I used to make bread every week for my roommate who didn’t think a meal was complete without bread. I haven’t been making bread lately, but I have been making pizza dough and Calzone. Now that I have a working Kitchen Aid Classic stand mixer, I can make as much bread as I like.
I don’t usually do things that are complicated, and when I started making this bread, I thought it would be complicated, but, in truth, it wasn’t. If this is your first time making bread, you might be intimidated by this, but trust me, it’s going to be okay.
I found this recipe on the back of the Zulka brown sugar bag. The cake looked great on the package, I happened to have apples in the refrigerator, and I wanted to try something new.
The instructions on how to make the cake on the bag make no sense, therefore, I changed it to the traditional method of creaming the butter and then creaming the butter and sugar together. Okay, so you don’t know what creaming is? It’s very simple. Put room temperature butter into a large bowl, and then beat it with an electric beater until it is nice and smooth. If you don’t have room temperature butter, you can cut the butter up into small pieces and then cream it. The best way to beat is with a stand mixer, but a hand mixer will do just fine. Don’t try this with a whisk, it’s too difficult.
This is a very moist cake, and may take quite a while to bake. The original instructions said 40-55 minutes, mine was in over 80 minutes, your mileage may vary.
It’s the middle of July here in Glendale, California, and it was 88 degrees in my house. My house is pretty cool because I face north, and there is a nice awning over the windows, so it doesn’t get that hot inside. Our kitchen has the stove tucked in a corner, with no ventilation except the regular fan. The heat does not dissipate, and once the oven is turned on, it stays hot in there for hours. That’s great in the winter, but not when it’s 92 outside. What do you do when you want to have cake and it’s just to darned hot? You use the microwave.
This was my first time baking in the microwave, too, but armed with toothpicks, I was able to tell right away when the cake was finished. The texture is not quite the same as a regular cake, it is very dense, but actually quite good.
Mayonnaise is your Friend
I know you think that sounds yucky to put mayonnaise in a cake, but it truly keeps it nice and moist, after all, when you look up the ingredients in your head, you will see that it is mostly eggs and oil, both of which make cakes moist. Egg whites also bring airiness to the table. So, it’s a good thing.
This is my first mayonnaise cake. I looked around for recipes, and they all had chocolate, but I wanted coffee cake, and the landlord gave me apples from his tree, so chocolate was out. I followed standard recipes, omitting the chocolate, and it turned out just fine.
So, this morning, Spane was hungry, and breakfast food was in short supply. Usually, I have everything I need to make pancakes, but this time, I had left over apples from making Apple Stuffed Wontons, and I knew they would be really good in pancakes. The problem was they were a little large, and Spane didn’t want to wait. So I made two giant pancakes, one for him, and one for me. They were delicious!
I have always been crêpe challenged. Flipping a giant pancake just seemed impossible to me, so I have stuck with the dollar size variety. But, armed with the right kind of pan, a forgiving batter, and the willingness to try, I was actually able to make a pretty good-looking, although thick, crêpe.
I have a wonderful neighbor who has apple trees, and he has been giving me a lot of apples. After having made Franks with Apples, I was at a loss at what to do with those apples. He has given me a lot. I thought of making Apple Brown Betty, but it has been so hot lately the idea of having my oven on for an hour was just abhorrent. Applesauce could have been an idea, but I wanted something unique and thought-provoking. Whilst looking at some of my other recipes, I got inspiration from my Apple Cranberry Raisin Puff Pastries. Then I remembered that I had purchased some wonton skins on sale at the market, and I decided to stuff those with the apples.
I have never liked pie with ice cream, but pairing the apple stuffed wontons with spicy ice cream sounded like a plan. I like to buy vanilla ice cream, and then add my stuff to it. Yes, someday I will get an ice cream attachment for my Kitchenaid, but not today.
Don’t you just love moving into a new house, and going to the store trying to figure out what to have for dinner? Yes, I am being facetious, but that is what I was facing tonight – a new house with a lot of stuff still in storage, a limited budget, a hungry child, and tired from working all day. At first I suggested burgers, but the child wanted hot dogs.
Our new house comes with a neighbor who has apple trees with plenty of fruit that he gladly shares. No GMO’s here, thank you! I thought that they would be wonderful sautéed with the big beef Kosher franks I had bought at the store.
Spane was a little surprised when he found out what was on the franks, but really liked it. Try it, it’s easy, and good for you!