CARROT CAKE CUPCAKES with LEMON CREAM CHEESE FROSTING

This makes a wonderful bundt cake for any holiday!

CARROT CAKE CUPCAKES with LEMON CREAM CHEESE FROSTING adapted from Al Made It For You yield 10 cupcakes

CUPCAKES
1½ cups grated carrots
½ cup WELL DRAINED crushed pineapple
1 cup (120g) cake flour
¼ cup (31g) all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
½ heaping teaspoon QUALITY ground cinnamon
⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg
⅛ teaspoon ground ginger
⅛ teaspoon ground allspice
⅛ teaspoon ground cardamom
2 LARGE eggs
¾ cup (150g) light brown sugar
½ cup (120ml) Avocado oil
1 (5 ounce) (142 grams) OUI lemon Greek yogurt
½ teaspoon PURE vanilla extract
1/3 cup crushed finely chopped walnuts
1/2 cup golden raisins

  • Preheat the oven to 325°.
  • Line a muffin pan with paper liners, and set aside.
  • In a small bowl, combine the cake flour, all-purpose flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and spices. Set aside.
  • In a separate bowl, combine the eggs, sugar, oil, Greek yogurt, and vanilla extract.
  • Combine the flour mixture, crushed pineapple and grated carrots mixing just until combined.
  • Add to wet mixture and blend well.
  • Fold in raisins and all but 2 tablespoons of walnuts.
  • Scoop out the batter evenly into 10 paper liners, and bake for 18-20 minutes.
  • Let them cool in the pan for a couple minutes before taking them out to a wire rack to cool completely.

FROSTING
8 oz (225g) cream cheese, softened at room temperature
½ cup (113g) unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
1½ cup (188g) powdered sugar
½ teaspoon grated lemon zest

  • In a mixing bowl, beat the unsalted butter until it becomes fluffy.
  • Add the cream cheese and continue to beat.
  • Add powdered sugar and lemon zest, beating to incorporate until smooth.
  • Add frosting to piping bag and pipe cupcake tops as desired. The frosting recipe makes the right amount for piping swirls. You’ll only need two-thirds of the recipe is needed if piping bursts instead.
  • Sprinkle with reserved walnuts.

NOTE:  This makes a WONDERFUL small bundt cake.  Adjust the baking time from 18-20 minutes to 35-45 minutes.

BLUEBERRY LEMON CHEESECAKE CAKE

I was originally saving this recipe for Easter, but then we had a good friend who had a birthday.  Can I just say he is very hard to buy for?  His wife suggested I just bake him something and this recipe immediately came to mind.  I sent the big cake to him to share with Heather and the munchkins, but I did have to make 2 small ones for hubby and I also. SHHH don’t tell 😀

BLUEBERRY LEMON CHEESECAKE CAKE adapted from Cafe Delites

  • Preheat oven to 350°F.
  • Lightly grease an 8-inch round springform pan with cooking oil spray and set aside.

BLUEBERRY CAKE
1/4 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice (juice from 1 LARGE lemon)
1/2 cup WHOLE milk
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
3/4 cup sugar
2 LARGE eggs
1 tablespoon lemon zest (zest of 1 LARGE lemon)
1 1/2 cup all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
5 ounces FRESH** blueberries (I like SMALL wild blueberries)

  • Whisk lemon juice with the milk and set aside to sour creating your “buttermilk”.
  • In a large bowl, beat together the butter and sugar until light and creamy.
  • Beat in the eggs and zest until light and creamy.
  • Beat in the lemon juice and milk mixture.
  • Add the flour, baking powder and salt, mixing them first on top of the wet ingredients, before folding them in to combine the batter.
  • GENTLY Fold in 3/4’s of the blueberries.

CHEESECAKE
1 cup light cream cheese, at room temperature
1/3 cup plain 2% Greek yogurt
1/3 cup powdered sugar
1 heaping tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 LARGE egg
2 tablespoons fresh squeezed lemon juice

  • Beat the cheesecake ingredients together until smooth and lump free, about one minute on low speed.

ASSEMBLY

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Evenly pour half of the cake batter into the prepared pan.
  • Pour 1/3 of the cream cheese mixture over blueberry cake layer (DO NOT SWIRL).
  • Pour the remaining cake batter over the cream cheese; then pour the remaining cream cheese mixture over the top to evenly cover the cake.
  • Sprinkle remaining blueberries over the top.
  • Bake in preheated oven 65 – 70 minutes, until the center is just set (it will have a very slight wobble to it). If you find it is browning after 30 minutes, tent with foil being careful the foil does not stick to the cheesecake.
  • Remove from the oven and allow to cool for an hour or so.
  • Once cake has chilled, remove from pan onto a serving dish.
  • Pour the glaze evenly over the top and allow to drizzle down the sides of the cake.
  • Cover and refrigerate for AT LEAST 6 hours or over night BEFORE serving.

CREAM CHEESE GLAZE
1/2 cup cream cheese, at room temperature
1 cup natural powdered sugar
3-4 tablespoons fresh squeezed lemon juice
2 tablespoons water as necessary for a thinner consistency

  • Beat all glaze ingredients together until smooth.

FINAL ASSEMBLY

  • Prepare glaze.
  • Once cake has chilled, remove from pan onto a serving dish.
  • Pour the glaze evenly over the top and allow to drizzle down the sides of the cake.
  • Add a few fresh blueberries for garnish.
  • Cover and refrigerate for AT LEAST 6 hours or over night BEFORE serving.

NOTES: Frozen blueberries can be used, but MUST be completely thawed and drained WELL.

 

APPLE SLAB PIE – 3 WAYS – APPLE CARAMEL, APPLE CHEDDAR & APPLE STREUSEL

I’ve been working on this post since last July when I promised to find my slab pie recipes for my nieces.  Katie and Lulu I am so sorry this took so long – I sure hope you enjoy them!  I hope having all 3 versions together inspires you to make your own.

Today I made “half” pies in the same pan so they almost looked more like a galette, but they tasted perfect! 😀

APPLE CHEDDAR SLAB PIE
Pie Crust dough for a 2 crust pie (homemade or Pillsbury)
3/4 cup + 1/4 cup + 1/4 cup finely shredded sharp cheddar cheese
3 pounds Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and cut into 1/4 inch slices
1/2 cup sugar
Juice of 1 LARGE lemon
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
4 tablespoons COLD unsalted butter, cubed
1 LARGE egg, beaten

  • Preheat oven to 400°.
  • Lightly flour your work surface.
  • Unroll first pie crust and sprinkle with 1/4 cup finely shredded cheddar cheese. Top with second crust and roll out to a 17×12 inch rectangle.
  • Place crust in a 15×10 jelly roll pan. Refrigerate while you prepare the filling.
  • In a large mixing bowl toss apple slices with lemon juice, salt, sugar and 1/4 cup of the flour.
  • Remove piecrust from refrigerator.
  • Spread apple mixture evenly into crust.
  • Sprinkle with 1/4 cup cheddar cheese.
  • In food processor pulse together the brown sugar, rolled oats, 1/4 cup flour and cold butter until crumbly.
  • Sprinkle evenly over pie.
  • Fold crust edges over pie like a Galette.
  • Brush with egg.
  • Bake 35-45 minutes until browned.
  • Cool 1 hour.
  • Cut into squares and serve with a dollop of vanilla ice cream.

APPLE STREUSEL SLAB PIE
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
1 teaspoon +1 teaspoon QUALITY cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon FRESH ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
12 ounces COLD unsalted butter, cubed
1/4 cup + 2/3 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup golden raisins
3 pounds Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and cut into 1/4 inch slices

  • Preheat oven to 400°.
  • Lightly flour your work surface.
  • Unroll first pie crust and sprinkle with 1/4 cup finely chopped walnuts and 1 teaspoon cinnamon.
  • Top with second crust and roll out to a 17×12 inch rectangle.
  • Place crust in a 15×10 jelly roll pan.
  • Refrigerate while you prepare the filling.
  • Combine brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt.
  • Combine 3/4 cup of the sugar mixture with 1 1/2 cups of the flour, the butter and 2/3 cup chopped walnuts cutting in butter until coarse crumbs form. Set aside.
  • Combine remaining sugar with apples and 1/4 cup flour.
  • Spread apple mixtures over crust evenly.
  • Fold crust edges over pie like a Galette.
  • Sprinkle with crumb mixture.
  • Bake 35-45 minutes until browned and bubbly.
  • Cool 1 hour.
  • Cut into squares and serve with a dollop of vanilla ice cream.

I did save the BEST for last, at least in my opinion.  This pie tastes just like a caramel apple! The beauty though is that there is a thin and flaky crust that houses the juicy apples and crispy crust and is drizzled with a luscious homemade caramel for a melt in your mouth tasty treat.

CARAMEL APPLE SLAB PIE

CRUST
2¼ cups all-purpose flour
¾ teaspoon salt
⅔ cup CRISCO butter-flavored shortening
8 tablespoons cold water

  • Spray a 15x10x1 inch jelly roll pan with non stick cooking spray and set aside.
  • In a large bowl combine flour and salt. Using a pastry blender cut in the shortening until it resembles coarse crumbs.
  • Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of the cold water over the mixture and toss with a fork. Repeat using 1 tablespoon of water at a time until it is moistened and knead the dough into a ball.
  • Preheat oven to 375°.
  • On a lightly floured surface, roll dough into a 19×13-inch rectangle.
  • Wrap it around the rolling pin and unroll it into the prepared baking pan.
  • Ease dough into the pan and up the sides, being careful not to stretch it.
  • Trim dough to ½ inch beyond edge of pan.
  • Fold dough edge over and flute as desired.

APPLES
⅔ cup sugar
⅓ cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons QUALITY ground cinnamon
1/2 cup golden raisin, optional
3½ pounds granny smith apples, peeled, cored, and cut into ¼-inch-thick slices (about 10 cups)

  • In an extra large bowl combine the sugar, ⅓ cup flour, cinnamon, raisins and apples.
  • Toss until coated.
  • Spoon the mixture on the dough and spread evenly.

CRUMB TOPPING
1 cup quick-cooking rolled oats
1 cup packed brown sugar
½ cup all-purpose flour
½ cup butter, cold

  • In a large bowl, stir together quick-cooking rolled oats, packed brown sugar, and all-purpose flour.
  • Using a pastry blender, cut in butter until topping mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
  • Sprinkle EVENLY on top of apples.
  • Bake for 40-45 minutes or until apples are tender.
  • Cool slightly.

NOTES:

  • IF you are in a hurry, melting the butter and using a fork to mix it all together works well too.
  • IF TOP IS BROWNING TOO QUICKLY, COVER LIGHTLY WITH A PIECE OF FOIL.

CARAMEL
1 cup PACKED brown sugar
4 tablespoons butter
½ cup half-and-half
1 tablespoon PURE Vanilla
Pinch of salt

  • Mix all ingredients together until smooth in a medium saucepan over medium-low to medium heat.
  • Cook while whisking gently for 5 to 7 minutes, until thicker.
  • Turn off heat.
  • Serve warm or refrigerate until cold.
  • Drizzle on top of apple slab pie.

NOTE:  If you don’t use all your streusel topping, it stores perfect in the freezer.

HONEYED BOGS

So I woke up this morning and really wanted to bake even though I can’t personally eat any of it. 😀  I’ve been itching to try something out of my new cookbook from the Prohibition Bakery. All the recipes are boozy and sound absolutely delectable!  I love their slogan, please eat responsibly.

Unfortunately, I don’t have on hand all the ingredients to make any one of their recipes EXACTLY as written so right out of the gate I’m improvising. This recipe is going to be “loosely” based on their PINK LADY recipe on page 181 AND their CARAMEL APPLE recipe from page 277.  I wasn’t thrilled with their PINK LADY frosting so I’m using the basic frosting from their CARAMEL APPLE but replacing the applejack brandy with the honey brandy I’m using to make the fruit puree.

HONEYED BOGS – yields 18 cup cakes

CAKE
1 2/3 (208g) cup flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup yogurt (240g) (I used a black cherry)
1/3 cup (70g) avocado oil
1 cup (200g) sugar
1/4 cup (60g) lemon juice
2 teaspoons lemon zest
2 eggs

  • Preheat oven to 325°.
  • Line tins with liners
  • Whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
  • Combine the yogurt, avocado oil, sugar, lemon juice and zest with mixer until well incorporated.
  • Add eggs one at a time, blending well after each addition.
  • With mixer on low, gradually add the dry ingredients, mixing until JUST combined. DO NOT OVER BEAT.
  • Fill cup cake liners two-thirds full.
  • Bake for 18-20 minutes until toothpick comes out clean.
  • Cool COMPLETELY before filling or icing.

PUREE
12 ounces cranberries
3/4 cup sugar*see note
1 1/4 cup honey brandy

  • Combine fruit and brandy in a saucepan.
  • Bring to a SLOW boil over a medium heat.
  • Simmer 10-15 minutes until fruit breaks down and mixture starts to thicken.
  • Remove from heat and transfer to food processor, blending until smooth.
  • Store in refrigerator until ready to use.

NOTE:

  • *Cranberries are tarter than most fruits and require a bit of sugar to tame them.
  • Cranberries also require more time to break down the skins so a nice SLOW boil and simmer gives them this time.

FILLING
1 cup (230g) cranberry puree
1/4 cup honey brandy

  • Whisk the puree until smooth.
  • Slowly add in the brandy 1 tablespoon at a time, stirring thoroughly after each spoonful until desired consistency reached.
  • Transfer to a squeeze bottle.

ICING
1 stick unsalted butter, softened
1 pound powdered sugar
1/3 cup Honey Brandy

  • Cream butter until fluffy.
  • Slowly add the powdered sugar until JUST incorporated.
  • Slowly stream in the brandy until icing is smooth and fluffy.
  • Transfer to a piping bag.

ASSEMBLY

  • Core each cupcake with a pastry tip.
  • Fill the cavity with puree. DO NOT OVERFLOW.
  • Frost each cupcake.
  • Decorate to your liking.

BANANA NUT ROLL

I have no excuse for NOT making this recipe sooner and hubby is really made that I didn’t.  This is one of those recipes that you could make each and EVERY week and NEVER get tired of!!

BANANA NUT ROLL
CAKE
4 eggs
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
pinch of salt
1/2 teaspoon PURE vanilla extract
1/3 + 1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup mashed banana
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/4 cup finely chopped walnuts
1/4 cup (garnish) finely chopped walnuts
1/4-1/3 cup golden raisins

  • Separate eggs. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes.
  • Lightly grease 15×10 jelly roll pan. Line with wax paper and grease the wax paper. Set aside.
  • Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and pinch of salt. Set aside.

 

  • Prepare the cream cheese filling. (SEE BELOW)
  • Spread filling in prepared pan. Set aside.

 

  • Preheat the oven to 375°.
  • In a small mixing bowl beat the egg yolks with the vanilla, beating about 5 minutes until thick and lemon colored.
  • Gradually add the 1/3 cup sugar beating on high until sugar is completely dissolved.
  • With a spatula fold in banana and 1/2 cup nuts until well blended.
  • Thoroughly wash the beaters.

 

  • In a separate chilled clean bowl beat egg whites until soft peaks form.
  • Gradually add the 1/2 cup sugar until STIFF peaks form.
  • Fold banana mixture into the egg whites GENTLY and JUST until combined.
  • GENTLY spoon batter over the filling in the pan and carefully spread evenly.
  • Bake 15-20 minutes or until cake springs back.
  • Immediately run a knife around the edge of the pan and turn cake out onto a cheesecloth sprinkled with powdered sugar.
  • Carefully peel off wax paper and discard.
  • Sprinkle with 1/4 cup finely chopped walnuts and raisins.
  • Starting from the short side, roll cake into a spiral.
  • Cool on a wire rack.
  • Prepare icing.
  • Spread with cream cheese icing.
  • Sprinkle with finely chopped nuts.

CREAM CHEESE FILLING
8 + 3 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg
3 tablespoons milk

  • Combine softened cream cheese in mixing bowl with the sugar, beating until smooth.
  • Add egg and milk, beating until well blended.

CREAM CHEESE ICING
3 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1/2 teaspoon PURE vanilla extract
2 cups sifted powdered sugar
1-2 tablespoons milk

  • Combine cream cheese, almond extract and vanilla extract, beating until light and fluffy.
  • Gradually beat in the powdered sugar.
  • Add in milk 1 tablespoon at a time to reach a spreadable consistency.

NOTEThis icing recipe makes enough to cover the ENTIRE roll thickly.  If you just want a drizzle, cut the icing recipe in half!

BLUEBERRY COFFEE CAKE


BLUEBERRY COFFEE CAKE
CAKE

1 cup all purpose flour + 1 tablespoon
1 tablespoon for dusting
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup Stevia in the raw
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon PURE vanilla
1 cup whole milk
3/4 cup frozen small wild blueberries DO NOT THAW

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Grease and flour dust 13×9 baking dish. Set aside.
  • Sift together 1 cup flour, baking powder and salt.
  • In a larger mixing bowl cream the butter with an electric mixer.
  • Add Stevia and brown sugar, beating until fluffy.
  • Add eggs 1 at a time beating JUST until blended in.
  • Reduce mixer speed. Add flour mixture and milk alternately until well blended.
  • GENTLY toss blueberries with 1 tablespoon flour.
  • Fold blueberries GENTLY into batter.
  • GENTLY spread batter into prepared baking dish.

TOPPING
2/3 cup frozen small wild blueberries DO NOT THAW
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

  • Whisk together the sugar and cinnamon.
  • Toss blueberries in the sugar mixture.
  • Scatter blueberries and sugar evenly on top of batter.

 

  • Bake cake 45 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.
  • Cool cake in pan 10-15 minutes before cutting.

NOTE: You can use FRESH berries.  But, if using FROZEN berries DO NOT THAW!!  Thawing the berries makes them too watery and will turn your batter blue.

BANANA PUMPKIN MERINGUE PIE

When we go antiquing one of my favorite finds are old recipe boxes, BUT they have to be full of lovingly handwritten recipes!  Needless to say between these finds, cookbooks and magazines I have amassed a LARGE amount of recipes to try or if you will, scraps of recipes, hence the new meme name.

Years ago I participated in a meme called Magazine Monday in an effort to clean out magazines and cook booklets hosted over at the now defunct blog Cream Puffs in Venice. I’d love to revive that meme AND clean out ALL my scraps of paper, but as I don’t know how to contact her for her permission to use the meme, I’ve decided to create my own theme called RECIPE SCRAPS and even better it won’t be tied to a specific day 😀  I like not assigning a specific day to this theme AND even better these scraps of paper will go away forever as I try each recipe.

BANANA PUMPKIN MERINGUE PIE
1 pie crust (homemade or store bought – your choice)
1 can Libby’s pumpkin puree
6 bananas
3 eggs
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1/2 teaspoon FRESHLY grated nutmeg
pinch FRESH ground salt

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Arrange unpeeled bananas on cookie sheet and roast 10 minutes. Remove from oven and cool before handling.
  • Increase oven temperature to 375°.
  • Line a 9 inch pie plate with pie dough.
  • Lightly brush the edges of the pie shell with heavy cream to create a perfect, golden brown finish.
  • Peel bananas.
  • Add bananas to food processor and puree.
  • Add sugar, eggs, cream, pumpkin pie spice, butter, nutmeg and salt.
  • Add pumpkin and stir until JUST incorporated.
  • Transfer to pie plate.
  • Bake 50 minutes or until set around edges and only slightly jiggles.
  • Cool completely on rack.

MERINGUE
4 egg whites
6 tablespoons powdered sugar
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
pinch FRESH ground salt

  • Preheat oven broiler.
  • Beat egg whites until frothy.
  • Add cream of tartar and powdered sugar 1 tablespoon at a time until stiff glossy curled peaks form.
  • Spread on filling being sure to seal the edges to the pie crust.
  • Swirl meringue with the back of a spoon to create decorative peaks.
  • Broil at least 4 inches from the heat source for 5-7 minutes or until lightly golden.
  • Let cool 30 minutes before slicing.

NOTE:

  • Preparing your meringue in a freezer chilled metal bowl with freezer chilled beaters helps with the meringue success.
  • If you have a kitchen torch, you can also use this method as an alternative, but be careful to spread the flame evenly across the entire surface to achieve a uniform look.

CRANBERRY CHERRY MERINGUE PIE with VODKA PIE CRUST

The BEST pies MUST start with the BEST crust, one that is tender and flaky as well as flavorful!  One of my keys to that crust is VODKA! It adds the moisture when you need it, but then evaporates during baking leaving a tender flaky crust in its wake.

CRANBERRY CHERRY MERINGUE PIE with VODKA PIE CRUST

PIE CRUST (makes 2 9 inch pie crusts)
2 1/3 cups all purpose flour
1 tablespoon FINE sugar
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
6 tablespoons REALLY COLD** unsalted butter, cut into cubes
6 tablespoons REALLY COLD** Crisco stick**, cut into cubes
6-8 tablespoons Vodka

  • Preheat oven to 425°.
  • Whisk together the flour, sugar and salt.
  • Using a pastry blender cut in butter and Crisco until mixture is crumbly.
  • Using a fork add Vodka 1 tablespoon at a time until mixture comes together to form a ball.
  • Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and gently knead into a ball.
  • Form into 2 disks and wrap in saran.
  • Refrigerate at least an hour.
  • When ready to bake, roll out 1 disk on a lightly floured surface to size and transfer to pie plate.
  • Trim crust and flute edge.
  • Refrigerate 30 minutes.
  • Line pie crust with a double layer of foil and fill with beans or pie weights. DO NOT PRICK THE PIE SHELL!
  • Bake on lower rack 15-20 minutes until edges are a light golden brown.
  • Remove weights and foil and bake 5 minutes more.
  • Cool COMPLETELY on wire rack.
  • Reduce heat to 325°.

FILLING
3 1/2 cups FRESH cranberries
1/2 cup chopped cherry pieces
1/2 cup orange juice
1/4 cup water
1 1/2 cups sugar
4 LARGE eggs, separated
1/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons WONDRA flour
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
2 tablespoons butter, cubed
1 teaspoon PURE vanilla

  • In a large sauce pan combine, cranberries, cherries, 1/2 cup sugar, orange juice and water. Bring to a boil and stir until sugar is completely dissolved.
  • Reduce heat to a simmer, stir occasionally and cook uncovered 7-10 minutes until cranberries have all popped.
  • Remove from heat.
  • In a small bowl whisk together egg yolks, 1/4 cup sugar, flour and salt until well blended.
  • Gradually whisk in about 1/2 cup of the cranberry mixture to temper the eggs.
  • Add back to the cranberry mixture and return to a low heat stirring constantly until a gentle boil. Cook a few minutes more.
  • Remove from heat and stir in butter and vanilla.
  • Cool while preparing the meringue.

MERINGUE
4 LARGE egg whites
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 teaspoon PURE vanilla
1/2 cup sugar

  • Beat egg whites with cream of tartar and vanilla until foamy.
  • Add the remaining sugar 1 tablespoon at a time beating on high until sugar is dissolved.
  • Beat until you have stiff glossy peaks.
  • Pour warm filling into pie crust.
  • Spread meringue over filling sealing the edges to the pastry.
  • Bake 25-30 minutes until meringue is golden brown
  • COOL COMPLETELY on wire rack for 1 hour.
  • Refrigerate and CHILL at least 4 hours before serving.

NOTES:

  • Cranberries will pop on their own, but if they need a little help, use the back of a spoon and pop them against the side of the pan.
  • After I cut the butter and Crisco into cubes I place them on a small plate in my ice tray until I need them.
  • You can use frozen cranberries and cherries, but be sure to thaw completely and drain well.
  • Pineapple juice can easily be substituted for the orange juice.
  • For BEST results chill beaters and metal mixing bowl in freezer for making the meringue.

CARAMEL APPLE SLAB PIE

I’m posting this recipe for my nieces while I keep looking for the one I actually promised them.

Before we get into the recipe I thought I’d share a little about crust making.

PERFECT BLUE RIBBON PIE CRUST TIPS

There is nothing as good as a flaky, buttery, tender homemade crust in my opinion. Sure, remade is convenient, but it just doesn’t compare. You DON’T have to be a BLUE RIBBON baker to make a great crust either.

Pie dough is basically three simple ingredients; flour, fat and water in EXACT, or at least near exact proportions.

While you supposedly don’t need to sift flour anymore, you do need to stir it up to make it fluffy before measuring. Personally, I still use a sifter. Use a spoon to put the flour in your measuring cup and a knife to level it off. Just scooping into the flour bin tends to pack the flour too tightly.

Be SURE to use COLD fats whether it’s butter, shortening or lard. This is a step that helps make your crust flaky. If you’re recipe calls for fat in a liquid form it will be more tender than flaky. When you cut in your fats STOP when you have pieces the size of peas. Anything too large will allow the dough to form holes in your crust when the fats melt. If the pieces are too small they melt too fast taking away from the flakiness of your crust.

Be sure and add your COLD water only a tablespoon at a time JUST until the dough holds together. DO NOT OVER MIX! Add just enough water to bring the dough together so you can form a ball.

BLIND BAKING (cooking the crust by itself before adding the filling) makes a stronger crust for filling. There are many tricks for doing this. One of the simplest methods is to add a piece of heavy duty folded piece of foil to the inside of the crust and gently form the foil to the pie pan shape. Partially bake the crust, remove the foil, add the filling and finish baking. You will probably want to add a piece of foil around the edges to keep your edges from browning too fast and burning. Many times I add a layer of beans on top of the foil to keep it weighted so it doesn’t bubble and blister. If you’re making a pie with an unbaked filling, remove the foil halfway through the baking time, prick the bottom with a fork and return the crust to the oven to finish baking.

NOTES:

  • TOO MUCH flour or water will make your crust TOUGH.
  • TOO MUCH fat will make your crust crumbly and fall apart.
  • TOO MUCH WATER = STICKY MESS
  • NOT ENOUGH WATER = BIG CRACKS IN YOUR DOUGH

TRICKS:

  • Use 2 sheets of wax paper when rolling your dough so you don’t need to add additional flour. I prefer to do this to keep the crust from getting too tough.
  • Carefully roll your dough gently around your rolling pin and move it to your pie pan and gently unroll to avoid stretching or tearing it. You can also carefully fold your disc in quarters to move it to the pie plate.

This pie tastes just like a caramel apple! The beauty though is that there is a thin and flaky crust that houses the juicy apples and crispy crust that is drizzled with homemade caramel for a melt in your mouth tasty treat.  There are 2 versions CARAMEL APPLE SLAB PIE and APPLE PUMPKIN SPICE SLAB PIE

CARAMEL APPLE SLAB PIE – 25 pieces

  • Prep time 40 mins
  • Cook time 45 mins
    Total time 1 hour 25 mins

CRUST
2¼ cups all-purpose flour
¾ teaspoon salt
⅔ cup CRISCO butter-flavored shortening
8 tablespoons cold water

  • Spray a 15x10x1 inch jelly roll pan with non stick cooking spray and set aside.
  • In a large bowl combine flour and salt. Using a pastry blender cut in the shortening until it resembles coarse crumbs. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of the cold water over the mixture and toss with a fork. Repeat using 1 tablespoon of water at a time until it is moistened and knead the dough into a ball.
  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  • On a lightly floured surface, roll dough into a 19×13-inch rectangle.
  • Wrap it around the rolling pin and unroll it into the prepared baking pan.
  • Ease dough into the pan and up the sides, being careful not to stretch it.
  • Trim dough to ½ inch beyond edge of pan.
  • Fold dough edge over and flute as desired.

APPLES
⅔ cup sugar
⅓ cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons QUALITY ground cinnamon
3½ pounds granny smith apples, peeled, cored, and cut into ¼-inch-thick slices (about 10 cups)

  • In an extra large bowl combine the sugar, ⅓ cup flour, cinnamon and apples.
  • Toss until coated.
  • Spoon the mixture on the dough and spread evenly.

CRUMB TOPPING
1 cup quick-cooking rolled oats
1 cup packed brown sugar
½ cup all-purpose flour
½ cup butter

  • In a large bowl, stir together quick-cooking rolled oats, packed brown sugar, and all-purpose flour.
  • Using a pastry blender, cut in butter until topping mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
  • Sprinkle EVENLY on top of apples.
  • Bake for 40-45 minutes or until apples are tender.
  • Cool slightly.

NOTE: IF TOP IS BROWNING TOO QUICKLY, COVER LIGHTLY WITH A PIECE OF FOIL.

CARAMEL
1 cup PACKED brown sugar
4 tablespoons butter
½ cup half-and-half
1 tablespoon PURE Vanilla
Pinch of salt

  • Mix all ingredients together until smooth in a medium saucepan over medium-low to medium heat.
  • Cook while whisking gently for 5 to 7 minutes, until thicker.
  • Turn off heat.
  • Serve warm or refrigerate until cold.
  • Drizzle on top of apple slab pie.

MAPLE CINNAMON OATMEAL CAKE with OOEY GOOEY COCONUT TOPPING

I found this awesome and not too sweet Oatmeal cake while surfing the web awhile back and had to make it!  My grandmother made one similar quite often.  It was always one of my favorites!  I’ve made a few changes to accommodate our tastes and we think it turned out even better than the original.

Oatmeal and coconut go together so well. The cake is over-the-top scrumptious with an incredibly moist batter and ooey gooey coconut topping that self ices the cake. Once cooled, the topping becomes caramel-like and sticky seeping deep into the cake!

The recipe is for a 9×13 pan, but it halves well for an 8×8 if you want a smaller cake.

MAPLE CINNAMON OATMEAL CAKE with OOEY GOOEY COCONUT TOPPING

CAKE
1 1/4 cup boiling water
1 cup OLD FASHIONED oats
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
1 cup white sugar
1 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons PURE maple syrup
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 1/2 cups AP flour
1/4 nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Pour boiling water over oats in a small bowl.  Allow to sit for 15 minutes.
  • Cream together butter and sugars.  Add eggs.  Beat well.
  • Add in the soaked oats, vanilla, baking soda, flour, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt.
  • Mix well.
  • Fold in raisins.
  • Pour into a greased 9 x 13 pan.
  • Bake for 30 minutes.

TOPPING
1/2 cup butter, melted
2 cups flaked coconut
1 1/2 cups brown sugar, firmly packed
8 tablespoons milk
1 cup pecans, chopped finely (optional**)

  • While cake is baking, combine topping ingredients.
  • JUST after you take the cake from the oven, spread topping over cake.
  • Increase heat to broil.
  • Bake under the broiler for a JUST few minutes until top is brown. WATCH CAKE CLOSELY – IT WILL EASILY BURN.
  • Allow cake to cool COMPLETELY.  As it cools, the topping will get thick and sticky while it oozes down into the cake.
  • ENJOY!

NOTES:

  • ANY chopped nuts work really.
  • I often add pieces of chopped dried pineapple to the cake.
  • I also often add heath bar pieces to the topping for some extra crunch.

PINEAPPLE ANGEL FOOD SNACK CAKE

PINEAPPLE ANGEL FOOD SNACK CAKE
1 box Angel Food Cake Mix
1 large can crushed pineapple with juice
1 can COMSTOCK cherry, blueberry or apple pie filling

  • Mix them together, pour into a spring form, bundt pan or 13×9 baking dish.
  • Bake 30-35 minutes in a 350°.
  • Voile’, a light and fruity dessert.
  •  Spoon Comstock cherry, blueberry or apple pie filling over each piece if desired.

NOTE: It is very good with a warmrum raisin sauce also.

BANANA PINEAPPLE SOUR CREAM PUDDING CAKE

BANANA PINEAPPLE SOUR CREAM PUDDING CAKE
8 ounce can crushed pineapple in juice (DO NOT DRAIN)
1⁄2 teaspoon baking soda
18 ounce yellow cake mix
7 ounce package Jell-O instant banana pudding mix
4 eggs
1 cup sour cream
1⁄4 cup oil

  • In a small bowl, combine pineapple and the baking soda; mix well.
  • 
In a large mixing bowl, combine remaining ingredients; stir in pineapple.
  • Blend, then beat at medium speed with an electric mixer for 2 minutes.
  • Pour into a greased and floured 10-inch Bundt or tube pan.
  • Bake at 350° for 50-55 minutes or until cake springs back when lightly touched.
  • Cool in pan about 15 minutes.
  • Remove from pan and finish cooling on wire rack.
  • 
Dust with powdered sugar

LINKING TO: CELEBRATE YOUR STORY, CRAFTASTIC MONDAY, DISHING IT & DIGGING IT, NIFTY THRIFTY SUNDAY, SHOW & TELL, SUNDAYS AT HOME, SUNDAY’S BEST, THAT DIY PARTY, JCOOKING & CRAFTING WITH J&J, INPIRATION MONDAY , INSPIRE ME MONDAY , MADE BY YOU MONDAY, MAKE IT PRETTY MONDAY, MELT IN YOUR MOUTH MONDAY, MERRY MONDAY, MIX IT UP MONDAY, MOTIVATE ME MONDAY, PROJECT INSPIRED, SHOW AND SHARE, TUTORIALS & TIP , DIY TUESDAYS, LOU LOU GIRLS FABULOUS PARTY, THE SCOOP, TREASURE BOX TUESDAY, TUESDAYS AT OUR HOME, TUESDAYS WITH A TWIST, CREATIVE INSPIRATIONS, SHARE YOUR CUP , WINTER BLUES WEDNESDAY, WONDERFUL WEDNESDAY, SHOW ME WEDNESDAYS, WOW US WEDNESDAY , CREATIVE CIRCLE, DAGMAR’S PARTY, HOME SWEET HOME, FAVORITE THINGS, GRACE AT HOME, HOME MATTERS, PIN JUNKIE PIN PARTY, TALK OF THE TOWN, BLOGGER’S PIT STOP, HANDMADE HANGOUT, PRETTY PINTASTIC PARTY, SHARE IT ONE MORE TIME, SWAY SHAREFEST, WHAT TO DO WEEKENDS PARTY, BOUQUET OF TALENT PARTY, INSPIRE-BE-INSPIRED, RAE GUN BLOCK PARTY, I’M LOVIN’ IT, THIS IS HOW WE ROLL THURSDAY, FULL PLATE THURSDAY, FOODIE FRIDAY, SOUPER SUNDAY, BETH FISH READS, SATURDAY SPARKS, AMAZE ME MONDAY, INSPIRE ME TUESDAY, SHARE YOUR STYLE, OVER THE MOON