Monday, September 29, 2014

Apple Spice Bundt Cake

Looking for a cake that tastes delicious, puts you in the fall mood, uses up all those apples you've picked, AND could even (maybe) be passed as a breakfast treat!? Well then you have come to the right place! This Apple Spice Bundt Cake encompasses all of the flavors and smells of fall and can be enjoyed at any time of the day!

Apple Spice Bundt Cake


For the cake:
-1 cup (2 sticks) butter
-1 cup sugar
-1 cup light brown sugar
-4 large eggs
-1 teaspoon vanilla extract
-2 cups all-purpose flour
-1 teaspoon baking soda
-1 teaspoon baking powder
-2 teaspoons cinnamon
-1 teaspoon nutmeg
-1 teaspoon allspice
-1 cup nuts (walnuts or pecans - optional)
-Pinch of salt
-Powdered sugar for decoration/dusting

For the apples:
-4 apples peeled and chopped (I used Gala - use your favorite apple)
-Lemon juice

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and grease a bundt cake pan.  Set aside.

Core, peel, and chop the apples and place in a bowl.  Drizzle a little lemon juice over the apples to prevent them from browning.  Set aside.

In another bowl, mix together the butter and sugars.  Then, mix in the eggs and vanilla extract.  Once the wet ingredients are mixed, add in all of the dry ingredients until combined.  Mix in the apples and then pour the batter into the prepared bundt pan.

Bake in the oven for 50 - 60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

Serve warm with ice cream, whipped cream, or plain! This cake goes great with coffee for breakfast or after dinner! You can also have fun and glaze the cake if you wish with a mixture of confectionery sugar and water.  The opportunities are endless! No matter how you have it, I hope you enjoy! Feel free to leave a comment below if you want an idea for a glaze!

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Thursday, September 25, 2014

Apple Crostata

Fall is officially here, so let the apple and pumpkin filled posts begin! Since I always end up overloading on apple pies, crumbles, and crisps, I decided that for this weeks post on the FN Dish Blog, I would make a crostata. 

A crostata is an Italian baked tart that resembles an open faced pie.  There are so many ways that you can make a crostata - like my Blueberry Crostata recipe that you can find here.  However, since it is fall and we are all overloading on apples, I decided to make this fairly quick and easy apple crostata that can satisfy your apple cravings! 

Apple Crostata


Crust (Makes 2 small crusts):
-2 cups all-purpose flour
-1/4 cup sugar
-1/2 teaspoon salt
-1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, diced
-6 tablespoons ice water
-1 egg, lightly beaten with a splash of water for egg wash

Filling (enough for both small crusts or one large crust):
-3 to 4 apples peeled and sliced thin (I used Gala, but you can use whatever type of apple you like best)
-2 tablespoons sugar, plus extra for sprinkling 
-1 tablespoon cornstarch (optional - if you do not use cornstarch, your crostata will just be extra juicy and runny)
-1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
-1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
-Splash of lemon juice to prevent apples from browning

In a bowl, mix the flour, sugar, and salt together.  Slowly add in the butter until the mixture begins to crumble together.  Add the ice water one tablespoon at a time until the dough comes together. You may not need all 6 tablespoons, so make sure to only add the water a little at a time. 

Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and cut into two equal sized pieces.  Wrap in saran wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes and up to 1 hour.  I made two crostata's so I left both mounds of my dough in the fridge, but if you are only making one, then you can keep the extra dough in the freezer until ready to use.

While the dough chills, preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.  Then, mix the apples in a bowl with the sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cornstarch.  If your apples start to brown a little, then splash in a little lemon juice. 

When the dough is ready, roll it out on a prepared pan into a circle and pour the apple filling in the middle.  You can create a pattern with the apples or just dump them all in, which is what I usually do! After all, this is a more rustic, fall recipe!

Leave two inches from the edge of the dough so that you have enough room to fold the dough over at the edges.  Fold and pleat the dough all the way around so that everything is sealed.  Brush the dough with the egg wash and sprinkle some more sugar over the top of the whole crostata.  

Place the crostata into the oven and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until the crust is a nice golden brown and the apples are fork tender and the juices are bubbling.  Serve warm with a scoop of ice cream or whipped cream and enjoy!

The Lemon Bowl: Rainbow Chopped Salad with Apples and Avocados
Weelicious: Apple Butter Turnovers
The Cultural Dish: Apple Crostata
Napa Farmhouse 1885: Apple and Chocolate Cake
Red or Green: Spiced Applesauce
Virtually Homemade: Apple Almond Salad with Honey Mustard Dressing
Elephants and the Coconut Trees: Caramel Apple Cake
Devour: A Week of Apple Recipes
Taste With The Eyes: Bleu Waldorf Petrale Sole
FN Dish: Celebrate Apples with Crisps, Crumbles and Cobblers

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