, I decided to delay the full onset of fall fever with a little butternut squash soup and some toasty cornbread croutons.

This is a basic soup recipe I make often, but it's easy to tweak the spices, swap out the squash for zucchini in the summer and butternut or, yes, pumpkin, in the fall. Sometimes I make a vegetarian version by omitting the shrimp and using vegetable stock. It fits just about any temperature or mood.

I also picked up a neat little variety pack of vegetables — fresh peppers, okra and dainty little fairy tale eggplant — while on my weekly trip to the farmers market. I love to roast carrots with the warm flavor of cumin mixed with honey and olive oil, so I used the same dressing recipe with this mix of vegetables. The result was a platter full of color.

So dust off those fall flavors while you can! Here in Louisiana, we know these cool snaps can come and go in a hot minute.


Teresa B. Day is a local food writer and author of the “I Eat BR” blog. You can reach her at ieatbrla@gmail.com.