apples

Bready or Not: Molasses Toffee Apple Upside-Down Cake

Posted by on May 12, 2021 in apples, Blog, Bready or Not, cake | Comments Off on Bready or Not: Molasses Toffee Apple Upside-Down Cake

This Molasses Toffee Apple Upside-Down Cake is as delicious as it is beautiful!

Bready or Not: Molasses Toffee Apple Upside-Down Cake

This cake does take a little extra effort. You have to give some thought to placing the apple slices instead of just mixing in the apples. It also dirties a lot of dishes.

Bready or Not: Molasses Toffee Apple Upside-Down Cake

But the end result? The cake crumb is reminiscent of a dense, moist gingerbread cake–which goes perfectly with the apples. The combo is sheer bliss.

Bready or Not: Molasses Toffee Apple Upside-Down Cake

So, what kind of apples are best? Three medium baking apples! You can always Google that subject for a wide range of recommendations. I can recommend Granny Smiths, Galas, and Pink Lady.

Bready or Not: Molasses Toffee Apple Upside-Down Cake

The resulting cake is great warm, recently from the oven. It’s also good cold from the fridge. And reheated, warmed just a touch in the microwave or toaster oven. But not reheated to be super-hot–that actually makes the apples go too soft.

Bready or Not: Molasses Toffee Apple Upside-Down Cake

This cake is also great to slice into blocks, wrap in plastic, and freeze for later. It keeps wonderfully that way! Thaw and enjoy at your leisure.

Modified from Bake from Scratch September/October 2019.

Bready or Not: Molasses Toffee Apple Upside Down Cake

This beautiful apple cake takes some extra labor to arrange, but wow is the presentation pretty--and the cake is delicious, too! The dense crumb tastes like gingerbread and is a perfect complement to the slices apples. Modified from Bake from Scratch September/October 2019.
Course: Breakfast, Dessert, Snack
Keyword: apple, cake, gingerbread
Author: Beth Cato

Equipment

  • 9x9 square pan
  • offset spatula

Ingredients

  • 1 2/3 cups light brown sugar packed, divided
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter half stick, melted
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 Tablespoons molasses divided
  • 3 large baking apples about 450 grams after being peeled, cored, and thinly sliced; Granny Smith, Gala, and Pink Lady work well
  • 1/2 cup plus 1 Tablespoon unsalted butter softened
  • 2 large eggs room temperature
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 3/4 cup whole milk

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350-degrees. Cut a square of parchment paper to fit in the bottom of a 9x9 square pan. Grease pan with butter or nonstick spray. Place parchment, and grease paper as well. Set aside.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together 2/3 cup brown sugar, melted butter, and 2 tablespoons molasses. Pour into prepared pan. Arrange apple slices in groups of 5 in alternating patterns on top of sugar mixture.
  • In a big mixing bowl, beat softened butter and remaining 1 cup brown sugar until fluffy. This will be about 3 to 4 minutes in a stand mixer. Scrape sides of bowl as needed.
  • Beat in remaining 1/2 cup molasses until no streaks remain. One at a time, add the eggs and egg yolk followed by the vanilla.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients: the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, ginger, nutmeg, and cloves.
  • Gradually mix the dry ingredients into butter mixture alternately with the milk. Beat until just smooth. Pour batter over apples, smoothing with an offset spatula.
  • Bake until the middle passes the toothpick test, about 45 to 50 minutes. Let cool in pan for 10 minutes. Run a knife around edges of pan to release sides of cake, if needed. Carefully invert onto a flat serving plate or small cutting board.
  • The cake is fantastic eaten fresh, cold, or just warmed. It can also be cut into squares and frozen for later enjoyment.

OM NOM NOM!

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    Bready or Not: Apple Slice Tray Bake

    Posted by on Mar 24, 2021 in apples, Blog, blondies, Bready or Not, breakfast, cake | Comments Off on Bready or Not: Apple Slice Tray Bake

    This Apple Slice Tray Bake would simply be an Apple Cake to most Americans. Whatever you call it, it’s packed with apples and delicious.

    Bready or Not: Apple Slice Tray Bake

    This is third consecutive recipe I’ve modified from the Bake from Scratch Magazine July/August 2020 Ireland-themed issue. I still have a few more things I want to try in the coming months, too!

    Bready or Not: Apple Slice Tray Bake

    I’ve found that French, Irish, and British apple cake recipes tend to be lighter on sugar and spices than typical American recipes. The focus is really on the apples.

    Bready or Not: Apple Slice Tray Bake

    I used Honeycrisps here, which are one of my favorite apples to eat outright or bake with! Two big apples will work.

    Bready or Not: Apple Slice Tray Bake

    This bakes up light, lofty, and cakey, with a sugar-crusted top and a lovely flavor of apples throughout. The pieces freeze and thaw very well, too, meaning you can enjoy this like it is fresh but spread over days or weeks!

    Bready or Not: Apple Slice Tray Bake

    This Irish-style apple cake is lighter on spices and sugar than American versions, letting the natural, pure sweetness of apples shine through. (Note that the all-purpose flour, salt, and baking powder could be replaced by 3 1/3 cup self-rising flour.) Modified from Bake from Scratch Magazine July/August 2020 Ireland-themed issue.
    Course: Breakfast, Dessert
    Cuisine: irish
    Keyword: apple, bars, cake
    Author: Beth Cato

    Equipment

    • 9×9 baking pan
    • uneven spatula

    Ingredients

    Apple layer:

    • 2 large baking apples Honeycrisp work well
    • 1 Tablespoon lemon juice
    • 1 Tablespoon white sugar

    Cake:

    • 1 1/4 cups unsalted butter (2 and a half sticks) room temperature
    • 1 1/2 cups white sugar
    • 4 large eggs room temperature
    • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste or substitute vanilla extract
    • 3 cups all-purpose flour
    • 3/4 teaspoon salt
    • 4 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
    • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
    • 1/8 teaspoon allspice
    • 2 Tablespoons turbinado sugar

    Instructions

    • Preheat oven at 350-degrees. Line a 9×9 pan with foil and apply nonstick spray.
    • Peel and core the apples, then slice to about 1/4-inch thickness. Place slices in a large bowl and toss them with lemon juice and 1 Tablespoon white sugar, until apples are coated. Set aside.
    • In a big mixing bowl, beat butter and white sugar for several minutes, until blended and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing in well and scraping bowl afterward. Add vanilla. The batter may look curdled, but that’s okay.
    • In a separate bowl, stir together flour, salt, baking powder, cinnamon, and allspice. Gradually mix the dry ingredients into the wet.
    • Spread about half of the batter into the pan, using an uneven spatula to form an even layer. Arrange apple slices, flat side down, to cover the batter entirely. Top with the remaining batter, using the uneven spatula again to even out as much as possible. Sprinkle turbinado sugar all over the top.
    • Bake until the middle of the cake passes the toothpick test, which will be from 1 hour to 1 hour and 15 minutes. Cover pan with foil about halfway through to prevent it from browning too much.
    • Let cool in pan for an least 10 minutes, then use foil to lift cake onto a cutting board. Slice into squares. Tastes best warmed and at room temperature. Pieces can also be shrouded in plastic wrap and frozen for later enjoyment.

    OM NOM NOM!

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      Bready or Not Original: Apple Calvados Galette

      Posted by on Nov 4, 2020 in alcohol, apples, Blog, boozy, Bready or Not, breakfast, French, pie | Comments Off on Bready or Not Original: Apple Calvados Galette

      This Apple Calvados Galette is a perfect dessert for one or two people. Plus, it’s rustic and pretty to behold!

      Bready or Not Original: Apple Calvados Galette

      Calvados is an apple brandy made in Normandy. The price point of it can vary quite a bit. Feel free to use another kind of apple brandy in the recipe.

      Bready or Not Original: Apple Calvados Galette

      The delicious, original aspect of this treat is that you use the calvados to make a quick stovetop jelly that you then coat the apples with at the end of the bake time.

      Bready or Not Original: Apple Calvados Galette

      The alcohol flavor doesn’t linger. What you get is a concentrated sweet flavor of apples, right atop the fresh apples.

      or Not Original: Apple Calvados Galette

      The baked galette keeps for days wrapped up in foil in the fridge. A quarter slice is the perfect amount for breakfast or dessert, and it’s not anywhere near as bready and dense as a full piece of pie.

      Bready or Not Original: Apple Calvados Galette

      This Apple Calvados Galette evokes the yummy goodness of apple pie, but in a more rustic, simple form. This is the perfect dessert for one or two people! If French calvados isn’t available, use another apple brandy.
      Course: Breakfast, Dessert, Snack
      Cuisine: French
      Keyword: alcohol, apple, pie
      Author: Beth Cato

      Equipment

      • baking sheet
      • parchment paper
      • basting brush

      Ingredients

      Galette

      • 1 single-layer pie dough store-bought or homemade
      • 4 medium apples such as Gala, Fuji, and Ambrosia
      • 1 Tablespoon lemon juice
      • 1/3 cup calvados or other apple brandy
      • 1 Tablespoon cornstarch
      • 3 Tablespoons brown sugar packed
      • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

      Glaze

      • 1 Tablespoon pure maple syrup
      • 1 Tablespoon maple sugar or turbinado sugar

      Instructions

      • Preheat oven at 400-degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
      • On a lightly floured surface, roll out the pie crust to about a 10-inch diameter circle. Transfer it to the baking sheet and set in fridge while the other ingredients are prepared.
      • Peel, core, and thinly slice the apples, placing them in a large bowl. Pour in the lemon juice, calvados, cornstarch, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Toss the apples to coat them completely.
      • Pull out the chilled crust. Begin to arrange apple slices in the middle, fanning them out and stacking them, but leaving a 2-inch border of dough around the outside. DO NOT DISCARD THE LIQUID IN THE BOWL! Once the apples are arranged, fold the dough over to partially cover the apples.
      • Start baking the galette for 15 minutes. While that is cooking, pour the leftover liquid into a small pot on medium-high. Stay close to the stove and stir liquid often. As soon as it gels, which is right at right about boiling temperature, remove it from heat. Set aside.
      • Reduce oven temperature to 350-degrees. Bake galette for another 20 minutes.
      • Pull out the galette. Drizzle the gel over the exposed apples in the middle of the galette then use basting brush to coat every nook and cranny. Measure out maple syrup. Use same brush (no need to wash it) to coat the top crust, then sprinkle maple sugar or coarse sugar over it to add a crystalline crunch.
      • Bake for another 10 to 15 minutes, until apples in middle are fork-tender.
      • Let cool slightly before cutting–a pizza cutter is ideal. Leftovers can be kept wrapped up in foil in the fridge for days.

      *OM NOM NOM!*

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        Bready or Not Original: Pumpkin Spice Espresso Cookies

        Posted by on Oct 14, 2020 in apples, Blog, Bready or Not, cookies, pumpkin | Comments Off on Bready or Not Original: Pumpkin Spice Espresso Cookies

        These Pumpkin Spice Espresso Cookies look a perfect autumnal orange and taste like fall, too–with an added kick of espresso.

        Bready or Not Original: Pumpkin Spice Espresso Cookies

        I love pumpkin recipes that use a whole can of puree. No messing with leftovers, y’know? This recipe will use a full 15-ounce can!

        Bready or Not Original: Pumpkin Spice Espresso Cookies

        The pumpkin flavor comes through in the baked cookies, too, along with warm spices and coffee.

        Expect a texture that is light and cakey in the mouth, and slightly tacky to the fingertips. That’s pretty common with pumpkin cookies–or ones with applesauce, and this recipe includes both.

        Bready or Not Original: Pumpkin Spice Espresso Cookies

        I stored these cookies in the fridge because I live in Arizona and my kitchen is warm through fall, but these should keep fine at room temperature elsewhere.

        Bready or Not Original: Pumpkin Spice Espresso Cookies

        The recipe does make about 50 cookies, but as light and delicious as they are, they might not last that long at all.

        Bready or Not Original: Pumpkin Spice Espresso Cookies

        These pumpkin-packed cookies are soft and chewy, with a lovely crust of coarse sugar on top. Makes about 50 tablespoon-sized cookies.
        Course: Dessert, Snack
        Cuisine: American
        Keyword: cookies, pumpkin
        Servings: 50 cookies
        Author: Beth Cato

        Equipment

        • tablespoon cookie scoop
        • parchment paper
        • waxed paper

        Ingredients

        • 3 cups all-purpose flour
        • 1 teaspoon baking powder
        • 1 teaspoon baking soda
        • 1 teaspoon salt
        • 2 large eggs room temperature
        • 15 ounces pure pumpkin puree
        • 2 cups light brown sugar packed
        • 1/4 cup unsalted butter (4 Tablespoons) room temperature
        • 1/2 cup applesauce
        • 2 Tablespoons half & half or milk
        • 1 Tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
        • 2 teaspoons espresso powder
        • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
        • turbinado sugar for top

        Instructions

        • Preheat oven at 375-degrees. Line large cookie sheets with parchment paper.
        • In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
        • In a large mixing bowl, beat together the eggs, pumpkin, brown sugar, butter, and applesauce. Add the half & half, pumpkin pie spice, espresso powder, and vanilla, until well combined. Gradually mix in the dry ingredients.
        • Use a tablespoon scoop to dollop dough onto the parchment paper, spacing out to allow for slight spread. Sprinkle turbinado sugar over the tops.
        • Bake for 9 to 11 minutes, until the tops are dry and set. Move to a rack to completely cool.
        • Cookies will be slightly tacky, as many pumpkin cookies are, and should be stored with waxed paper between the layers to prevent them from sticking together. Store in a sealed container at room temperature or in the fridge.

        OM NOM NOM

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          Bready or Not Original: Chewy Filled Bars

          Posted by on Aug 12, 2020 in apples, Blog, blondies, Bready or Not, cookies, pumpkin | Comments Off on Bready or Not Original: Chewy Filled Bars

          I present to you my Chewy Filled Bars: a versatile recipe that can use any number of fruit preserves, fruit butters, or other sweet filling, combined with different nuts or seeds, all to unique, delicious result.

          Bready or Not Original: Chewy Filled Bars

          These pictures display the recipe using Sprouts Cherry Preserves (with slivered almonds and almond extract) and Sprouts Maple Pumpkin Butter (with pepitas and almond extract).

          Bready or Not Original: Chewy Filled Bars

          However, I also made the same recipe using Trader Joe’s cinnamon bun filling (with chopped pecans and vanilla extract) and Apple Cider Spread (with chopped walnuts and vanilla extract). Every single version was awesome.

          Bready or Not Original: Chewy Filled Bars

          The jarred filling I used varied from 12 to 14 ounces. All worked well, though the Cinnamon Bun Filling required a 40 minute bake to set. I liked mixing in different nuts or seeds to pair with the filling, but you could also omit that ingredient completely, if desired.

          Bready or Not Original: Chewy Filled Bars

          No matter the mix-ins, the result is a pleasantly thick, chewy bar that is just sweet enough.

          Bready or Not Original: Chewy Filled Bars

           

          Bready or Not Original: Chewy Filled Bars

          This versatile base recipe can accommodate many different fillings, all of them delicious. Pick a jar of fruit preserves, fruit butter, or other sweet filling. Pick a complementary nut or seed. Pick an extract. Mix up. Enjoy!
          Course: Appetizer, Snack
          Keyword: almond, bars, oats, preserves, pumpkin, walnuts
          Author: Beth Cato

          Equipment

          • 13x9 pan

          Ingredients

          • 1 cup unsalted butter room temperature
          • 2 cups brown sugar packed
          • 2 teaspoons baking powder
          • 1 large egg
          • 1 teaspoon almond extract or substitute vanilla extract
          • 2 cups all-purpose flour
          • 2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
          • 1/2 cup slivered almonds or sliced almonds or substitute other nuts or seeds
          • 12 to 14 ounce fruit preserves or fruit butter or other sweet filling; possibilities include cherry preserves, pumpkin butter, cinnamon bun filling, etc

          Instructions

          • Preheat oven at 350-degrees. Line a 13x9 pan with aluminum foil and apply nonstick spray or butter.
          • In a large bowl, beat butter until creamy. Add brown sugar and baking powder. Follow up with egg and almond extract. Gradually mix in flour, oats, and sliced almonds.
          • Set aside 1 cup of dough. Press the rest into the bottom of the prepared pan. A piece of waxed paper and heavy glass will help to compress it into a form, even layer. Spread preserves over top. Crumble the reserved dough over the fruit.
          • Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until top is lightly brown and no longer wobbly in the middle. Completely cool at room temperature, speeding process in the fridge, if desired. Use foil to lift contents onto cutting board to slice up.
          • Store in sealed containers with waxed paper or parchment between the layers. Keeps at room temperature for days, and can also be frozen for weeks.

          OM NOM NOM!

            Bready or Not Original: Chewy Filled Bars

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            Bready or Not: Harvest Apple Challah

            Posted by on Aug 5, 2020 in apples, Blog, Bready or Not, breakfast, yeast bread | Comments Off on Bready or Not: Harvest Apple Challah

            Welcome autumn with this big beautiful Harvest Apple Challah, packed with fruit and spice.

            Bready or Not: Harvest Apple Challah

            This recipe might look intimidating, but let me assure you, it’s not. The cutting stage is supposed to be messy.

            Bready or Not: Harvest Apple Challah

            Take comfort that this is not a loaf that is supposed to look tidy. The end goal is rustic–and delicious.

            Bready or Not: Harvest Apple Challah

            Challah is an enriched dough. Eggs and honey add extra richness plus soft texture.

            Bready or Not: Harvest Apple Challah

            The final result is best served warm with an additional dollop or drizzle of honey. Use the good stuff here! I found that using the toaster oven for 5 to 7 minutes was about perfect for thick slices of bread.

            Bready or Not: Harvest Apple Challah

            I also found that this bread was great to freeze in slices. Pull out frozen pieces to thaw overnight, and breakfast is quick, convenient, and delicious the next morning!

            Bready or Not: Harvest Apple Challah

            Modified from a recipe at King Arthur Flour.

            Bready or Not: Harvest Apple Challah

            Bready or Not: Harvest Apple Challah

            This big round of rustic-looking sweet bread is laden with apple chunks and beautiful to behold--and eat! This kind of bread is traditionally served at Rosh Hashanah along with some honey, but it's so good, it's worth baking all year long. Modified from a King Arthur Flour recipe.
            Course: Bread, Breakfast, Snack
            Keyword: apple, yeast bread
            Author: Beth Cato

            Equipment

            • deep 9-inch round cake pan or casserole dish
            • bench knife
            • kitchen thermometer

            Ingredients

            Dough

            • 1/2 cup lukewarm water
            • 6 Tablespoons vegetable oil
            • 1/4 cup honey
            • 2 large eggs room temperature
            • 4 cups all-purpose flour
            • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
            • 1 Tablespoon instant yeast or active yeast

            Filling

            • 2 medium apples
            • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
            • 1/4 cup white sugar

            Topping

            • 1 large egg
            • coarse sugar optional
            • honey for serving optional

            Instructions

            Make the dough

            • Mix together the dough ingredients by hand or using a mixer with dough hook, until well-incorporated and not stiff. Place dough in a greased bowl to let rise about 2 hours, or until puffy; if poked with a finger, the dent in the dough should remain and not bounce back.
            • Prepare a deep round cake pan or casserole dish (at least 4 inches) by greasing thoroughly.
            • Also lightly grease a large stretch of counter top or table. Gently deflate dough and transfer to the surface, and flatten dough to an 8x10-inch rectangle.

            Prepare the filling

            • Core the apples but leave on the peels. Chop apples into chunks about 1/2 to 3/4-inch in size. Should equal about 3 cups total. Toss pieces in cinnamon and sugar.

            Assemble the bread

            • Spread half the apples in the center of the dough. Fold one short edge over the apples to cover them, and press down the edge to seal them inside.
            • Place the remaining apples on top of the existing apple-dough mound. Cover these apples with the other flap of dough, patting again to seal. It's okay if it is bulging and messy!
            • Use a bench knife or paring knife to cut the dough down the middle, long-ways. Then cut again along the long side, edge to edge, to create a series of broad, messy stacks of dough with apples overflowing onto the surface.
            • Start transferring pieces of dough and scattered apples into the prepared pan, forming a bottom layer, then keep stacking more dough and fruit on top until everything is in the pan.
            • Cover loosely with plastic wrap, and let rise for another hour, until it is puffed again.
            • Preheat oven at 325-degrees, with a rack in the lower third of the oven.
            • Uncover the dough. Brush the top with an egg beaten with a tablespoon of water. If desired, sprinkle coarse sugar all over the top.
            • Bake for 55 to 65 minutes, until the top is deep brown. As the dough is so thick, if a kitchen thermometer is available, use it to test the middle; bread should be at least 190-degrees.
            • Set pan of bread on a rack to cool for 10 minutes. Carefully remove bread from pan.
            • Serve challah warm, ideally with extra honey drizzled on top. Store covered at room temperature up to 4 days. Bread can also be sliced and frozen.

            OM NOM NOM!

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