Tag-Archive for ◊ struesel ◊

23 Sep 2011 Apple Pie Cake

With a name like “Apple Pie Cake,” how could I not try this recipe?  I saw a picture of this Apple Pie Cake on Pinterest a few days ago.  (OMG have you visited Pinterest?   I happily waste a lot of time on that website.  I love, love, love it!  It’s like I am writing my own magazine.  I choose the subjects, the articles, and the pictures and have the whole thing saved so I can flip through the pages whenever I want…, but I digress 🙂 Onto this fabulous recipe…!

This is a Martha Stewart recipe.  I have never been a big fan of Martha. To be honest, she scares me.  Doesn’t she seem a bit abrupt?  And imperial?  I get the feeling she’s looking  down her nose at me.  I feel frumpy and incompetent when she’s on TV.  It’s a surprise I tried this recipe actually!  I’m so glad I did though.

I love fruit based desserts.  Mix some fruit with flour, butter, sugar, and cinnamon, bake it until it all melts together and I’ll fall all over myself getting to the table. This recipe results in sort of an apple crisp turned pie that looks like a cake!  De-licious! Easier-than-pie and much easier-than-cake. It’s best eaten the day it’s made, the crust softens a bit after a night in the refrigerator, but no one would turn down a leftover slice. No one.

I tried a slice of this with whipped cream, and a slice of it without whipped cream.  I can’t believe I am saying this, but I liked it better without the whipped cream.   I haven’t tried this with a scoop of vanilla ice cream yet.  I guess I should make another,  just to test that out 😉

I found the recipe at MarthaStewart.com.  And I did make a few changes to the recipe…  The original recipe called for 5 lbs of apples (about 12).  I bought that many, but only used about 3 ½ lbs (6 large apples).  I added a bit of sugar, 1/3 cup, to the apples with the cinnamon, but Martha didn’t.  You can leave the extra sugar out if you’d like.

Apple Pie Cake

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup packed light-brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon (divided use)
  • 1/2 pound (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into 8 pieces
  • 3-4 pounds (about 6) tart apples, such as Granny Smith
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • dash of nutmeg (optional, I added this, I love nutmeg…)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Combine flour, brown sugar and 1 teaspoon cinnamon. Using a food processor, electric mixer, or pastry cutter, cut in butter until the mixture forms pea-size pieces.
  3. Press 2/3 of the mixture onto bottom and 1 inch up the side of a 9-inch spring form pan.
  4. Peel apples, cut into thin slices, and place in a bowl. Pour off any accumulated liquid.  (I didn’t have any)
  5. Toss apple slices with remaining teaspoon cinnamon and lemon juice, and optional 1/3 cup granulated sugar.
  6. Place prepared apples over the “crust” in the prepared pan, pressing down gently as you pack them in.
  7. Sprinkle remaining crumb mixture on top of the apples.
  8. Put the pan on an aluminum foil-lined baking sheet, and bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until golden brown on top.
  9. Run a knife around the edge of the pan, and let the cake cool in the pan to set.
  10. Dust the top of the cake with confectioners’ sugar. Remove the sides of the spring form pan and place on decorative plate to serve.
  11. Serve at room temperature.

I’ll be making this again on Monday night for my Dining For Women meeting.  I know the women will appreciate it.  I also think I will make this for Thanksgiving.  It’s so EASY, and delicious.  I hope  you try this recipe and like it as much as I do.  Thanks for stopping by my kitchen today…, and stop by my Pinterest pages, too!!

11 Jan 2011 Cracked Sugar Pumpkin-Apple Muffins

Pumpkin isn’t only for October and November you know.  I hope you have an extra can or two of pumpkin puree on hand for the other ten months of the year.  This isn’t a pumpkin muffin, and it isn’t an apple muffin, it’s a bit of both, so it should please everyone.  I like the pumpkin, I like the diced apple, but I especially like the cracked sugar on top!

These muffins stay moist and tasty for at least three days.  I’ve never had one around longer than three days, so I don’t know what happens on day four or five. (If I had expected to have extras around that long, I’d freeze them.  It only takes a few minutes to defrost a muffin, especially if you slice or quarter it.)

In muffin recipes I often substitute half the oil in the recipe for applesauce.  Oddly, it doesn’t work well in this muffin. The texture suffers quite a bit.  If you are out of Pumpkin pie spice, as I am, use ¾ teaspoon ginger plus ½ teaspoon nutmeg, plus scant ½ teaspoon ground cloves OR allspice,  instead of the 1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice.

This recipe makes 18-20 muffins.  I know that’s a lot. But you’ll make a lot of people happy!

Cracked Sugar Pumpkin-Apple Muffins

For the muffins

2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
2 cups white sugar
1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup canned pumpkin puree
½ cup vegetable oil (or ¼ cup oil plus ¼ cup applesauce)
2 cups peeled, cored and chopped apple (about 2 apples)

For the cracked sugar topping

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
¼ cup white sugar
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
4 teaspoons butter

Preheat oven to 350º. Line 18 muffin cups with paper liners.

In a large bowl, sift together 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour, 2 cups sugar, pumpkin pie spice, baking soda and salt.

In a separate bowl, mix together eggs, pumpkin and oil.

Add pumpkin mixture to flour mixture; stirring just to moisten. Fold in apples.

Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups.

In a small bowl, mix together 2 tablespoons flour, ¼ cup sugar and ½ teaspoon cinnamon. Cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Sprinkle topping evenly over muffin batter (about 1 teaspoon of topping per muffin)

Bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into a muffin comes out clean.

Thanks for stopping by my kitchen today! I hope I’ll see you again tomorrow!

18 Oct 2010 Pear Crisp

Ahhh, fall comfort food!  I love baked pears and I love an oatmeal rich crisp topping.  This is a basic Pear Crisp recipe, if you want something fancier, check out my Drunken Pear Crisp with Cherries recipe.  I cut this recipe from a Cooking Light magazine years ago.  I’ve fooled with it quite a bit, more spices, more oatmeal, more pears… LOL!  The quantities here fit nicely into a 8 or 9 inch square baking pan.  If you have a lot more pears, just up the quantities by by 50% and bake in a 9 inch by 13 inch pan.

Ummm, true confession time.  We like this best at room temperature, for breakfast.  Hey! It’s oatmeal! It’s fruit!

A few years ago I asked my son to type the recipe out for me, with my changes. He did, but he embellished it a bit. I have retyped his version here, edited just a bit for clarity.  He was young at the time, not the big hunk of 19 year old masculinity he is now… Nevertheless, he’s going to crawl into a cave and hibernate when he finds out his mom published this on her blog. Oohhhhhhh, the embarrassment of it all! Don’t anyone tell him about this, puleeeeeese!

My Lovely Mom’s Pear Crisp

6 cups sliced ripe pears (5 or 6 lbs)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
A tiny bit of hard work
½ cup sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
A whole bunch of JOY
1/3 cup flour
½ cup packed brown sugar
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon nutmeg
3 tablespoons chilled butter
2/3 cup old fashioned oats
½ cup chopped walnuts (if you must)
A pinch of happiness

Directions

Look around you.  Take in your surroundings.  Be thankful. Feel wonderful about yourself and those around you. {Laugh at your son. He’s so FUNNY!} Read the recipe and do what it says.

Preheat oven to 375º.

Combine peeled and sliced pears with the lemon juice, toss gently to coat and then place in baking dish.

In another bowl combine sugar, cornstarch, 1 teaspoon cinnamon and ¼ teaspoon nutmeg. Stir to combine.  Pour mixture over over pears and mix lightly.

Do one thing, every day, that you have never done before.

In the same bowl (because it’s empty now and who wants to wash another dish?) combine flour, brown sugar, another ½ teaspoon cinnamon and another ¼ teaspoon nutmeg.  Cut in 3 tablespoon cold butter or grate the butter into the flour mixture with a grater (that’s what my mom does) and combine until the mixture looks like coarse bread crumbs.  Stir in oats and optional nuts.  Sprinkle mixture evenly over pear mixture in the baking pan.

Bake at 375º for 30-40 minutes or until pears are tender and topping is golden brown.  Cool at least 20 minutes before eating (hot pears in melted sugar burn).

Smile. You’re all done.

My son is home from college today.  I made this for our breakfast tomorrow.  He and I will enjoy some Pear Crisp and some lattes.  I’ll read the newspaper.  He’ll read something about American history…and then we will probably argue about something stupid.

Thanks for stopping by my kitchen today, hope you enjoyed the Pear Crisp!

16 Oct 2010 Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins

My new favorite pumpkin recipe, and my new favorite muffin recipe, just in time for your fall weekend baking:  Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffin!  Am I your favorite food blogger, or what?!  This recipe is all over the food blogs right now, and I am a bit late-for-the-train in posting it (one of the casualties of the lost camera saga).

This muffin has been likened to the Starbucks Cream Cheese Pumpkin Muffins.  I think that’s a fair comparison, but I like this recipe better, for two reasons.  One,  I think the Starbucks muffin cook is heavy handed with the cloves, this recipe has no cloves, and that’s a very good thing.   Two, you can make two dozen of these muffins for the cost of buying just two muffins from Starbucks. Yes.  I said twenty-four muffins.

Unfortunately this recipe makes 24 muffins.  Not that I am opposed to 24 muffins, but I hardly ever need or want that many.  I try to have each muffin recipe make 12 muffins, which is usually more than enough for a home cook. I tried to cut this recipe in half and I tried to cut it down to two-thirds.  Neither attempt worked.  The muffins were dry.  The twenty-four muffin recipe is not dry, so you’ll just have to make them all.  Invite the neighborhood over!  Drop some off at a friend’s house! Have a bake sale!  Give some to the gardener or your child’s teacher! These muffins stay moist for several days.

Start this recipe the night before.  The cream cheese filling needs to sit in the freezer for at least a few hours, and overnight is fine, before baking.  That’s ANOTHER great thing about this recipe. FINALLY, a method that works for inserting a cream cheese layer into a baked goods.  Ohhh, it’s a good day to be stopping by my kitchen!

I have inserted three options for the topping of the muffins.  The fourth option is to not add a topping to the muffin.  These muffins really don’t need a sweet topping. The cream cheese layer, and the muffin itself, are sweet enough.  I found the struesel layer to be just a bit too much.  Imagine me saying that!  Me,  a Sweet Tooth Queen!  I like the idea of sprinkling a few pumpkin seeds on top (the green ones, pepitas), which is what Starbucks does, but I couldn’t find pumpkin seeds the last time I was at the store.  The muffin above has a slight sprinkling of raw sugar on top. I like the little crunch.

So, without any further ado…

Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins

Cream Cheese Filling

8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 cup powdered sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla

Optional Streusel Topping (see notes above):

½ cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup sugar
¼ cup pecans, chopped finely
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
½ teaspoon cinnamon

Alternate toppings: a sprinkling of green pumpkin seeds (Pepitas) or raw sugar

Pumpkin Muffin Batter:

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
¼ teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 tablespoons pumpkin pie spice
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
½ teaspoon salt
1 ¼ cups canned solid-pack pumpkin (or 1 ¼ cups fresh pumpkin puree, drained)
3 eggs, lightly beaten
1/3 cup vegetable oil
½ teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions

The night before: Make the cream cheese filling. In a medium bowl, beat the cream cheese and confectioners’ sugar until smooth. Add the vanilla, and blend to combine. Form the mixture into a log on a piece of plastic wrap, wrap it, and freeze it overnight, or at least an hour or two.

Preheat oven to 350 ºF. Line two 12-cup standard muffin tins with paper liners. Set aside.

Combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and spices in a large bowl. In another bowl, lightly beat the pumpkin, eggs, oil and vanilla.  Make a well in the center of the flour mixture, and pour the pumpkin mixture into the well. Mix with a fork just until moistened.

Remove the cream cheese from the freezer, and divide it into 24 slices. (I usually cut the log into 12 pieces then cut each of those pieces in half)

Evenly divide half of the batter among the muffin cups-about one tablespoon of batter in the bottom of each muffin cup. Place 1 slice of the cream cheese filling in the center of each cup.  Top the cream cheese with another tablespoon of batter.  Cover the cream cheese completely.

Sprinkle top of muffins with pumpkin seeds, raw sugar OR this Pecan Streusel. In a medium bowl, combine flour, sugar, pecans, butter and cinnamon. Sprinkle some of the pecan streusel on top of each muffin.

Place muffins in a preheated oven and bake until golden, about 20 to 25 minutes. Cool on wire racks.  Muffins should be served at room temperature.  Hot cream cheese is really not very appetizing.

Happy Fall!  Go on, bake a batch of these, enjoy them with your family, friends and neighbors.  Here’s a picture of my grandson enjoying his.  He loves his Grandma’s muffins <3

13 Sep 2010 Veganized! Banana Chocolate Chip Coffeecake

This is a lovely, moist banana cake with a crunchy, cinnamon-y, chocolate chip-y topping. I reduced the amount of sugar in the original recipe from 3/4 of a cup to 2/3 cup and eliminated the struesal layer in the center since the topping has both brown sugar and chocolate chips. It’s plenty sweet and I think it may have brought out the banana flavor of the cake a little more. I wasn’t happy with the egg substitution that I used the first time around so I went with the silken tofu in lieu of an egg. It really improved the texture and the crumb of the cake. This is an easy recipe and a great little cake for snacking or breakfast.

Thanks for the inspiration, Polly!

Vegan Banana Chocolate Chip Coffeecake

For topping:

1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/3 cup organic brown sugar
1/3 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
1 ½ tsp. cinnamon

For coffeecake:

2/3 cup organic sugar
1/2 cup non-dairy margarine, at room temperature (I like Earth Balance)
1/4 cup silken tofu
3 T soy milk + 1/4 tsp cider vinegar
1 1/3 cup mashed very ripe bananas (about 3, large)
1 1/2 cup all purpose, unbleached flour
3/4 tsp. baking soda
3/4 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat a 9 x 9 x 2 inch baking pan with non-stick spray and mash the bananas in a small bowl. In another bowl stir together chocolate chips, brown sugar, walnuts, and cinnamon and set aside. In your blender (or Magic Bullet) combine the soy milk and vinegar and set aside to curdle.  In the large bowl, cream the margarine and sugar until light and fluffy. I’ve used both a whisk and a mixer for this and either one worked fine. Add the silken tofu to the soy milk mixture in the blender and whirl ’til creamy. Stir the mashed banana and tofu/soy milk mixture into the creamed margarine and sugar. Mix ’til everything is nice and gloppy and then add the flour in 1/2 cup increments. Stir in the baking powder, baking soda and salt.  Pour the batter into a prepared pan and top with the chocolate chip/nut mixture. Bake at 350 degrees for 35 – 45 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean (mine was done after 35 minutes).

30 Aug 2010 Peach Crumble Bars

Peaches are really good this year, which is good news after a few disappointing crops the last few years.  I’ve enjoyed some delicious, chin dripping peaches this summer.  Topping that, I’ve also had success with two new recipes using fresh peaches.  Here’s the first.  Move over brownies.  Move over lemon bars.  There’s a new kid in town: Peach Crumble Bars.  I like this recipe becasue the peach layer is composed of fresh peaches, not canned, not peach jam, real fresh peaches!  The crumbly cakey layer is light and buttery (whoa…light and buttery?  LOL…yes!).  Next time I would like to add some vanilla into the crumb layer; I don’t think vanilla extract will work, so it would have to be vanilla bean or vanilla paste.  Even without the vanilla, this recipe is a winner, juicy, chin dripping, peaches, with cake, in an easy-to handle bar.  What could be better? According the websites I consulted, this recipe can also be made with blueberries and raspberries, so it’s a versatile recipe, too!

I found this recipe at Annies-Eats and she found the basic crumb bar recipe at Smitten Kitchen.  Both sites have better pictures than I do…  One of these days I need to either find a photographer or take a food photography class.  I think I had better start looking for a friend who wants to photograph food–payment being the food that’s being photographed!

Peach Crumble Bars

1½ cups sugar, divided use
1 tsp. baking powder
3 cups all-purpose flour
¼ tsp. salt
Zest of half a lemon
16 tbsp. (2 sticks….ouch) cold, butter cut into small pieces
1 egg, lightly beaten
5 cups peeled, chopped peaches (about 5 peaches)
5 tsp. cornstarch
Juice of 1 lemon
freshly grated nutmeg, to taste (I used about 1/4 of a whole nutmeg)

Preheat the oven to 375° F.  Grease a 9 x 13? pan; set aside.

In a medium bowl, combine 1 cup of the sugar, the baking powder and flour.  Mix in the salt and the lemon zest, and stir together with a fork. Cut in the butter with a pastry blender until the largest chunks are about pea-sized.  (I grate the butter, with a cheese grater.  Roll the butter in the flour mixture, grate, roll butter in flour mixture again if butter gets too soft to grate easily).  Combine well.  Stir in beaten egg. The resulting mixture should be crumbly without much loose flour.  Spread a bit more than half of the dough mixture in an even layer over the bottom of the prepared pan and press down firmly to form the bottom crust.

In another bowl, stir together the remaining 1/2 cup sugar, cornstarch, lemon juice and nutmeg. Gently mix in the peaches with a rubber spatula until combined.  Sprinkle the fruit mixture evenly over the crust.  Crumble the remaining dough over the top of the peaches.

Bake for about 45 minutes or until the top is slightly golden brown.  Cool completely before cutting into squares and serving. Eat within 48 hours, which shouldn’t be too difficult.

Thanks for stopping by my kitchen today.  I love your visits!