Friday, September 10, 2010

..Welcoming Fall..

Yesterday I was back on the "creating traditions" band wagon, as I prepared for this new season approaching - Fall :) Every year since Brad and I were married I've tried to do things that felt "fallish"...usually involving food, because, that's what I know. And of course the occasional trip to orchards, pumpkin patches, etc. Which, we are doing next month! Yesterday was day #1 of Autumn Desserts in our home - for the month of September I'm doing all apple desserts. This one was super easy and just the perfect size!

Spiced Apple Cake

11 T. unsalted butter, softened
1 1/4 c. packed dark brown sugar
1 1/2 c. peeled apple slices, any variety
2 c. all-purp flour
2 t. baking powder
1/4 t. ground cloves
1/2 t. ground allspice
1/4 t. salt
2 eggs
2/3 c. milk
(whipped cream - optional)

1) Place 3 T. of the butter in a 9in. round nonstick cake pan. Coat sides of pan with nonstick spray. Place pan in oven while heating to 325. When butter is melted, remove pan from oven. Sprinkle with 1/4 c. sugar. Carefully fan apple slices, overlapping, in pan.

2) Sift flour, baking powder, cloves, allspice and salt into a medium sized bowl. Set aside. In a large bowl, beat remaining 8 T. butter and remaining 1 c. sugar until smooth. Beat in eggs. Add half of the flour mix, the milk, then remaining flour. Beat until smooth. Pour into pan. (I use my stand mixer for this)
3) Bake cake at 325 for 1 hour, or until toothpick inserted comes out clean. Run a butter knife around the edge of the cake; invert onto serving plate. Remove pan; replace any stuck apples - serve warm and with whipped cream! :) {garnish with nutmeg or cloves dusting}

While I was working on this cake - I tried my hand at homemade {from scratch} Gnocchi. I love the stuff at restaurants and was planning on making Gnocchi Alfredo casserole for dinner. I had gone to 2 stores looking for the refrigerated, pre-made kind and no one had them. So, I thought... can't be that hard, right? {snicker, snicker} I will tell you... it's not that it's super difficult but that it takes sooooo much time. I think I worked on just the gnocchi part of dinner for well over an hour. But it was worth it! The recipe I used was found in the Good Housekeeping Cookbook and was two pages long - so, yea, won't be sharing that one on here...but you can def find recipes all over the web or in your cookbooks at home if interested. But I do have some pics of my progress along the way! This was a huge accomplishment for me, and, my family loved them!

So, after you boil potatoes, peel them (while still hot), put them through a hand held food mill or ricer, combine with flour and salt, roll them out, cut them... then you are almost done. I didn't do the fancy fork tine impression on them, simply because it already taking so long I couldn't imagine spending another 15 minutes making them look pretty. :/ But I did boil them and plop them into my dinner recipe and then we waited 30 minutes while the smell of parmesan cheese filled the kitchen.

The end result was well worth the effort - and our first FALL meal was a success!

1 comment:

Amy@My Front Porch said...

Well, now aren't you just a little Betty Crocker? :) I'm totally in awe of your cooking skills. Those both look delish -- I think I'd be up for trying the cake but I'll leave the homemade gnocchi cooking to you. I probably don't have the patience for it :)