Archive for the ‘apples’ Category

It’s February, and winter is far from over. Warm comfort foods to the rescue. This stew keeps you warm, and the gravy is fantastic. Very easy to make.

Chicken cider stew (modified slightly from Kitchen Parade)


2 tablespoons olive oil

1 large onion, chopped

1 rib celery, chopped

1 1/2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken breasts

2 carrots, chopped

2 sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped

1 apple, cored and chopped

2 cups apple cider

1 cup water

3 tablespoons ketchup

1/4 teaspoon savory, crushed

1/4 teaspoon basil, crushed

1 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/8 teaspoon pepper

2 tablespoons flour

Heat oil in large pot over medium heat. Add onions, celery, and chicken to the pot and saute, stirring regularly, until onions are golden and chicken is cooked through. Add carrots, sweet potatoes, and apple and let cook 3 – 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add apple cider, water, ketchup, salt, savory, basil, and pepper. Let simmer over low-medium about 20 minutes until carrots and sweet potatoes are cooked.

Put flour in small dish and slowly add 1/2 cup hot liquid from the stew to make a smooth paste. Stir into the hot stew and cook another five minutes. Makes 8 cups.


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Anything with pudding in it has got to be good.

This tasty little pudding cake, like most pudding cakes, goes into the oven with the batter on the bottom, and comes out with the cake on top and this wickedly gooey and moist pudding on the bottom. Sinfully good.

Apple cider pudding cake (from Dairy Free Tried and True blog)


1 cup flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ginger

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

1 egg

1 cup packed brown sugar

1/3 cup almond milk (or soy or rice milk)

2 tablespoons melted margarine

2 cups peeled and chopped Granny Smith apples

Boiling mixture:

1 cup apple cider

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon vanilla

1/2 cup brown sugar


1/4 cup flour

1/4 cup brown sugar

2 tablespoon margarine

Grease an 8×8″ square baking dish. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, salt, soda, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg. In another bowl, whisk together the egg, 1 cup brown sugar, almond milk, melted margarine, and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Stir in dry ingredients until just combined. Gently fold in apples and spread in prepared pan.

In a small saucepan, bring the boiling mixture ingredients to a boil. Pour slowly and carefully over the batter. Bake for 35 minutes.

Meanwhile, put streusel ingredients together with a food processor or pastry cutter until mixture is crumbly. After the cake has baked for 35 minutes, sprinkle streusel topping evenly over the cake and bake 8 – 10 minutes more. Serve warm. Makes 8 servings.

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Loving this dessert. It takes advantage of some of the seasonal fruits that you’ll find in the stores at this time of year – cranberries, apples, and oranges. My version includes nondairy adaptations, but you can find the original here.

Easy cranberry and apple cake

12 ounces fresh cranberries, rinsed and picked over for stems

1 Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored, and diced

1/2 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed

1 tablespoon grated orange zest (2 oranges)

1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice

1 1/8 teaspoons ground cinnamon, divided

2 extra-large eggs, at room temperature

1 cup plus 1 tablespoon granulated sugar

1/4 pound (1 stick) margarine, melted and slightly cooled

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1/4 cup soy sour cream

1 cup all purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.

Combine the cranberries, apple, brown sugar, orange zest, orange juice, and 1 teaspoon of the cinnamon in a medium bowl. Set aside.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the eggs on medium-high speed for 2 minutes. With the mixer on medium, add 1 cup of the granulated sugar, the margarine, vanilla, and sour cream, and beat just until combined. On low speed, slowly add the flour and salt.

Pour the fruit mixture evenly into a 10″ glass pie plate. Pour the batter over the fruit, covering it completely. Combine the remaining 1 tablespoon of granulated sugar and 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon and sprinkle it over the batter. Bake for 55 – 60 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the cake comes out clean and the fruit is bubbling around the edges. Serve warm or at room temperature.



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Think of your favorite coffee cake – I’m thinking moist, cinnamon-y, nutty. Now think of adding pumpkin to the flavors. There you have it – this delicious recipe. Mine did not come out as moist as a bread pudding, but it was a total win-win yummy dessert.

Pumpkin apple bread pudding (slightly adapted from Smokin’ Chestnut blog)

2 cups white whole wheat flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

pinch of nutmeg

1/3 cup applesauce

3 tablespoons honey

1/3 cup margarine, melted and slightly cooled

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 large eggs, beaten

2 – 3 tablespoons soymilk or almond milk

1 cup pumpkin puree

1 apple grated, roughly 1 cup

1/4 cup raisins

1/2 cup chopped apple

3/4 cup coarsely chopped pecans or walnuts

cinnamon and raw sugar for sprinkling

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and grease a 9″ loaf pan

In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.

In another bowl, combine applesauce, honey, melted margarine, vanilla extract, eggs, soymilk, and pumpkin puree. Mix the dry ingredients with the wet ingredients, and then add grated apple, raisins, chopped apple, and half the chopped nuts. Fold together until mixed well.

Pour batter into pan and top with cinnamon/raw sugar mixture and the rest of the chopped nuts. Bake for roughly an hour or until toothpick comes out (relatively) clean. Cool on wire rack for 15 minutes and enjoy. 8 servings.

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We ate this as a main dish, but it would also make a great side. I love vegetables where you can scoop up some meaty flesh with each biteful. There’s something very basic and satisfying about it. Great stuffing, too.

Stuffed acorn squash (adapted from The Tasty Kitchen blog)

1 whole acorn squash, cut in half lengthwise

2 teaspoons brown sugar

2 teaspoons margarine

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

1/2 cup celery, diced

1/2 yellow onion, diced

1 tart apple, peeled, cored, and diced

1/2 teaspoon dried thyme

1/2 teaspoon curry powder

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

2 whole cornbread muffins, cubed into bite-sized pieces

1/4 cup dried cranberries

1/2 cup chicken broth

salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

sprinkle of soy parmesan

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Scrape seeds and stringy flesh from the squash. Place squash in a baking dish, cut sides upp. Pour about an inch of water in the bottom of the dish. Put one teaspoon margarine and one teaspoon brown sugar in each half. Place in the oven for 15 minutes. Baste squash with the butter and brown sugar mixture after the 15 minute mark to prevent drying. Put back in oven for another 30 – 45 minutes, or until fork tender.

Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a skillet and add the celery, onion, apples, thyme, curry, and cinnamon. Cook until softened. Remove skillet from heat and set aside.

Place cubed cornbread on a baking sheet and bake for about 10 minutes (next to the squash), or until golden and crunchy.

Add the cranberries and the toasted cornbread to the skillet mixture and gently stir to combine. While stirring, slowly add the chicken broth. Season with salt and pepper. Fill the fork-tender squash with cornbread stuffing, and place back into the oven until heat through, about 10 minutes. Serves 2. Easily doubled.

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Ezra Pound Cake blog posted an intriguing-looking recipe that was adapted from Whole Living magazine. I played around with it a little and created an adaptation of an adaptation. This tasted so good, and, using simple ingredients, was so easy to make. I added some balsamic grilled chicken from Trader Joe’s, and we really liked the results. Soy parmesan was subbed for the real stuff. Just a great little recipe, and a yummy dinner.

Apple, leek, and butternut squash gratin (with balsamic chicken added)

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 medium leeks, white part only, trimmed, thinly sliced crosswise

coarse salt and freshly ground pepper

1/2 cup dry sherry or apple cider (I used the sherry)

1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage, plus leaves for garnish

1 pound butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and sliced 1/8″ thick

1 pound grilled chicken (I used balsamic grilled, from Trader Joe’s), cut into thin strips

1 pound apples, peeled, halved, cored, and cut into 1/8″ thick slices

1/2 cup grated soy parmesan

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In 10″ skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of oil over medium heat. Add leeks and 2 tablespoons water; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until they begin to brown, about 10 minutes. Add sherry and sage, and cook until liquid is reduced to a glaze, about 3 minutes; set aside.

In a 2-quart shallow baking dish, arrange squash in overlapping layers; season with salt and pepper. Spread leeks evenly over the squash. Arrange the chicken over the leeks. Arrange the apples in an overlapping layer over the chicken. Brush apples with the remaining tablespoon oil. Cover tightly with foil, and bake for 45 minutes.

Uncover and sprinkle the parmesan cheese over the top. Raise the oven temperature to 450 degrees and bake 10 minutes, or until the cheese has melted and is golden brown. Let cool 10 minutes before serving. Makes 4 servings.

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I have vivid memories of my grandmother making apple streudel – and going through the various steps of filling preparation, dough preparation, assembly, and then the heavenly smells that filled the kitchen and then the entire house. Nothing in this world was better than that.

But this streudel comes pretty close. The filling is tender and bursting with goodness, and the simplicity of the crust makes up for its lack of lengthy preparation. It’s frozen puff pastry, after all. A quick, easy, and warmly satisfying treat.

Apple streudel (with nondairy adaptation by me, from Land O’Lakes)

2 medium apples, peeled, cored, diced

1/3 cup raisins

1/4 cup margarine, melted

1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1/4 cup chopped pecans

1/8 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons sugar

1 sheet (from 17.3 ounce package) frozen nondairy puff pastry, thawed as directed on package

1 egg, beaten

Heat oven to 400 degrees F. Combine apples, raisins, 3 tablespoons margarine, brown sugar, and 1 teaspoon cinnamon in an 8″ nonstick skillet. Cook over medium heat until apples are tender (5 – 6 minutes). Stir in pecans and salt. Let stand until cool (15 minutes).

Meanwhile, combine 2 teaspoons sugar and remaining 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon in small bowl; set aside.

Unfold pastry on lightly floured surface; roll to 12 x 18″ rectangle. Cut into six 6″ squares. Turn squares so points are at top, bottom, and sides.

Divide apple filling evenly over center of squares. For each streudel, brush top pastry corner with beaten egg. Fold side points of pastry over filling. Starting at bottom point, roll up to enclose filling. Seal top edge; place seam-side down onto large ungreased baking sheet. Brush with remaining 1 tablespoon melted margarine; sprinkle with cinnamon-sugar mixture. Cut 2 diagonal slashes on top of each roll.

Bake for 18 – 22 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from baking sheet.

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