Sunday, November 13, 2016

Applesauce Cake with Penuche Frosting

It seems like just last month, we were grilling on our Weber and enjoying the last of our fresh corn, homegrown tomatoes and wearing our flip-flops. Fall has nudged is way back, and the internet recipe sites is proof of that.

It's time for pumpkin recipes, a hundred different ways to prepare turkey. The grocery store produce section is now loaded with mounds of squash, apples and grapes as big as golf balls. I adore pumpkin, but there are a lot of people who don't. I'd say there's something "off" with that, only I'm also one of those weirdos who doesn't care for squash-- except for the aforementioned pumpkin. As for apples, it's not my favorite pie, either. Pass me the pumpkin pie, and the whipped cream, while you're at it. Please.  For you pumpkin-haters, I have an alternative for you.

Applesauce Cake! Top it with a Fudge-like caramel-tasting cooked frosting, and you have a fall dessert that is a crowd pleaser. Now, that's my way of enjoying apples!

I adore spice cake/apple sauce cake as far back as my childhood. I think my love affair with Applesauce Cake started with a boxed cake mix. I believe it was Spice Cake. (Gosh, it's been a while since I was a kid, but I'm pretty sure that was it.) Applesauce and Spice Cake are cousins, I think. The spices are pretty much identical... cinnamon, allspice...cloves.

I omitted adding nuts, but I did add raisins (totally optional).  The applesauce, I believe, makes this cake really moist.

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Sunday, November 6, 2016

Kaiserschmarrn (Emperor's Cut-Ups) -- and a snippet of our trip to Europe

Craig and I returned from our two-week tour of Bavaria, Austria and Switzerland a couple of weeks ago. This trip was the best one, EVER, and I say that with a whole heart.   Well, maybe not WHOLE, because I feel as thought I left a piece of it in my mother's home town of Bad Reichenhall, Bavaria.

I lived there from age 3-8, and made four return trips -- some with my Mutti, and some without.  Then, my travel to Bavaria took a hiatus for the last 25 years.  I'll share a little about my trip, at the end of this post.

Kaiserschmarrn... this is a classic Austrian recipe for "cut up pancakes" that we saw on every menu, including in Bavaria.  These are very light and fluffy pancakes-- almost soufflé in texture--that are also served for breakfast or as a light evening meal.  In Bavaria, we saw this served with a plum compote or with apple sauce.

My mother used to make this for us, as kids, and to this day it is one of our favorite breakfast dishes.  Now my son and husband like this, and they are very easy to make.  The batter is very simple-- flour, milk, egg yolks and folded in egg whites.

It's cooked with clarified butter (or just melted is fine) until it becomes golden brown...

...the is carefully flipped over and cooked a few minutes more.

I served ours lightly dusted with powdered sugar and with homemade apple sauce.  I'm sure I'll make this a few more times, for nostalgic reasons.  We could have, easily, spent another week or two in Bavaria. The food, the beer, the scenery and historical places to visit exceeded our expectations.

I'm just scratching the surface of our trip details, but here's a snippet of our wonderful two week trip:

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Saturday, October 8, 2016

Auf Wiedersehen - Bavaria, Here We Come!

To my dear readers and friends, In just a few hours, my husband and I will board our non-stop flight to Frankfurt. We will take a bus-tour, including a Rhine River Cruise, and then travel through Germany, Switzerland, Austria and ending our trip to Munich-- with a few of King Ludwig's Castles throw in. My husband is thrilled that he can enjoy the scenery, and not have to worry about focusing on driving. Win! Once the bus tour ends, we'll pick up a car rental and drive to my mother's hometown of Bad Reichenhall, Bavaria.

Our family lived there, in our early years, while my father was stationed there at an Army base. I've gone back to visit family, but it's been 25 years since I was last there. My Oma was very old and ailing, and I knew this would be my last chance to say goodbye to her.

I have no desire to attend the big Oktoberfest (too many people, a bit too much drinking for my own taste). However, we will go to the famous Munich Hofbräuhaus for some beer, Bavarian food and music. That's a must!

I so wanted to find some time to post recipes, over the last few weeks, but it never happened. I was focused on making sure my work desk was tidy and my projects were finished. Our house sitters arrived, from Rhode Island, and we've been busy spending our evenings catching up on our 25 year friendship. So, I will leave you with a photograph taken from a web cam of my mother's home town.

We will return in two weeks-- but I will be posting photos on my Instagram Account, and on my Facebook Page.

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Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Root Beer Baked Beans with Bacon

Hello Friends! Today, I am sharing a very simple recipe for one of the tastiest beans I've ever made.

I almost didn't post this recipe, because I didn't take pictures of the cooking process, and only two quick shots of the finished recipe.  I made these beans as a side dish when I made Jamaican Jerk Chicken, for the second time-- it's that good!

It's funny, but root beer isn't my favorite beverage of choice, unless you serve it in a frosty mug with a scoop (or two) of vanilla ice cream.   With this recipe, root beer is deglazed just enough to give a sweet and savory flavor to these beans.

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