Archive for October 13th, 2011

October is apple month and with it comes many fall festivals, bake sales, craft shows and the beginning of the cooking season.  This morning I spent whipping up (literally) several dozen of these little gems. Only problem I kept running into was resisting the urge to stop licking the frosting in the bowl.

This recipe might sound complex, but it really isn’t.  The ingredients used are pantry staples aside from apple cider and apples which are in abundance this time of year.

Apple Cider Cupcakes (15 full size cupcakes, 30 mini cupcakes)

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter

2/3 cup sugar

1 2/3 cup flour

2 tsp baking powder

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp nutmeg

1/4 tsp salt

1 cup apple cider

2 eggs

1 cup apples, diced

Combine all ingredients in bowl and stir until well mixed.  Pour into greased or lined cupcake or mini cupcake pans.  Bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes for traditional cupcakes and 10-13 minutes for mini cupcakes.

*If you take this recipe, minus the spices and fruit, and replace cider for water you have the basic recipe for cupcakes and cakes.  Add your own ingredients and flavorings and you can make an abundance of tasty treats anytime.*

Maple Cinnamon Frosting

4 cups powdered sugar

1 stick melted butter

2 tbsp maple syrup

1/4 tsp ground cinnamon

Place in bowl and beat with hand mixer or use stand mixer until consistency desired for piping or spreading.  Add more confectioner sugar if needed to gain desired texture.  (This frosting is great on sugar cookies, molasses and spice cookies also.)

Caramel  Streusel Topping

1 cup flour

3/4 cup brown sugar

1 tbsp caramel ice cream topping

Use fork to combine ingredients until crumb texture.  Sprinkle on top cooled and frosted cupcakes.

I’m going to admit it, keeping this blog has been a challenge for me.  I am one of those people who cook by sight, touch and taste rather then measuring.  This blog has forced me to keep track of how much of what I put in recipes which probably is a good thing as I now have recipes to pass down to my children.  I still will go by sight, touch and taste at times however.  The frosting recipe being one such example. I find every time I make it, it might require more powdered sugar, or more liquid then the recipe did the time before to get same results.

These have been a fall hit  a few years running now.  I hope you enjoy them also.

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I love, love, love plums.  They to me are the fruit of the gods. For the holidays however, or really anytime, dressing them up a bit is a pleasant surprise and what better way then with maple syrup and whipped topping?  I’ve served these with pancakes and French toast for breakfast, pork for supper, or just as a side dessert with holiday turkeys and ham. To make them is extremely easy but yet they go over quite big.

Wash and cut your plums in half removing pit.  You can leave them halved or slice them up, however you prefer.  Place them in a casserole dish or cake pan and drizzle with maple syrup to coat.  Bake 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes or until insides are soft.

You can either serve these as is, or add a vanilla whipped topping to them.  To make the topping, simply stir a cup of Cool Whip style topping in a bowl with 1/4 cup of confectioner (powdered) sugar and 1 tsp vanilla extract.  Spoon over top…simple, easy and delicious!

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There was a question posed by a friend about what to do with apples that had lets just say lost their beauty quality.  Either being older and wrinkled, bruised, rodent nibbled or gotten a few worms.  When I was growing up, these apples were the norm and often found littered under my grandparents apple trees. Other then the store bought ones I don’t remember very often seeing what one would deem a “pretty” apple.  Few of these apples however went to waste.  Today I use the same logic and lessons taught me then with my own apple tree harvest.  Nothing goes to waste…and by this I do truly mean nothing.  The good flesh is sliced, diced or mashed to make into pies, pie fillings, cobblers, muffins, pancakes, fritters, cakes, donuts or applesauce.  The skin peeled away and some taken out to the chickens to eat.  Extra skin, seeds and rotten parts get thrown into the worm compost to be turned into good useable soil.

Easy Apple Cobbler

5 cups apples, peeled and sliced

1 cup sugar

2 tbsp cornstarch

1 tbsp cinnamon

1 tsp nutmeg

1 tsp allspice

1/2 tsp ground cloves

1 tbsp vanilla

1/4 cup melted butter

1/4 cup apple cider

Combine in bowl and pour into greased 8×8 cake pan.  In bowl combine following:

1 cup flour

1/2 cup sugar

1/4 cup melted butter

1/4 cup milk

1 tsp baking powder

1 egg, slightly beaten

1 tsp vanilla

1/4 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp nutmeg

Stir together to form a thick (muffin consistency) batter.  Spoon over top of apples and spread out with spatula to cover.

Cook at 375 degrees for 30 minutes.  Check with toothpick test.

**If batter to thin, add more flour…if to thick, add more milk**

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