Friday, October 29, 2010

Recipe Friday: Caramel Apple Bread Pudding

Caramel Apple Bread Pudding

5-6 c. raisin bread from Wal-Mart (or a moist dense bread, takes 1/2 loaf)Picture of the bread here
3 c. apples, peeled and chopped into small pieces
4 eggs
3 egg yolks
1 1/2 c. milk
1 1/2 c. heavy cream
3/4 c. brown sugar
1/4 c. sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. almond extract
2 tsp. pumpkin or apple pie seasoning (I use 1 tsp of each)
1 Tbsp. butter, chopped
1 recipe Buttermilk Syrup (below)

Preheat oven to 350. Lightly grease or spray a 9x13" baking dish with shortening or non-stick cooking spray.

1. In a large bowl, toss together the bread cubes and the apple pieces. Transfer to the baking dish. In the same large bowl, whisk together the remaining ingredients except for the butter. When combined, continue to whisk while pouring over the bread/apple mixture (just to make sure the spices are evenly distributed).

2. Gently combine the bread and egg mixture, making sure each piece of bread is soaking in part of the egg and milk mixture. Allow to stand for at least 15 minutes (longer, if you can; you could even do this the night before, cover it tightly, and then bake it in the morning).

3. When the egg/milk mixture has mostly soaked into the bread, dab the butter over the bread and place the baking dish in the preheated oven and bake for 40-50 minutes or until the center is set but not dry or burned.

Remove from oven and allow to stand for 5 minutes. Cut into pieces and serve with warm Buttermilk Syrup (and vanilla ice cream if you really want to walk on the wild side.)

Buttermilk Syrup

3/4 c. buttermilk
1 1/2 c. sugar
1 stick real butter
2 Tbsp. corn syrup
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. vanilla

1. Combine buttermilk, sugar, butter, corn syrup, and baking soda in a LARGE pot. Like one you'd make soup in. Yes, you'll have way more pot than ingredients (and I'm not referring to the green leafy stuff), but this will boil all over your newly-cleaned stove if you put it in a smaller saucepan.

2. Bring ingredients to a boil and reduce heat to low (as long as it's still bubbling, you're okay). Cook, stirring very frequently, for 8-9 minutes. You're basically making candy here and candy-making requires constant vigilance.

3. When it's done, it should take on this luscious golden-brown color. Remove from heat and add vanilla.There will be foam on top. It tastes just as good, but it's not super pretty. If you're into aesthetics, you can skim it off; otherwise, just give it a good stir.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Cranberry Bread: Recipe Friday

I made this bread from this site:

Cranberry Bread

2 cups Flour
1-¼ cup Light Brown Sugar, Packed
1-½ teaspoon Baking Powder
½ teaspoons Baking Soda
1 teaspoon Salt
1 whole Large Egg, Beaten
¾ cups Milk
4 Tablespoons Butter, Melted
1 bag (12 Ounces) Bag Of Fresh Cranberries
1 Tablespoon Raw Sugar

Preparation Instructions

Grease and flour a 9- by 5-inch loaf pan. Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Mix flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl. Meanwhile combine egg, milk and butter in a small bowl. Add wet mix to dry mix and combine thoroughly then stir in cranberries. Pour batter into prepared pan. Sprinkle with raw sugar. Bake until golden brown and a cake tester comes clean, about 1 hour 15 minutes. Let cool a few minutes. Run a knife around pan to loosen bread. Turn onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Friday, October 15, 2010


I'm headed to see Karen in a few weeks. She's setting up a church function, the ladies will hear testimony from the owner of a gourmet cupcake shop speak about her business. The invitations are going to be adorable.

There will be some drawings for door prizes and some gift bags for each participant. I am excited to go and spend time with my daughter.

SHe's found a very cute blog with some unusual cupcake recipes that I think I'll try before going to visit. It's a mini pumpkin pie baked into the center of a cupcake. What a clever idea. Pumpkin pie is my DD's all time favorite they need to do one with pecan for Sonny.


Pumpkin Pies:
1 batch favorite Pie crust dough (or use refrigerated)
15 oz. can pumpkin (make filling according to can directions)
1 1/c sticks unsalted butter at room temperature
8 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
3 eggs
2 t. vanilla
2 t. baking powder
½ t. baking soda
½ t. salt
1 1/3 c. whole milk
2 ½ c. flour
For the butter cream:
1 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
8 oz. cream cheese room temperature
1 c. powdered sugar
1 c. Hershey’s cinnamon chips
Splash whole milk
Pre-heat the oven to 425 degrees (F).
First, prepare the pumpkin pies. Mix up the pumpkin pie mix according to the can’s directions (or make your own-fancy!). Roll out the pie crust dough and cut it into small circles that are large enough to cover the bottom and sides of mini cupcake tins (I used the opening of a small juice glass as a cutter).
Press the dough into the lightly greased mini cupcake tins, and then fill them with the pumpkin pie mix. (Don’t go all the way to the top, the filling will expand a little while baking.)
Bake the pies for about 7 minutes at 425 degrees (F), and then turn the oven down to 350 degrees (F) and bake them for another 10 minutes or so, until the crust is brown and the filling is completely set.
After taking them out of the oven, cool them on a wire rack for about 10 minutes then take them out of the pan and allow them to cool further while you mix up the batter.
For the cupcake batter, combine the butter and the cream cheese together on medium speed for about 90 seconds—you want the ingredients to be well incorporated. Then mix in the sugar until the mixture is fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, and then the vanilla, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Then mix in the milk and the flour, alternating between the two ingredients. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl, to make sure everything is getting well-mixed—beat again on med-high speed for about a minute. It should be smooth and creamy.
Spoon a heaping tablespoon of batter into regular-sized, paper-lined cupcake tins. Plop a cooled pumpkin pie into the center, and press gently into the batter. GENTLY. You don’t want it to touch to the bottom of the pan.
Cover the pies with another heaping tablespoon of batter, so the top and sides are completely covered.
Bake at 350 degrees (F) for about 25 minutes, until the cake is set and the edges and tops of the cupcakes have turned golden brown.
Allow them to cool in the cupcake tray for at least 10 minutes before moving to a wire rack—they’ll be a little fragile at first.
Once the cakes are cool, frost them!
To make the butter cream, melt down the cinnamon chips with a splash of whole milk. Pop them in the microwave for about 45 seconds on high. Stir until all the chips are melted, and allow it to cool a bit while you whip up the rest of the frosting (you can put the bowl in the fridge, it’ll cool faster that way, and the milk will keep it from solidifying).
Cream together the butter and cream cheese until they’re well incorporated. Then whip in the powdered sugar, a cup at a time, until the mixture is smooth and creamy. With the mixer on low, drizzle in the cooled cinnamon chip “ganache” (if it’s too hot it’ll melt the butter cream and ruin it—you don’t want that). Put in about half, stop to taste it and decide if you’d like to add more. Some prefer it strong, others like it milder.
If you have any pie crust left over, roll it out and cut smaller discs and sprinkle them with a little bit of cinnamon and sugar. Bake them for about 10 minutes at 350 and look at that, a cute and tasty cupcake topper!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Pie Crust Recipe

I often get asked for this recipe. Nothing special. The secret to flaky crust is having cold water. I put ice in the water and set it aside, or sit it in the freezer in the hot summer. I measure the 1c. of water right before I add it to the crust.

Pie Crust

4 C. Flour
2 C. crisco
1 C. cold water

Measure the flour into the bowl of a kitchen aid mixer, cut the shortening into small pieces and add to the flour, mixing on low speed. When the flour and crisco looks like crumbs I shut the mixer off and add the cold water all at once. I then mix it just until combined. It will be very sticky. I place it into 4 equal size balls on saran wrap, wrap each individually and freeze. If I am using it for pies right away I put it in the fridge and let it rest for about 30 minutes. This makes the crust less elastic when rolling it out and the crust will get good and cold.

After I roll the crust and place it in the pie pan, I put it in the freezer while I mix the ingredients. This will let the fat in the crust chill. I also bake the pie at 400 degrees for the first 10 minutes. THis will 'set' the crust on the pie and it also helps to get the bottom crust cooked. After 10 minutes I turn the heat down to the recommended temperature to bake the pie according to the instructions.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Recipe Friday Oct. 1, 2010 Apple Cake

Apple cake from Bakerella's website:

Easy Apple Cake
3 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups oil
3 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
3 cups diced apples
1 cup chopped dates rolled in flour
1 cup chopped walnuts

1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup butter
1/4 cup milk

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking soda and cinnamon with a wire whisk and set aside.
Combine sugar and oil using a mixer until blended.
Add eggs and vanilla, mixing until combined.
Add flour mixture and mix well.
Stir in nuts, dates and apples. The batter will be very thick.
Pour into a greased and floured 9 X 13 pan and bake for 40-45 minutes or until done.
Cool cake and using a skewer, poke holes in cake.
Cook topping ingredients on stove until mixture bubbles.
Pour topping over cake letting some (ha… more if you like) seep into the cake.