Apple Crostata


Hello all–  This little dessert is actually a re-run.  I made it a couple weeks ago for Laurel and John in Wisconsin after we ran into beautiful apples at the Winter Farmers Market.  And it was so yummy, I tried again this week for our Monday night ladies.

It goes together pretty easily.  The tedious part is peeling and slicing those apples!  But it smells so inviting coming out of the oven, that buttery crust and cinnamon laced apples –and with a scoop of ice cream–just  perfect!


1 cup flour
1/4 cup sugar (plus a tsp for sprinkling)
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup cold butter (1stick)
5 tab. ice water

Apple Filling:
5 smallish (4 medium) apples
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup flour
2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. salt

Extra:  ice cream or whipped cream.

To make the crust, mix together the 1 cup flour, 1/4 cup sugar and salt in a mixing bowl.  Then with s pastry blender* or 2 forks, cut in the butter until it resembles coarse crumbs.  Then add the ice water and stir the mixture until forms a dough.

Roll out the dough on a counter dusted with flour, using a rolling pin.  Lift it carefully onto a baking sheet that has been lined with parchment.

Peel, core and slice the apples to smallish chunks.  Then drop them in a mixing bowl and stir in the 3/4 cup sugar, 1/4 cup flour, cinnamon and salt until the apples are all coated with the dry ingredients.

Spoon the apples into the middle of the rolled out crust.  Fold the edges of the crust up over the pile of apples, leaving the middle uncovered.  Sprinkle the teaspoon of sugar over the turned up edges of crust.

Pop the whole thing into a 400 degree oven for 20 to 25 minutes until the crust is golden and the apples are firm, but tender.  Serve it warm with whipped cream or ice cream.  So good!

*or use a food processor to cut it all together.


Easy Apple Tart

Hello all– When fall rolls around, I’m ready to start baking — with pumpkin and cranberries and apples, lots of apples.  But today the temperature topped off at 97 degrees! In October??! Yikes!!  So I’m just pretending it’s fall– and trying to stay cool.

But just in case it’s turning crisp and fall-ish where you live, here’s a quick and easy apple recipe.  Flakey pastry, tender apples and a sweet glaze.  It’s real fall baking…

1 sheet of puff pastry
3 medium apples, peeled, cored, cut in slices
1 tab. butter, melted
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp. cinnamon

1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 or 2 tab. whole milk (0r half & half)

Roll the of puff pastry onto a sheet of parchment.  With a sharp knife, score it 1/2 inch in from the edge.  (Don’t cut all the way through).

In a mixing bowl, stir together the butter, brown sugar and cinnamon.  Stir in the prepared apples to coat them completely.

Layer the apples in a pretty way over the crust– inside the scored marking.  Sprinkle any leftover brown sugar in the bowl over the apples.  Then pop the tart into a 350 oven for 30 to 35 minutes, until the apples are tender and the crust is golden.

While that’s baking, make the frosting by whisking together the powdered sugar and milk.  Set with 1 tablespoon of milk and add the second if you want the glaze to be thinner.  Drizzle it over the tart when you are ready to serve it up (good hot or cooled).  Enjoy!

Apple Fritter Bread


Hey there– When I was back at Laurel School, someone would often plant a big pink box of donuts on the teacher table in the morning to share around.  I was OK passing up the glazed donuts or the sprinkle ones, but if there was an apple fritter in that box, I could seldom resist cutting off a wedge to have with my pre-class mug of tea.

So when I ran across this recipe for apple fritter bread, I was on it!  Moist and fruity and also good with a big mug of tea.

2 large apples, peeled, cored, cut to chunks
2 tab. cinnamon, divided
1/3 cup brown sugar
2/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup canola oil
1 tsp. vanilla
2 eggs
1/2 cup milk
1  1/2 cups flour
1  3/4 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt

1/2 cup powdered sugar
1-2 tab. milk


Peel, core and cut the apples to smallish chunks and mix them in a bowl with 1 tablespoon of the cinnamon.

In another small bowl, mix together the 1/3 cup brown sugar and the remaining tablespoon of cinnamon.

Then in a larger mixing bowl stir together the 2/3 cup sugar, oil, vanilla, and eggs..  Next mix in the milk until it’s well blended.  Finally stir in the flour, baking powder and salt.

Then in a standard 9″ by 5″ loaf pan that has been sprayed with cooking spray, pouring half of the batter.  Spoon half of the apples over this first layer and then sprinkle on half of the brown sugar mixture.  Repeat for a second layer– batter, apples & brown sugar.

Put the loaf pan into a 350 degree oven for 50 to 60 minutes until it’s cooked through (test with a sharp knife to see if it comes out clean).

With a fork whisk together the powdered sugar and 1 tablespoon of milk.  If it seems too thick for the glaze you want, add another tiny splash  of milk.  After the bread has cooled for 10 minutes or so, drizzle on the glaze.  And enjoy!


Apple Cream Cake


Hello all– When the calendar flips over the autumn, my heart turns to apple cake.   I grew up on my mom’s cake– chock full of apples and walnuts.  (It’s the best Mom!!)**–   So when I saw this new apple cake version– layers of stacked apple slices in a custardy creamy filling, I couldn’t wait to try it.  It’s mildly sweet and delicate– and with a scoop on whipped cream on the side and an ample mug of tea, it’s just right for a fall day.

3 large apples
3 eggs
1 cup sugar
3/4 cup heavy whipping cream*
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup flour
1  1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
powdered sugar to dust the top


Core and peel the apples and cut them into thin slices with a mandolin or a good knife.  Set aside.

With an electric mixer (whisk attachment works best), beat the eggs and sugar on high speed for two minutes until it thickens a bit.  Turn the speed down to medium and beat in the whipping cream, vanilla, flour, baking powder and salt.  Fold in the apples with a spoon until they are all coated with the batter.

Spoon the apple mixture into a 8″ or 9″ springform pan (or cake pan) and put it into the oven at 325 degrees for 60 to 70 minutes, until it’s nicely browned on top and cooked through when you test it by sticking in a small knife to see if it comes out clean.

Let the cake cool completely to remove it from the pan.  Dust with powdered sugar through a sieve and serve with a nice little pile of whipped cream.   Luscious!

*I bought the pint size carton of whipping cream– used 3/4 cup for the recipe.  And the rest I beat with and mixture adding 1 tsp. powdered sugar and 2 tsp. vanilla instant pudding mix to sweeten and set it up well.
**Hi Mom!!  (I know my dear Mom always checks in here!  xox)img_1704

Whole Wheat Maple Apple Upside Down Cake


Hey there–  couple weeks ago we got a large heavy package in the mail.  It was from Alfie, our daughter-in-law’s dad.  He’s the kind of guy you just want to be best friends with, warm and friendly.  And it turns out he is a prolific maple syrup maker.  He taps trees all over his small town in upstate New York and gathers in his “sugar shack” with family and friends in early spring to churn out gallons and gallons of the best maple syrup!  And, thankfully, we are recipients of his generous syrup dispersal to people all over the country!  What a guy!

So in honor of Alfie, here’s a luscious maple-y upside down cake, with tender apples and sturdy whole wheat cake.  But the star of this dish is the maple syrup.  Thanks again Alfie!!

1/2 cup maple syrup
3 apples, peeled, cored and cut in slices
2/3 cup whole wheat four
2/3 cup all purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
2 eggs
1/2 cup buttermilk*
1/2 cup canola oil
2 tsp. vanilla

Spray a 10″ cake pan** lightly with cooking spray.  Pour in the maple syrup to coat the bottom of the pan.  Then arrange the apple slices neatly to cover the syrup.

In a mixing bowl, stir together the 2 flours, sugar, baking powder and salt.  Next mix in the eggs, buttermilk, oil and vanilla.

Spoon the mixture over the apples carefully to cover them all.  And put the cake into a 350 degree oven for 45 to 55 minutes until the cake is golden and firm to the touch.  You can test it by sticking in a toothpick and seeing if it comes out clean.

While the cake is still hot from the oven, cover it with a large plate.  Then flip the plate and cake over so that the cake falls from the pan onto the plate.  If it doesn’t fall right out, gently lift one edge of the cake pan just half an inch and the seal will break and the cake will plop down onto the plate.

Best serve warm with a nice scoop of whipped cream.  Delish!

*In place of buttermilk, I used 2 tab. cider vinegar and filled up to 1/2 cup with regular milk. Let it sit a couple minutes to thicken.



Rum Apple Cake

IMG_1740Hi there– When I came upon this recipe, it really caught my eye– chunky apples popping out all over and it’s flavored by rum instead of the usual cinnamon.  This little cake has more apples than batter, so it’s almost like eating apple pie– in a cake!  (does that possibly make sense?)

Anyway, We had it with friends and mugs of coffee on an evening las week.  I think you might like it at one of your meals with family and friends ahead…

4 medium apples, peeled, cored and cut into 1″ chunks
1 cup flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
3 tab. light rum
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 cup canola oil
powdered sugar for dusting


Peel & core the apples and cut them into nice large 1″ chunks

In a mixing bowl, stir up the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar.  Then mix in the eggs rum, vanilla, and oil.  Finally fold in the apples.

Spoon the batter into an 8″ cake pan* spray with cooking spray.  Bake it in the oven at 350 degrees for 50 to 60 minutes, until the cake is a pretty brown and the apples are tender.

When it’s cooled, dust the top with powdered sugar through a sieve.  Enjoy!

*I used a springform pan to be able to remove the cake easier.


Apple Custard Cake

DSC01558APPLE CUSTARD CAKE– This is a recipe adapted from Dorie Granspan’s  famous Paris kitchen.  She says it’s a recipe she keeps in her pocket to make on the spur of the moment.  All ingredients you probably have on hand and it’s creamy and custardy– just the best kind of old fashioned cake.

3 apples, peeled, cored and sliced thinly
1/2 cup flour
1 tsp. baking powder
2 eggs
1/3 cup sugar
pinch of salt
2 tsp. vanilla
6 tab. whole milk (or half & half)
2 tab. butter, melted
powdered sugar to shift on top as you serve it

In a mixing bowl whisk the eggs, sugar and salt for 2 minutes until it turns a pale yellow.  Stir in the vanilla, milk and butter.  Then whisk in the flour and baking powder.

Fold in the apples until every slice is coated with batter and then turn it all out into a 9″ or 10″ cake or tart pan that has been sprayed with cooking spray.  It will be bumpy and lumpy.  Just smooth it out the best you can.

Bake it up at 400 degrees for 25 to 35 minutes until it’s beautifully golden on top.  Dust it with powdered sugar through a sieve just as you’re ready to serve it.  It’s delicious still warm and always better with a mound of whipped cream at it’s side.

Caramel Pecan Apple Cobbler


Hello there–  I wish I were my friend Janet.  I’ve had apple cobbler at her table– It’s delish!  And she just walks out in the backyard and picks the apples off her old apple tree just like a farmer!! And whips them up into a dessert.   I have to trudge to the market for mine.  But in the end, we both have a sweet plates of cobbler– and all the better with caramel and pecans.  Wherever you get your apples, I’m hoping you get a few heaping servings of apple cobbler this fall…

4 cups tart apples
1/2 cup caramel sauce*
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 cup flour
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
dash salt
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
1/2 cup pecans

ice cream & a little extra caramel sauce to top your cobbler

In a mixing bowl stir together the brown sugar, flour, cinnamon and salt.  Then cut in the butter with a pastry blender (or a food processor) until it resembles coarse crumbs.  Stir in the pecans.  Set aside.

Peel and core the apples.  Then cut them into small chunks and spread them into a 9″ or 10″ pie dish sprayed with cooking spray.  Drizzle the 1/2 cup caramel evenly over the apples.

Spoon the flour-pecan mixture over the apples and pop them into the oven at 375 degrees for 30 to 35 minutes.

Most luscious served warm with ice cream and little more caramel sauce…

*If you’re more ambitious than I am, you can make your own caramel sauce– I really like the Hershey’s caramel in the jar.  Thin enough to pour and buttery good.


Fall Salad– Kale, Apples & Bacon

IMG_2882Hey there– This salad has so many yummy ingredients that I wanted to put all of them in the title– Hmmm.  So I narrowed it down to kale, apples and that bacon!  BUT– I would now also like to mention– the pumpkin seeds and currants– and the luscious poppy seed-mustard dressing bringing it all together.

We had it for lunch on Sunday and liked it so much it was on the table again tonight.  I think you might like a bunch too!

2 cups kale, chopped fine
6 to 8 Brussel sprouts, cut to shreds
2 slices bacon, cut to bits
1 red apple, slides and cored
1/4 cup currants*
1/4 cup pumpkin seeds

1/4 cup olive oil
2 tab. tarragon vinegar**
1 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. seedy Dijon Mustard***
1 tsp. poppy seeds
a couple shakes of salt & twists of freshly ground pepper

Cook the little bits of bacon in a skillet.

Then while the bacon’s on the stove, layer the kale Brussel sprouts and apples on a pretty platter.  Sprinkle on the currants and pumpkin seeds.

When the bacon’s cooked, drain in on a paper towel and let it cool.  Then sprinkle it over the salad.

Put he dressing ingredients, oil, vinegar, sugar, mustard, poppy seeds and salt & pepper into a small container with a tight fitting lid.  Shake it well until it’s all blended.  Pour it over the salad when you’re ready to dig in.

*The recipe I worked from called for dried cranberries, but currants are my fave.  Pick your favorite dried fruit…
**You can use any mild vinegar–cider, red wine…  Tarragon is my “go to” vinegar– mild and slightly sweet.
***If you live near a Trade Joe’s– check the Seedy Dijon mustard there– not too spicy and perfect in dressings, in sauces, on sandwiches.  Love that stuff!

Apple Amaretto Cake

IMG_2424Hello all–  It’s apple time.  When fall hits, I’m just itching to start baking apple-y desserts. So happily, when I ran across this recipe for this “boozy” apple cake, I knew what I wanted to have in the oven for friends coming in last week.  It’s chock full of apples and with a little whipped cream on the plate, just about perfect for fall.

2 Granny Smith apples, peeled cored & cut in big chunks
1 tab. powdered sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tab. amaretto
3/4 cup butter (1 1/2 sticks)
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
2 cups flour
1 tab. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
2 tab. amaretto
1 tsp. vanilla
1/4 cup milk
1/2 cup sliced almonds
2 tab. powdered sugar

Peel and cut the apples.  Then drop them in a bowl with the 1 tab. powdered sugar, cinnamon and 1 tab. amaretto.  Set aside for later.

In a mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar with an electric mixer until it it light and fluffy.  Then beat in the eggs.  And finally add the other ingredients, flour, baking powder, salt, 2 tab. amaretto, vanilla and milk– blend with the mixer.

Then spoon 2/3 of the batter into a 10″ springform pan that has been sprayed with cooking spray.  Spread the prepared apples over the batter in the pan.  Then add on the remaining batter in little dollops all over the top with a spoon (the apples will not be completely covered).  Sprinkle the almonds over the top.

Then pop the cake into the oven at 350 degrees for 45 to 50 minutes.

After it cools a bit dust the top of the cake with powdered sugar through a sieve.  Lovely served warm with whipped cream…

Here it is hot, just out of the oven…

Caramel Apple Cake

IMG_7550Hi there all you cake lovers– There’s nothing more homespun than this little cake.  It’s the kind of cake you’d take to your grandma, if you were dropping in for a mug of tea with her– and seeing as Mothers’ Day is just around the corner, that might be a fine idea.  What grandma doesn’t love cake (and you too).

3 apples, peeled, cored, cut into chunks
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup canola oil
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped (optional)**
1/2 cup caramel ice cream sauce*

In a large mixing bowl, stir together the apples, sugar, old, egg and vanilla.  Then mix in the flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon.  –plus walnuts, if you like.

Spoon the batter into a 9″ or 10″ cake pan sprayed with cooking spray.  Pop it into a 350 degree oven for 45 to 50 minutes, until the cake is browned and a knife inserted comes out clean.

While the cake is still hot and in the pan, poke the top with a fork to leave small holes all around for the caramel to seep into.  Pour the caramel over the hot cake and let it cool in the pan.  It’ best served up with a scoop of ice cream, of course.

IMG_7560*You can make your own yummy caramel sauce of course, but I think Hershey’s caramel sauce is just fine.
**I always toss in extra walnuts because I love their solid crunch– unless my Laurel is coming to eat and then no walnuts!  I leave them out altogether…

Yogurt Pancakes with Maple Apples

IMG_7795Good morning– Saturday morning.  Pancake time!!  When I read this recipe, I thought, “is this going to work?!”  Only 1 cup of flour with all that yogurt and buttermilk?  The answer is YES!  They were light and tender– and with the maple apples –exquisite.  I think I have a new Saturday morning go-to pancake recipe.

1 cup flour
2 tab. yellow cornmeal
4 tab. brown sugar
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup buttermilk*
1 cup unflavored yogurt
1 egg
2 tab. canola oil

Mix together the dry ingredients–flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder an salt in a pourable mixing bowl. (do you have one with a spout to pour out pancakes?)  Then blend in the buttermilk, yogurt, egg and oil.

Heat the griddle with butter or a spray of cooking spray. And cook the pancakes on medium until golden on both sides.  Makes about 15 lovely pancakes.

2 tab. melted butter
3 large apples, peeled, cored, cut into chunks
2 tab. maple syrup

Melt the butter in a nonstick skillet.  Drop in the apples and maple syrup.  Saute the apples for about 5 minutes, until they begin to brown a bit and are tender.  Serve with more maple syrup if you like (and I do!).


Chicken with Apples and Calvados (apple brandy)


Hello friends– Been away for a while, but wouldn’t want to miss a chance to send off the recipe for this lovely chicken that we tucked into for Christmas Eve lunch with the family.  Sweet apples laced with brandy and savory leeks all sauced up over chicken thighs.  It’a a nice special occasion dinner that doesn’t take too much time away from your special occasion to cook it up!  Hope you like as much as we did…

3 tab. butter
3 apples, peeled, cored and sliced
1 tab. olive oil +2 tab. butter
8 to 10 chicken thighs
1 leek, white & light green part
1/2 onion, chopped fine
1/2 cup Calvados (apple brandy)
1/2 cup apple cider
4 sprigs of thyme
2 bay leaves
1/2 cup chicken broth
2 tab. cornstarch
1/2 cup cream

IMG_6467Christmas Eve lunch– Chicken with apples and Calvados, roasted banana squash, rice medley with brussel sprouts & bacon, roasted asparagus…

In a large pan, sauté the apple in the butter until they are golden. about 10 minutes.  Set them aside on a plate.

In the same pan, splash in the olive oil and 2 tab. butter. When it’s hot, add the chicken thighs (I removed the skin, but they would be fine with skin on as well) to the pan and brown them, about 5 minutes on each side.  Remove the chicken to a plate.

Cut the leek lengthwise and them slice in crosswise into 1/2″ bits.  Add the leek and onion to the pan and cook until softened.  Then stir in the Calvados and cider.  Put the chicken back into the pan and top with the thyme and bay leaves.  Simmer on low for 20 to 25 minutes until the chicken is tender.  Remove it to a pretty platter and cover to keep warm.

Turn up the heat so the sauce in the pan is simmering.  Shake the cornstarch and cream together in a container with a tight lid until it’s all blended and stir it into the sauce to thicken it.  Add the apples for a minute or two and them pour them over the chicken to serve it up.

Apple Currant Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

IMG_5598Hello friends–  It’s that apple-y time of year.  And when my super cooking cousin, Brenda sent me this recipe via facebook, I knew it would be good!  Studded with apples, walnuts and tiny currant bursts of sweetness, its all an apple cake should be.  Then slather on the cream cheese frosting.  It’s pretty darn good.  Thanks bunches Brenda!!

2 medium apple, peeled, cored & chopped to small bits
3/8 cup butter (3/4 stick) at room temperature
3/4 cup sugar
1 egg
1/2 cup milk
1 cup flour
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
1/4 tsp. allspice
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
1/2 cup currants

Prepare the apples.  Then with an electric mixer cream together the sugar, butter and egg.  Blend in the milk.  And then mix in the flour, cinnamon, cloves, allspice and salt.  Finally with a spoon stir in the walnuts, currants and apples.  Spoon the whole bowlful of batter into a cake pan (or 9″ square baking dish) sprayed with cooking spray.  Bake at 350 degrees for 35 to 40 minutes until the cake is cooked through and firm to the touch.

1/4 cup butter (1/2 stick)
4 oz. cream cheese
1 tsp. vanilla
2 cups powdered sugar
Walnuts & currants to garnish

Beat together the butter, cream cheese and vanilla with an electric mixer.  Then slowly beat in the powdered sugar until it’s a  blended.  Spread it on the cake after it’s cooled completely. Garnish with walnuts and currants.

P.S.  I made this one layer version of the cake for my Bible Study Buddies– they’re dainty eaters.  You can double it for a standard two layer cake.

Maple Apple Pork Cutlets

IMG_5478Hi all– It’s the sauce, the glorious sauce, that makes this dish so delectable.  All the apple-y sweetness, not to mention the maple syrup, finished off with a bit of cream.  It’s a dish made for stay at home fall evenings, with a glass of wine, a bright salad and a loaf of rosemary bread.

6 pork loin cutlets (a little over a pound)
1 tab. olive oil
2 apples, peeled, cored and sliced
2 cloves garlic
1/2 cup apple cider
1/4 cup whipping cream (or half & half)
2 tab. maple syrup
2 tsp. fresh snipped thyme
thyme for garmish

Heat the olive oil in a large pan.  Brown the cutlets on high heat about 2 minutes on each side.  Remove them from the pan, leaving the juices.  Put the apples and garlic in the pan and saute for 2 minutes.  Then add the apple juice into the pan and simmer 4 minutes more.  Stir in the cream, maple and bits of thyme and simmer until it thickens, a few more minutes.

Nestle the pork chops in among the apples and leave it on low just until it’s all warmed through.  Serve it all up on a pretty plate and sprinkle on a few extra sprigs of thyme.

Maple Apple Crisp

IMG_5122Good morning!  I’m eating my Sunday breakfast right now as I type this up–warmed by the sunshine coming in the kitchen back door and digging into a largish bowl of apple crisp.  (yes, Laurel, with just a bit of breakfast ice cream!)

The apple crisp is actually leftovers from breakfast with 30 girlfriends yesterday.  They came pouring into the house for strata, apple crisp and Sue’s famous almond croissants.  It was a glorious morning of laughing and talking, hugging and praying together.  And lucky for me, there was leftover apple crisp!


5 large apples, peeled, cored and sliced
1/3 cup maple syrup
1/2 tsp. cinnamon

1/4 cup flour
1/2 cup whole rolled oats (oatmeal)
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup pecans (or walnuts)*

Prepare the apples into friendly size slices.  Mix them together with the maple syrup and 1/2 tsp. cinnamon.  Turn this all into a 9-10″ pie or tart pan sprayed with cooking spray.

Stir together the flour, oats, brown sugar and cinnamon.  Cut in the butter with a pastry blender or two forks until it all looks like coarse crumbs.  Mix in the pecans and sprinkle this all over the apples in the pan.  Bake it up at 350 degrees for 3o minutes until the topping is golden.  Do I need to mention this is best hot with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream?  Delish!

IMG_5108*If you love pecans as much as do, you’ll sprinkle an extra handful over the top just as you pop it into the oven– can’t have too many pecans!

Apple Peanut Cole Slaw

IMG_1350Hi friends– I don’t know if you love cole slaw as much as I do.  It just always tastes so crisp and fresh and cold.  And summery.  I got this version from our intrepid P.E. teacher at school, Janie .  An amazing woman, who taught right on through rounds of chemotherapy– and has an wonderful, joyful faith.  I like her a lot.  And her apple cole slaw too.

1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup cider vinegar
2 tab. sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
ground pepper to taste
1 small head of cabbage, cut to little bits*
2 green apples (I used tart Granny Smiths)
1/2 cup chopped peanuts (or more if you love nuts as much as I do)
1/2 red bell pepper, cut finely

In a large bowl, whisk together the olive oil, vinegar, sugar, salt and pepper until it is emulsified.  Then chop up that cabbage, cut the apples to small bits, chop the peanuts and pepper.  Then throw it all in with the dressing and mix it up.  That’s it!  Serve it up with bar-b-qued anything for good eating…

*You can cut up the cabbage in the food processor if you like it fine.  I just use a good old butcher knife and whack away so the chunks are a little larger.

Apple Yogurt Pancakes

IMG_9354Hi friends–Sunday lunch around our house often devolves into pancakes.  Sweet and light, these fit the bill for an easy Sunday lunch.  Serve them up with a little grilled turkey ham (love that stuff), some scrambled eggs and lots and lots of maple syrup.

1/2 cup unflavored yogurt
1 egg
3/4 cup milk
1 1/2 cups flour
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 medium apple, peeled and grated
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped fine

Mix together the yogurt, egg and milk.  Then stir in the flour, brown sugar, baking powder and salt.  Finally add in the apple and walnuts.  Heat the griddle and spray it with cooking spray.  Pour out those pancakes and give them a flip when you see bubbles. Makes about 12 substantial pancakes.

Apple Tart

Hello all–  OK, so it’s October!! But where are the cold, crisp days?  When can I pull on my jeans can comfy sweaters?  And build a fire in the fireplace?!!  I think it’s suppose to be 95 degrees today.  Yikes!  But at least I can do a little apple baking and pretend that it’s really fall.  So here’s a truly easy apple tart.  I think you’ll like it while you’re waiting for sweater weather wherever you are…

1 whole sheet of puff pastry*
3 apples, peeled, cored and cut into thin slices
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
a little powdered sugar
That’s all!

Take the puff pastry out of the freezer and separate the two sheets.  Set one out to defrost for 40 minutes or so and trundle the other one back into the freezer for next time.  When it’s defrosted unfold it and place it on a cookie sheet sprayed with cooking spray.  Arrange the apples tidily on the pastry, leaving at least a half inch border all the way around.  Sprinkle the apples with the salt and brown sugar.  Pop it into the oven for 18 to 20 minutes until the crust is nicely browned.  When you take it out of the oven, remove it to your serving platter quickly, so it’ doesn’t stick to the cookie sheet as it cools.  When it’s cooler dust on the powdered sugar with a sieve.

Serve it up warm or cooled.  Whipped cream or ice cream is always welcome on the plate along with your tart!  Happy Autumn!

*Puff pastry comes in a box with 2 sheets in the freezer section at the grocers.  I think I’m going for chocolate croissants with the sheet I haven’t used yet!  Let you know how that comes out!

Yogurt Pancakes with Maple Apples

Hey friends–  Sunday lunch I was happily flipping up these pancakes when it suddenly came to me that I was suppose to be meeting a young couple at church in about 20 minutes!!  Rats!  I’m sure you’ve never been so forgetful– So I pulled Larry away from the ball game to flip, while I raced off.  In spite of all that, the pancakes came out just fine.  You might like to try them…

1 cup flour
2 tab. cornmeal
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup buttermilk*
1 cup unflavored yogurt
1 egg
2 tab. canola oil

Stir together the flour, cornmeal, brown sugar, baking powder and salt.  Then add in the buttermilk, yogurt, egg and oil.  Mix til it’s all blended and pour on to a medium hot griddle sprayed with cooking spray.  They do expand (!) so don’t put them too, too close together.

2 tab. butter
3 apples, peeled, cored and sliced into chunks
1/2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice**
1/4 cup maple syrup  (plus more to serve with the pancakes!)

Melt the butter in the pan.  Stir in the apples until they cook through, about 5 minutes.  Then stir in the pumpkin pie spice and maple syrup.  Spoon them over the hot pancakes and dig in!

*In place of buttermilk (that I almost never have on hand), I used milk with a couple tablespoons of cider vinegar.
**No pumpkin pie spice?  Cinnamon works just fine.

The buttermilk and yogurt make these pancakes nice and tangy against the sweetness of the maple syrup and apples.  And thank you Bigarels for the huge jug of syrup mailed all the way from upstate New York.  We’re still enjoying it!  So thankful.