Autumn Bliss picture of nut cookies

Long-Awaited Autumn Bliss Arrives

Phyllis Lifestyle 19 Comments

I can’t explain it, but I feel that my year starts over in the fall. Most people think of new beginnings at springtime when the earth is waking up. But autumn to me is exhilarating! The colors, the crisp air, the beautiful sunsets over colorful mountains—I love it!

Autumn also brings a harvest of wonderful apples, pears, root vegetables, pumpkins, and nuts. I love to get out my favorite recipes and cook foods that my family loves.

Autumn is just my season. Interestingly enough, I don’t think I’m alone in this feeling; we find that our autumn magazines seem to jump off the shelf. I believe that people are ready for a colorful change from summer. While summer has its glorious attributes, we find that our readers long for the autumn season. It offers a warmth and comfort that we’ve missed.

To share some of my joy in autumn’s long-awaited arrival, I have one of the lovely recipes from Victoria magazine’s lovely special issue Autumn Bliss for you. They featured delights that highlight the flavors of fall fruits, caramel, and the savory-sweet taste of the season’s nuts. Here’s their Toasted-Pecan Shortbread Cookies with Buttercream Filling to give you a sample of the autumn goodies they’ve created.

Toasted-Pecan Shortbread Cookies with Buttercream Filling
Makes approximately 24 sandwich cookies
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  1. 2¾ cups all-purpose flour
  2. ½ cup finely chopped toasted pecans
  3. ¼ cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar, divided
  4. ¼ teaspoon salt
  5. 1 cup unsalted butter
  6. ¼ cup heavy whipping cream
  7. 2 egg yolks
  8. 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste*
  9. Buttercream Filling (recipe follows)
  1. In the work bowl of a food processor, pulse together flour, pecans, ¼ cup sugar, and salt. Add butter; pulse until mixture is crumbly. In a small bowl, whisk together cream, egg yolks, and vanilla bean paste. With food processor running, slowly pour mixture through spout, and pulse until mixture forms a ball. Place dough between 2 pieces of parchment paper, and roll to a ¼-inch thickness. Freeze for 30 minutes.
  2. Preheat oven to 350°. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper; set aside.
  3. Remove dough from freezer; remove top piece of parchment paper. Using a 2¾-inch round cutter, cut as many cookies as possible, rerolling scraps no more than twice. If dough becomes too soft, place in freezer until firm, about 15 minutes.
  4. Using a 1¼-inch cutter, remove centers from half of cookies. Sprinkle open-center cookies with remaining 1 tablespoon sugar.
  5. Bake until lightly browned around edges, 10 to 15 minutes. Let cool on baking sheets for 10 minutes; remove to wire racks to let cool completely. Spread approximately 1 teaspoon Buttercream Filling onto whole cookies, and top with cookies with centers removed. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.
  1. *Vanilla bean paste is available at specialty-foods stores. Vanilla extract can be substituted for vanilla bean paste.
The Ribbon in My Journal - Phyllis Hoffman DePiano
Buttercream Filling
Makes approximately 1 cup
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  1. ½ cup brown butter*, softened
  2. 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
  3. ½ vanilla bean, halved lengthwise and scraped, seeds reserved
  1. 1. In a medium bowl, beat butter, confectioners’ sugar, and vanilla bean seeds with a mixer at medium-high speed until smooth and creamy, about 5 minutes. Use immediately.
  1. *In a medium saucepan with a heavy bottom, melt butter over medium-high heat. Cook, watching closely, until butter foams and turns golden in color and has a nutty aroma, 8 to 10 minutes. Immediately remove from heat, and strain through a fine-mesh sieve. Let cool to room temperature.
The Ribbon in My Journal - Phyllis Hoffman DePiano

VIDEO: How to Brown Butter

I wish you the most beautiful autumn ever! Thank you for being a part of The Ribbon in My Journal family.

Do you love autumn, too? What do you love most about it?

Autumn Bliss 2015, Victoria magazine special edition

Comments 19

  1. I’ve been sharing my copy of AUTUMN BLISS with my co-workers. Living here in Central Florida your magazine brings us those fond memories of Fall back north where we all previously lived. Actually I’ve already bought the Autumn issues of the other magazines your company prints. Its all yummy!

  2. Thanks for another delish recipe!

    I love Fall too. Once a Midwesterner always one. Even though we live on the coast in California….. The Fall decorations are out. Soon Halloween will be added followed by Thanksgiving and Christmas.

    My neighbors love to see the entry, door and house decorations.

    It may be 80 outside, but inside its Fall.


  3. My house are the color of fall, I too enjoy decorating in the fall color’s lighting the candles, using large and small pumpkins. I don’t like the scarry part of Autumn, so no skeletons, or anything dead!!! Just the fun scarecrows, pumpkin, the beautiful fall flower’s in yellow, oarnge, and the flirty purple one’s. I need new fall flowers to make my day:)

  4. We are all autumnal kindred spirits! I cannot wait to decorate my house with a fall theme. And like Mary Jean, I too celebrate Canadian and American thanksgivings.(My grandmother was American.) The warm colours, crisp apples, cozy sweaters just lift my spirits. The special issue Autumn Bliss magazine is wonderful…thank you Phyllis. I want fall to last forever!

  5. i love Autumn too, just wished lit lasted longer. I just bought pumpkins at a farmer’s stand and plan to make homemade pumpkin to can myself for pies. it is so good!

  6. Thank you for that wonderful recipe! I will be trying it out soon. Time for me to stock up on my baking supplies, dried fruit, and nuts, I LOVE this time of year . My dining room is decorated with cornucopias, pumpkins and I’ve already set out my fall tablecloth to be ready for Canadian Thanksgiving Day on October 12th. .We also celebrate American Thanksgiving in honour of my grandmother, who was American,

  7. Autumn, we L-O-V-E it! Taking out my wicker Cornucopia filled with colorful autumn branches of orange leaves pine and berry branches for Fall, it adorns my dining room table. Its 3′ long and 16″ high, topped off with a pheasant. I’m officially in the mood the day autumn begins. Add pumpkins to our entry way and now make the Caramel Layer Cake from Southern Fall Baking just picked up yesterday and enjoy!
    Thank God for MOM, hubby, family all friends, including Phyllis and Hoffman Publications and freedom! Carmel

  8. It’s one of the many things we are kindred spirits in, Phyllis. I LOVE autumn, it feels like my life begins again once the cool crisp days of autumn come around. Those temperatures are not here, at all, but I’m desperately waiting. These cookies look amazing, and thank you for the tutorial. The covers of Victoria, Southern Lady and the special publications for fall all jump off the shelf at me, I’ve bought every single one, so filled with autumn goodness and beautiful inspiration!

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