One of the most intimate gifts to give friends is the communion of food at your table. And last night was one of those occasions where we had the opportunity to host good friends to a feast of everything autumn. Our history goes back to university days but our visits are just too sporadic. Last night was a chance to catch up on all the news and relax like family.

For us, a cozy autumn meal showcases the beautiful late season colours of golden brown, earthy rust, deep red. The foods are of the harvest and the types that can be cellared, like beets and apples. The tastes are hearty and warm.

Do you have a favourite dish you like to serve when your are hosting in the fall?

Crab Cakes on a bed or Fennel Slaw topped with a Creamy Chili Chipotle Sauce and Baby Onion Shoots.

Roasted Beet Salad of Boston Lettuce and Arugula with Goat Cheese, Candied Walnuts and Creamy Citrus Vinaigrette. [Inspired by Rachelle’s roasted beet salad at Rachelle Eats Food and Karen’s roasted beet salad at Tasty Trials found through FoodBuzz.]

Pappardelle Lamb Ragu. [Inspired by Marc Dorion and Steven Wall’s pappardelle lamb ragu at Town on Elgin. I experienced it at a lunch back in August.]

Apple Custard Tarte. [Inspired by Henrik Lundsgaard, now at Palisades Retirement Residence but formerly the head chef at Stornoway.]

*** Happy to share any of the recipes on request. ***