Crystal Valley Blog

The Arresting Aromas of Autumn

POSTED August 31, 2021

The autumn leaves are a few weeks away, but the seasonal change is coming – much as we hate to say farewell to summer! Soon we’ll be welcoming all the colors, smells and traditions of fall. Scientifically speaking, research reveals you can SMELL the change of seasons – as trees shed their leaves and more moisture filters through the air. And even if summer is your favorite time of year (plenty of hands raised here!) there’s lots to love about the fragrance of fall.

Baked Apples with Cinnamon

What on this big, beautiful planet smells better than the fragrance of an apple-cinnamon cake baking in the oven? Anybody? As temperatures start to fall and we’re no longer side-stepping our ovens, this delicious concoction from the Food Network is just the thing to fill your home with those fall-ish spice-fruit smells. And oh, my, my – this cake doesn’t scrimp on taste with optional walnuts or pecans, and eat it right out of the oven, topped caramel sauce and whipped or ice cream.

Oh Sweet Basil has a simple Fried Cinnamon Apples recipe – a copycat of the Boston Market bestseller – that is super simple to make and spiced with both cinnamon and nutmeg. Fried (don’t hyperventilate, it’s not a bad word!) in butter and sugar, these apples taste incredible, sliced bits of fruity goodness in a syrupy sweet glaze. Other recipes use brown sugar for a little different taste sensation.

Inspired Taste contends that these cinnamon baked apples are the easiest yet, with a topping of butter, flour, oats, brown sugar and more cinnamon, and polished with salted caramel sauce and, of course, ice cream!

Country Living has a slew of maple pecan treats including pecan pie and many of them rival the scrumptious smell of pumpkin spice. From cookies and muffins to pies and side dishes, there’s plenty to choose from (including gluten-free!) with the variety of smell-good creations.

Simmering Spice Scents

Aromatic combinations (like apple slices, cinnamon sticks, and cloves in a pot of water on the stove) will fill your home with the fragrance of fall, and you don’t have to light a single candle! How Sweet it Is blogger Jessica throws in orange peels (Clementine peels will do) plus cardamom pods, fresh ginger and star anise. She’s saving her vanilla bean for Christmastime, but if you have one laying around begging to be used – throw that in, too!

You can also use a slow cooker for your simmer pot. Just fill it with water and the smell-good ingredients, put on the lid, and turn the slow cooker to high. When the steam starts rising, take the lid off and set the slow cooker to a low. Add water as it evaporates to keep your pot at least halfway full. Apartment Therapy offers seven different recipes (for different noses!) including combinations with lavender, bay leaf and cranberry!

AROMATIC Breads of the Season

Fall wouldn’t be fall without the smell of pumpkin something! We picked this pumpkin bread recipe from a 50-year-old magazine published by Once Upon a Chef. With butter, sugar, pumpkin and all the right spices (cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg) once you pop that bread pan in the oven, you’ll be counting down the 75 minutes until you can pull it out and sample the goods! 

To add a little pumpkin spice to nuts, your coffee, and even whipped cream on a slice of pie, check out this DIY recipe from Taste of Home. With it, you can add a little fall flavor to every meal! has a wonderfully moist zucchini bread recipe, if you have a few of those veggies in your fridge (or still in your garden). The secret (we think) might be beating the eggs until they’re FLUFFY adding wet, then dry ingredients. Using an entire cup of oil, and 2 ¼ cups of grated zucchini – with the skin on – nuts and raisins (one cup each) are optional. 

And then back to Taste of Home for the “best ever” banana bread recipe. The wonderful aroma of banana bread baking will have your mouth watering and it tastes just as good as it smells!! You’ll find tips on how to ripen bananas, and how to make it vegan and/or gluten-free.

It’s Nearly Fall in Crystal Valley

It’s almost fall in the master-planned community of Crystal Valley and the town of Castle Rock will be hosting lots of much-anticipated seasonal events. Come and explore the new homes surrounded by nature and minutes away from everything essential. With 10+ decorated models from Richmond American Homes, Kauffman Homes, Century Communities and D.R. Horton, the thoughtfully designed ranch or two-story models – are priced from the $400s.


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