This week's TWD was chosen by Vibi of La Casserole Carree: Thanksgiving Twofer Pie! This pie is a combination of pumpkin pie and pecan pie and was a perfect treat for Thanksgiving this week. I've never made either pumpkin pie or pecan pie so I was excited to give this one a try.
This pie could not be easier to make. The pumpkin filling is made in a food processor and the pecan filling can be made in one bowl without a mixer. Like I said, simple. The only problem I ran into with this pie was my inability to follow directions. After I'd already filled the crust and started baking the pie, I looked at the recipe again and saw that I was supposed to pre-bake the crust. Ooops. I was worried but figured I would just see what happened. Luckily, it didn't really seem to make a difference. In fact, I read that some of the other TWD bakers had problems with their crust browning too much so I was glad I hadn't pre-baked. One other note: my pie took about 10 minutes longer than Dorie's recipe indicated.
I brought this pie to a Thanksgiving get together and everyone really seemed to like it! I had a small piece and definitely liked the filling though the pecans ruined it for me. This pie confirmed that I'm not a fan of pecans unless they're ground up or chopped into tiny pieces. Overall, it was a success though and I'm sure I'll make it again for the holidays!
Many thanks to Vibi for selecting such a great recipe for Thanksgiving week! The recipe for the pie can be found on her blog. Be sure to head over to TWD to see how the other pies turned out this week.
Hope everyone had a nice Thanksgiving yesterday! Ours was really nice and included WAY too much delicious food! We have another Thanksgiving get together this afternoon and I am bringing a few desserts, including this cranberry bread. I've been on a bit of a cranberry kick lately and when my latest issue of Everyday Food arrived, I saw this bread inside and immediately wanted to make it. I was a bit hesitant because I've had some problems with release of breads from my loaf pans. Fortunately, earlier this week I made a trip to the Williams Sonoma outlet and picked up a new loaf pan, which ended up working perfectly. This bread is delicious - very moist and lots of cranberries studded throughout!
from Everyday Food Magazine
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, plus more for pan
2 cups all purpose flour, plus more for pan
1 cup packed light-brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 large egg, lightly beaten
3/4 cup whole milk
1 bag (12 oz) cranberries
1 tablespoon turbinado sugar, for topping (optional)
Preheat oven to 350 F. Butter and flour a 9-by-5 inch loaf pan and set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together flour, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt; set aside. In a medium bowl, combine butter, egg and milk. Add wet mixture to dry mixture, and whisk to combine; fold in cranberries.
Pour batter into prepared pan; sprinkle top with turbinado sugar, if desired. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center of loaf comes out clean, about 1 hour and 15 minutes. Transfer pan to a wire rack; let bread cool 30 minutes. Invert onto rack, then immediately turn right side up to let cool completely.
I've been baking a lot lately but I haven't made much that Shane likes. On top of that, most of the desserts I'm planning to make for Thanksgiving are not Shane-friendly. So, with that in mind I wanted to make something tasty for him last night. I didn't want to make cookies or cake though because I didn't want to have huge quantities of baked goods sitting around. These muffins were the perfect solution because I only made a half batch and six muffins is a completely manageable number. This recipe is easy (no mixer required) and the muffins baked up beautifully (though mine did take longer than 20 minutes). They smelled amazing and they taste just as good! The peanut butter flavor isn't overwhelming so I think these make for a very delicious breakfast!
Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Muffins
from Annie's Eats
2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. salt
2/3 cup brown sugar
6 tbsp. butter, melted and cooled
½ cup peanut butter
2 large eggs
1 cup milk
¾ cup chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 375 F. Line a muffin pan with 12 paper liners.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt and brown sugar. Set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together the melted butter, peanut butter, eggs and milk until smooth. Add in the flour mixture and stir until just combined. Stir in chocolate chips. Divide batter evenly between prepared muffin tins, filling each to the top.
Bake for 17-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool for 5 minutes in the pan, then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.
I've been wanting to make lasagna forever but something held me back. Most lasagna recipes make a TON of food, more than I could ever eat by myself before it went bad. Shane kept telling me he didn't really like lasagna and I didn't want to invest the time and money in making the lasagna only to have it go to waste. A few weeks ago, however, we had this lasagna for a quick, last minute dinner and Shane really liked it. That was all I needed to give me the green light to finally make lasagna.
I looked at many recipes but I'd seen so many raves for Pioneer Woman's lasagna that I decided to give it a shot. I won't lie. It took me a while to make this lasagna. I made it on Friday night when Shane was out with friends and then stuck it in the fridge for the weekend. I baked it on Sunday afternoon and we've been eating it all week! Fortunately, Shane loves it so I think we'll finish it before I need to throw any out. I like it a lot too though it's maybe a tad greasy for me. Next time I make it I'll probably sub ground turkey for the ground beef.
from Pioneer Woman Cooks
1 1/2 lbs ground beef
1 pound hot breakfast sausage
2 cloves minced garlic
two 14.5 oz cans whole peeled tomatoes
two 6 oz cans tomato paste
2 tablespoons dried parsley
2 tablespoons dried basil
one 10 oz package lasagna noodles
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 cups lowfat cottage cheese
2 beaten eggs
1/2 cup Kraft parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons dried parsley
1 pound sliced mozzarella cheese (shredded works too!)
In a skillet, combine ground beef, sausage and 2 cloves minced garlic. Cook until brown and then drain off half the fat. Pour in cans of tomatoes and tomato paste and add parsley, basil and 1 teaspoon of salt. Mix together thoroughly and simmer, uncovered, about 45 minutes, stirring occasionally.
In the meantime, boil the lasagna noodles. Add 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1 tablespoon olive oil to water. Cook the noodles al dente. When noodles are finished, drain, rinse with cool water, and lay them flat on a sheet of aluminum foil.
While meat and noodles are cooking, combine cottage cheese with the eggs in a bowl. Add the Kraft parmesan cheese, 2 tablespoons dried parsley and 1 teaspoon salt.
Set up your assembly line: meat mixture, mozzarella cheese, cottage cheese mixture and lasagna noodles. Lay 4 lasagna noodles in the bottom of a 13 x 9 baking dish, overlapping as you go. Spread half of the cottage cheese mixture over the noodles. Next, lay 1/2 pound of the mozzarella cheese and finally add a little less than half of the meat mixture on top of the mozzarella, spreading it evenly to cover the mozzarella.
Repeat the layering process: begin with another layer of 4 lasagna noodles, top with the remaining half of the cottage cheese mixture, add the remaining 1/2 lb of mozzarella cheese and finally finish with the remaining meat mixture. Top the meat mixture with a generous amount of Kraft parmesan cheese.
Place in a 350 F oven for 20-30 minutes, until hot and bubbly. Alternatively, you could cover and freeze the lasagna, unbaked, or cover and refrigerate, unbaked, for up to 2 days.
I threw these muffins together this afternoon so I'd have something different to have for breakfast this week. Well, that and I had carrots sitting in the fridge and wasn't motivated to both make and frost carrot cake or cupcakes. It wound up being a good decision! I didn't have high hopes for these muffins. I figured with only 4 tablespoons of butter in the entire batch, they'd be boring (read healthy). They were, however, really good! I think the pumpkin pie spice really works well with the carrot, making the muffins taste sweeter than I expected. They were really moist and had great texture too. I love when I am pleasantly surprised by a recipe. These will be a delicious breakfast this week!
Spiced Carrot Muffins
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons pumpkin-pie spice
2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cups plain yogurt
4 tablespoons melted unsalted butter (I used buttermilk)
1 large egg
2 cups peeled, shredded carrots (about 5 medium)
Line 12 cups of a standard muffin tin with paper liners; set aside. In a large bowl, stir together flour, sugar, pumpkin-pie spice, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; set aside.
In a separate bowl, whisk together yogurt, butter, and egg. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and add yogurt mixture. Stir until just combined. Fold in carrots.
Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups. If desired, muffins can be baked immediately in a 375-degree oven for about 20 minutes. Alternatively, you can freeze until firm, about 30 minutes, then cover tin with plastic wrap, and freeze until ready to bake, up to 3 months.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Bake muffins (still frozen) until a toothpick inserted in center of one comes out clean, about 30 minutes. Transfer to a rack. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Red velvet cupcakes have been on my to-do list forever. I've never had a red velvet cupcake and I've always been intrigued by them. Finally, the other night I had free time and all the necessary ingredients on hand and made them! These came together very quickly and easily. The color on mine is probably a bit off as I ended up not having quite enough red food coloring but they looked red enough to me. Sadly, I did not taste one of the cupcakes before I gave them away but I did taste both the batter and the frosting separately and liked them a lot. Those who did try the cupcakes (my mom's coworkers) really enjoyed them! People raved about the frosting, which I thought was interesting since it's such a simple, basic recipe for cream cheese frosting. As soon as I get more red food coloring I will be making these again and I'll be sure to have one. I also need to convince Shane to try them as he was quite skeptical of red cupcakes...
Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cocoa powder
1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
1 cup buttermilk, room temperature
2 large eggs, room temperature
2 tablespoons red food coloring
1 teaspoon white distilled vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the Frosting:
1 pound (16 oz) cream cheese, softened
2 sticks butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
Preheat the oven to 350 F. Line 2 (12-cup) muffin pans with cupcake papers.
In a medium mixing bowl, sift together the flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, and cocoa powder. In a large bowl gently beat together the oil, buttermilk, eggs, food coloring, vinegar, and vanilla with a handheld electric mixer. Add the sifted dry ingredients to the wet and mix until smooth and thoroughly combined.
Divide the batter evenly among the cupcake tins about 2/3 filled. Bake in oven for about 20 to 22 minutes, turning the pans once, half way through. Test the cupcakes with a toothpick for doneness. Remove from oven and cool completely before frosting.
For the Frosting: In a large mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese, butter and vanilla together until smooth. Add the sugar and on low speed, beat until incorporated. Increase the speed to high and mix until very light and fluffy. Frost the cupcakes with a butter knife or offset spatula or pipe it on with a big star tip.
Makes 24 cupcakes.
We eat a lot of chicken at our house but one thing we don't do too often is roast an entire chicken. I've always been a little scared of the prospect of roasting an entire bird but with all the tv shows lately talking about roasting turkeys for Thanksgiving, I finally felt I had enough information to give it a shot. It was a messy process to get the bird cleaned and ready but oddly fun. I'm still not entirely sure where I should be testing the bird's temperature to check doneness so I was nervous about overcooking it. Luckily, it turned out incredibly moist and juicy. I'd actually venture to say that this was the most delicious chicken we've ever had. The flavors of the lemon, garlic and herbs in the cavity really infused the meat and the butter under the skin helped to keep it moist. When we ran out grocery shopping earlier we picked up 2 more whole chickens so we can make this again and again!
Lemon and Herb Roasted Chicken
adapted from FoodNetwork.com and Good Things Catered
1 oven roaster chicken (ours was almost 4 lbs)
1 lemon, halved
1 head garlic, halved
1/4 bunch each fresh rosemary and thyme
1 tbsp unsalted butter, softened
salt and pepper
Preheat the oven to 400 F.
Rinse the chicken with cool water, inside and out, then pat it dry with paper towels. Season the cavity with salt and pepper, and then stuff the lemon, garlic, and herbs inside (I could only fit half the lemon in our chicken along with the garlic and herbs). Place the chicken, breast-side up, in a roasting pan. In a small bowl stir the softened butter and salt and pepper to combine. Using your fingers, loosen skin from top of breast and thighs. Take half of butter mixture and rub underneath skin on one breast and thigh of bird, spreading evenly. Take remaining herb mixture and spread underneath skin on other half of bird. Take all remnants of butter mixture (from bowl, hands, and extra amount from under skin) and spread over top of the bird's skin.
Place roasting pan in oven and bake for 1 - 1 1/2 hours (depending on size of chicken). The chicken is done when an instant-read thermometer says 165 degrees F when inserted into the thickest part of the thigh (the legs of the chicken should wiggle easily from the sockets too). Remove the chicken to a platter and let stand for 10 minutes, so the juices settle back into the meat before carving.
I have to confess that this recipe wasn't one that I saw and immediately wanted to make. Instead, I saw it linked as one of Annie's "tried and true" recipes the other day in my Google Reader and began thinking. First I thought about the partial bag of white chocolate chips sitting in my cabinet that really needed to be used. Then I thought about the bag of dried cranberries...well, you get the point. So I figured rather than having to throw these ingredients away a month from now I would take a chance on these cookies. For some reason my cookies spread really thin (I even chilled the dough a bit before sticking them in the oven). I'm not a fan of thin cookies so that was a strike against these. Otherwise, I thought they were pretty good. I don't really enjoy white chocolate chips so I had no problem eating one of these and giving the rest away...my neighbors really seemed to enjoy them too! I probably won't make them again unless someone requests them but that's only because I prefer so many other types of cookies over these (chocolate chip, oatmeal raisin, peanut butter, etc.).
Cranberry White Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies
from Annie's Eats
3 eggs, well beaten
1 cup dried cranberries
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup brown sugar
2 1/2 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 cups oatmeal
1 cup white chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350 F. Combine eggs, dried cranberries and vanilla and let stand for 1 hour, covered with plastic wrap.
Cream together butter and sugars. Add flour, salt, cinnamon and soda to sugar mixture. Mix well. Blend in egg-cranberry mixture and oatmeal. Dough will be stiff. Fold in the white chocolate chips. Drop by heaping teaspoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheet or roll in small balls and flatten slightly on cookie sheet. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until lightly browned.
Yields about 6 dozen cookies.
This week's TWD was chosen by Isabelle of Les gourmandises d’Isa: arborio rice pudding! I'm not much of a pudding person but since I missed last week's recipe, I definitely wanted to participate. Luckily, I didn't have much trouble finding someone willing to take some rice pudding off of my hands :-)
I enjoyed the simplicity of this week's recipe a lot. When I looked up the recipe and saw that it only had a few ingredients I was excited! I did decide to splurge and grab some whole milk for the pudding. Generally, when a recipe calls for whole milk I'll substitute 1% (which is what we usually have around) but I figured with so few ingredients, whole milk was the way to go. I also struggled with deciding whether to make the chocolate or vanilla pudding as Dorie includes both options. Initially I was going to make chocolate but after reading that many of the other TWD bakers found the chocolate pudding too rich, I decided to stick with vanilla. I was also really pleased that I read what the other bakers had to say about this recipe before I set out to make it as there is a typo in Dorie's book and the pudding needed almost double the amount of time indicated in order to absorb the milk! As I transferred the pudding to the ramekins I did sneak a little taste and surprisingly, I didn't hate it! I know that's not a glowing endorsement, but pudding is really not my thing so that's about as strong a recommendation as you'll get from me on a pudding recipe!
Many thanks to Isabelle for her selection this week. If you'd like the recipe for this rice pudding be sure to check out Isabelle's blog here. As always, head over to TWD to see all of the creations by the many, many TWD bakers!
Pasta and cheese....what's not to love?? I've had several recipes for stuffed shells marked to try for a while now and finally decided I wanted to make them this weekend. When I set out to do so, however, I determined I didn't have all of the ingredients to make any of the recipes so I wound up piecing together a recipe that was based on a few that I had bookmarked. If I'd had a jar of tomato sauce on hand I probably would have used that but I didn't so I made the sauce using a recipe I really like from Cooks Illustrated which I've linked to below.
One great thing about this recipe is that it freezes well. I actually haven't even tried these yet. I simply made them up and stuck them in the freezer so I'd have several meals ready to stick in the oven on busier nights. I did want to get them on the blog so I wouldn't forget to post them in case I don't try them for a few weeks. I am pretty sure they're going to be delicious but I'll post an update after I bake them!
adapted from Annie's Eats and Allrecipes.com
1 (12 oz) box jumbo pasta shells
1 (15 oz.) container of ricotta cheese
¾ cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 (10 ounce) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained
1/4 teaspoon dried basil
salt and pepper
2 cups tomato sauce (recipe here)
1 1/2 cups grated mozzarella
Bring a large pot of salted water to boil over high heat. Add the pasta and cook according to package directions.
Squeeze spinach dry. Combine spinach, ricotta, parmesan cheese, basil and eggs in a large mixing bowl. Season with salt and pepper; mix well.
To stuff the shells, cover the bottom of a 9 by 13 by 2-inch baking dish with 1 cup of tomato sauce. Take a shell in the palm of your hand and stuff it with a large spoonful of spinach mixture, about 2 tablespoons. Place the stuffed shell in the baking dish. Continue filling the shells until the baking dish is full, about 24 shells. Drizzle the remaining tomato sauce over the shells, top with the grated mozzarella. If freezing, cover tightly with plastic wrap and place in the freezer for 1 day and up to 1 month.
To bake, preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Bake until the shells are warmed through and the cheese is beginning to brown, about 60 minutes (20 minutes if shells are unfrozen.)
First up are pot stickers I made for dinner one night last week. I'd seen these on an episode of Everyday Food on PBS a while ago and made a mental note to give them a try. For the longest time I wanted to make them but couldn't find the wonton wrappers in our grocery store. I finally found them (after someone mentioned checking the produce area which is the last place I expected to find them) and was ready to give the recipe a shot! I eliminated the scallions from the filling altogether as those are a bit tough to hide and I didn't think I could get Shane to eat them. I also used ground ginger instead of fresh ginger because it's what I had on hand. I had some concerns that the wonton wrappers would be tough to work with, but that just wasn't the case. These were fun to make and quite tasty! We've never had pot stickers before so we don't have any basis for comparison but I know we liked these enough to make them again!
from Everyday Food
For the filling: In a medium bowl, toss cabbage with 1/2 teaspoon salt. Let stand 10 minutes. Wrap cabbage in a double layer of paper towels; firmly squeeze out excess liquid. Return cabbage to bowl; add pork, scallions, ginger, soy sauce, and sesame oil. Mix well with a fork. Refrigerate leftover filling up to 2 days.
For the wontons: Work with one wrapper at a time, and keep the rest covered with a damp towel. Spoon one rounded teaspoon of filling in center. With dampened fingers, wet the four edges. To make a triangle, fold wrapper in half over filling, making sure the ends meet and filling is centered; press edges down firmly to seal.
Moisten one tip on long side of triangle. Then bring together both tips on long side, overlapping them slightly; press tips together to seal.
Fold remaining top corner back. Transfer to an oiled plate; cover with a damp towel to keep moist. Repeat with remaining wrappers and filling.
In a 12-inch nonstick skillet with a tight-fitting lid, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium-high heat. Add half the wontons and cook, turning once, until lightly browned, about 1 minute per side. Carefully add 1/2 cup water (oil may sputter), cover, and steam until translucent and just cooked through, 2 to 3 minutes. Repeat with remaining tablespoon oil and wontons. Sprinkle pot stickers with scallions, if using, and serve with soy sauce.
I don't make many quick breads at our house because it's just the two of us and Shane isn't a huge fan of most of the breads I would enjoy. However, when I saw this recipe for cheesy beer bread, I knew it would be a quick bread that would definitely get eaten at our house! This recipe could not be easier to pull together. It only uses one bowl and I'm pretty sure it took a grand total of 5 minutes to get in the oven. I'm not sure what happened with the cooking time, but my bread was ready in 40-45 minutes, not 55-60. In fact, I didn't check it often enough and I think I probably overcooked it a bit. Still, it was delicious! It's a substantial bread....like Annie says, it's hearty. We ate ours as a side to a few meals this week and I am sure Shane will request it again!
Cheesy Beer Bread
from Annie's Eats
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
4 ½ tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar
12 oz. beer (I used Heineken)
2 tbsp. butter, melted
Preheat oven to 350 F. Lightly grease a 9×5” loaf pan.
In a large bowl, combine flours, brown sugar, baking powder, salt, and garlic powder. Whisk to combine well. Add cheese and whisk to combine. Slowly add beer to dry ingredients and stir lightly until just combined, and all ingredients are completely moistened. Place into the prepared loaf pan and pour melted butter over the top. Place in the oven and bake for 55-60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
This week's TWD was chosen by Grace of Piggy's Cooking Journal: rugelach! I have to confess that I had never even heard of rugelach, much less tried it, before I saw Ina Garten make it on Food Network a few weeks ago. I was definitely intrigued by the concept when I saw her make it, so I was really glad that Grace chose the rugelach this week!
I made a few variations to this week's recipe. I used strawberry preserves as opposed to raspberry or apricot as Dorie suggests because that's what I had on hand. Also, I didn't have currants but found some dried cranberries on sale at Target so I threw those in. I used mini semisweet chocolate chips instead of bittersweet chocolate though I guess that's no surprise as I substitute semisweet for bittersweet most of the time...
I have to say that I really enjoyed making these rugelach! I was worried that working with the dough would be difficult as I struggle with pie dough, especially the process of rolling it out. This dough, however, was much more cooperative! It never got incredibly sticky and I was able to move it around as necessary. I need to work on my geometry skills, though, because when I cut the dough into wedges they were all different sizes!
The true test for these rugelach was the taste. I had no expecations since I've never tried them before. I wasn't sure how all of the flavors would combine but as it turns out, the predominant flavor was chocolate and I have no problem with that! There were definitely hints of the other flavors. In fact, I found myself reaching for a second one just to try to pick out the cranberries, pecans and strawberry preserves. The best part of the rugelach for me was the dough! It was flaky and light and almost reminded me of puff pastry in a way. I could detect the cream cheese but it wasn't overpowering. I know I will definitely make these again and experiment with some other fillings!
Sorry my post is quite late this week. I've been glued to the tv watching the election results pour in. Grace has posted the rugelach recipe on her blog so if you want to make this recipe, head over there! Be sure to check out TWD to see the many variations of rugelach baked this week!
I bought a bag of gala apples at the grocery store weeks ago and didn't realize how many recipes I would need to make to use them up! While I love apple pie and apple crisp (my go-to apple desserts), I wanted to find something new to try. This apple cake sounded delicious and I can't recall ever having apple cake so I gave it a shot. Boy, am I glad I did! It's outstanding! The cake has great apple flavor and is so moist and fluffy. If you have apples hanging around the house and you're looking for a recipe, I highly recommend this one!
from Baking Illustrated, by Editors of Cook's Illustrated Magazine
For the Cake:
16 tablespoons (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into 16 pieces, softened but still cool, plus 2 tablespoons for greasing the pan
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar, plus 6 tablespoons for dusting the pan
2 tablespoons light brown sugar for the pan
3 large eggs plus 2 large egg yolks
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 1/4 cups plain cake flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 large Granny Smith apples (about 1 pound), peeled, cored and cut into 1/2-inch cubes (I used Gala)
2 tablespoons light brown sugar
For the Cake: Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease a standard 12-cup Bundt pan with the 2 tablespoons softened butter; dust the sides with 2 tablespoons of the granulated sugar, then evenly distribute the remaining 4 tablespoons granulated sugar in the bottom of the pan. Evenly sprinkle the brown sugar on top of the granulated sugar, breaking up any large lumps with your fingers.
Whisk the eggs and yolks in a 2-cup liquid measuring cup to combine. Add the cream and vanilla and beat until thoroughly combined.
In the bowl of a standing mixer set at the lowest speed, combine the flour, the 1 1/4 cups sugar, the baking powder and salt, about 30 seconds. With the mixer still running on the lowest speed, add the butter, 1 piece at a time in 1-second intervals and beat until the mixture resembles coarse meal, with butter bits no larger than small peas, 1 to 1 1/2 minutes.
With the mixer still running, add 1/2 cup of the egg mixture; mix at the lowest speed until incorporated, 5 to 10 seconds. Increase the speed to medium-high and beat until light and fluffy, about 1 minute. With the mixer still running , add the remaining liquid in a steady stream (this should take about 30 seconds). Stop the mixer and scrape down the bowl with a rubber spatula, then beat at medium-high speed to combine, about 30 seconds.
For the apples: Toss the cubed apples with the light brown sugar and distribute in an even layer over the sugar in the pan. Add the batter in 4 portions and gently level with an offset spatula or the back of a spoon.
Bake until the cake begins to pull away from the sides of the pan, springs back when pressed with a finger, and a toothpick or skewer inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, 35 to 45 minutes. Meanwhile, place a 12 inch square of foil on a wire rack. Immediately invert the cake onto the foil-covered rack. Cool at least 1 hour, then slide onto a serving plate.
It's been a long time since I've made bread and since it's Sunday and it's fairly chilly outside, I knew warm homemade bread was just what we needed this afternoon! Originally I was going to make wheat bread, but as I was looking for that recipe in my google reader, I came across another recipe I'd starred recently which called to me even more! Since I love rolls, especially when they're slightly sweet, and Shane won't eat wheat bread, these honey yeast rolls were a great choice! This is a really easy yeast recipe and well worth the effort! These rolls were amazing! I will definitely be making them many times this winter!
Honey Yeast Rolls
from Annie's Eats
2 ¼ tsp. instant yeast
1 cup warm water (105°-115° F)
¼ cup honey
3 tbsp. canola oil
1 ¼ tsp. salt
1 egg, lightly beaten
4 cups bread flour
vegetable cooking spray
1 tbsp. butter, melted
1 tbsp honey
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the yeast and warm water. Add the honey, oil, salt, and egg and mix well. Add 3 cups of the flour and mix until the dough comes together in a sticky mass. With the mixer on low speed, add the remaining 1 cup flour and mix until it is incorporated into the dough. Switch to the dough hook, and continue kneading on low speed until the dough is smooth and elastic, about 8 minutes.
Form the dough into a ball and transfer to a lightly oiled bowl, turning once to coat. Cover the bowl with a damp kitchen towel and let the dough rise in a warm, draft-free spot until it doubles in bulk, about 2 hours.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 30 seconds. Cover and let rest for 10 minutes.
Punch the dough down and divide into 12 equal portions. Shape each portion into a ball and place into a round, lightly greased baking dish, spacing evenly. Cover and let rise in a warm, draft-free place for 20 minutes. Mix together the melted butter and honey, and brush lightly over the tops of the rolls. Bake at 400 F for 13-15 minutes or until lightly browned. Serve warm or at room temperature.