It was finally my turn to pick a recipe for Tuesdays with Dorie after joining way back in April of 2008. I had a hard time narrowing down what my choice would be in the months leading up and had about three I kept going back and forth between. However, when the time came, I decided on these Applesauce Spice Bars with no hesitation. I know they’ve always made me look twice whenever browsing through the book.
Fall Season might officially be about a month away according to the calendar, but these bars will definitely get you in the Fall mood.
They are so very easy to make. You only need a mixing bowl, a sauce pan and basic kitchen utensils. I love recipes like this… perfect for the times when you still want to bake something delicious but don’t have time for something complex and then cleaning up tons of dishes afterwards.
Buttery Brown Sugary glaze…!
They smelled wonderful while baking, the smell reminded me so much of my Grandmother’s house. The bars turned out moist and nicely spiced, chock full of apples, nuts and raisins and covered in a thin layer of buttery brown sugar glaze. Yes! I’m sure if left overnight, the flavors in the bars would have had more time to meld and the spices would become more pronounced – at least, that’s been my experiences with most of Dorie’s spiced recipes. However, these never made it to the second day taste test… the boyfriend and I ate the whole 13×9 pan in one night. Don’t tell anyone.
I liked these bars both plain and with the glaze. I really liked them with a tiny scoop of vanilla ice cream though.
I’m very happy with my choice, it was a total success around here. Thanks to everyone who baked along with me this week. I hope all of you that tried the Applesauce Spice Bars them were pleased. Big shout out to Laurie for creating the Tuesdays with Dorie group and being such a wonderful leader for all of the TWD bakers. And, of course, thanks to Dorie Greenspan for writing the masterpiece that is Baking: From my home to yours.
Next week, I hope to get back in the swing of things and get back to regular baking. Especially since Linda of Tender Crumb has selected Creamiest Lime Cream Meringue Pie on pages 337-339. I had never missed a TWD since April 2008 but since getting our new puppy last month it’s like every previous routine I had flew right out the window! Things are calming down a bit now though and I’m not on a 24/7 puppy watch anymore – more like a 23.5/7 puppy watch now.
Dorie Greenspan’s Applesauce Spice Bars
Pages 117-118, Baking: From my home to yours
For the Bars
1-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter
1 cup (packed) light brown sugar
2 large eggs
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 tablespoon applejack, brandy or dark rum (optional)
1 baking apple, such as Rome or Cortland, peeled, cored and finely diced or chopped
1/2 cup plump, moist raisins (dark or golden)
1/2 cup chopped pecans
For the Glaze
2-1/2 tablespoons heavy cream
1/3 cup (packed) light brown sugar
2-1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 teaspoon light corn syrup
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
GETTING READY: Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 9-x-13 inch baking pan, line the bottom with parchment paper, butter the paper and dust the inside of the pan with flour. Tap out the excess flour and put the pan on a baking sheet.
THE BARS: Whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, spices and salt.In a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan, melt the butter over low heat. Add the brown sugar and stir with a whisk until it is melted and the mixture is smooth, about 1 minute. Remove the pan from the heat.
Still working in the saucepan, whisk in the eggs one at a time, mixing until they are well blended. Add the applesauce, vanilla and applejack, if you’re using it, and whisk until the ingredients are incorporated and the mixture is once again smooth. Switch to a rubber spatula and gently stir in the dry ingredients, mixing only until they disappear, then mix in the apple, raisins and nuts. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top with a rubber spatula.
Bake for 23 to 25 minutes, or until the cake just starts to pull away from the sides of the pan and a knife inserted into the center comes out clean. Transfer the baking pan to a rack and let the cake cool while you make the glaze.
THE GLAZE: In a small saucepan, whisk together the cream, sugar, butter and corn syrup. Put the pan over medium heat and bring the mixture to the boil, whisking frequently. Adjust the heat so that the glaze simmers, and cook, whisking frequently, for 5 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the vanilla.
Turn the bars out onto a rack, remove the paper and invert the bars onto another rack, so they are right side up. Slide the parchment paper under the rack to serve as a drip catcher, grab a long metal icing spatula and pour the hot glaze over the bars, using the spatula to spread it evenly over the cake. Let cool to room temperature before cutting.
Cut into 32 rectangles, each about 2-1/4 x 1-1/2 inches.
Storing: In a covered container, the bars will keep for about 3 days at room temperature. Because of the glaze, they cannot be frozen.
Last weekend was the local Peach Festival around here. It’s a pretty big draw every year, there’s never any place to park and the line of cars waiting to get in usually stretches about three miles. All of us want the same thing… to sample peach cobblers, pies, ice cream, salsa, and even slushies. The boyfriend and I always leave completely peached out, but still take home a huge bag wondering what we’re going to do with them all.
I was craving more cobbler after a few days passed by and I’ve had Tyler’s Bourbon Peach Cobbler recipe bookmarked forever. It was the perfect time to test it out.
I’ve still been out of the baking loop (and down a little over ten pounds now to show for it) and I felt really rusty being in the kitchen again. I was somehow tripling certain ingredients instead of cutting them in half (?) and rummaging around the cabinets not remembering my organized chaos ingredient placements. However, this was a good recipe to sort of get me back in the swing of things. It’s fast, easy and I could make it in just a few pans and bowls using basic kitchen utensils and my hands.
This cobbler is full of fresh peaches, has a thick sauce with a background note of bourbon and just the right sweetness and spice. The biscuits on top are brushed with heavy cream and sugar before baking and are perfect – crunchy on top, moist underneath. I’m telling you, you won’t even need ice cream to go on top of this (although I’m sure it wouldn’t hurt!). I didn’t use any simply because I didn’t have any in the house. The biscuit layers aren’t that overly sweet though, so be aware if you like things a little more sugary that you might want to add a little extra sugar to the dough or make sure you do have ice cream.
The only change I made was to adding a little vanilla to the peach filling. It seemed strange to me not to have any vanilla in the recipe.
I made half a batch and it was gone within an hour between the two of us.
I need more peach cobbler. Now.
Tyler Florence’s Bourbon Peach Cobbler
Show: Food 911 Episode: Chili Roundup
8 peaches, peeled and sliced, about 6 to 8 cups
1/4 cup bourbon
3/4 cup sugar, plus more for dusting
2 tablespoons corn starch
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
16 tablespoons (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter
3/4 cup heavy cream, plus more for brushing
Click here for directions
I do love this Tyler Florence, there’s no doubt about it.
Bourbon Peach Cobbler marks my 20th post for Tyler Florence Fridays, a group with the freedom to make any recipe of Tyler’s that they choose and then share their experiences every Friday.
Hi, remember me?
I think there’s been a time warp.
Somehow, the last five weeks or so have flown by in a blur.
We’ve been on puppy duty and fully immersed in ironing out all of our new routines. Here’s my big girl at 13 weeks old. She’s already getting so big, she’ll be a full size Great Dane in no time it seems. I swear she grows visibly every single day!
I’ve hardly been in the kitchen at all the last five weeks. Heating up cans of soup or grabbing cold pizza out of the fridge wouldn’t count I don’t think. I’ve only actually made something twice and both of those times I was cooking and baking out of… a box. *Gasp!* Anyway, I’ve really missed it. It was my “me” time and something I just naturally did without putting too much thought into it.
So this week I’m back with Tyler Florence Fridays after my little unplanned hiatus. Maybe only halfway because I’m actually kind of cheating, this recipe is one I’ve had saved in my drafts for a while. I made this back in January and never posted it because I felt I couldn’t take a decent picture of it to save my life. But this Apple Cider Chicken was so GOOD and I thought it should be shared since apple cider season is getting into full swing. I also had made Tyler’s Rice Pilaf as an afterthought, just kind of throwing it together using dried herbs I had on hand.
Some of the Food Network reviews complained about the Apple Cider Sauce and how it never got thick enough. I paid attention to this complaint and cooked the sauce on high heat for the recommended time. Doing it this way, I didn’t have any problems at all.
The chicken had a great flavor and was slightly sweet. I will make this again without a doubt, especially now that apple cider is starting to pop up everywhere again. I can’t look at apple cider anymore without thinking back to Tyler and this chicken recipe. Mmmm!
Tyler Florence’s Chicken with Apple Cider Sauce
Show: How To Boil Water Episode: Make It Tonight
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (about 1 pound)
2 teaspoons kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
3/4 cup apple cider
1/2 cup low-sodium chicken broth
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
Click here for directions
Tyler Florence’s Rice Pilaf
Show: How To Boil Water Episode: Make It Tonight
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 shallot, thinly sliced
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
2 cups basmati-style long grain rice
3 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1 bay leaf
1 sprig fresh rosemary
Click here for directions
Chicken with Apple Cider and Rice Pilaf marks my 19th post for Tyler Florence Fridays, a group with the freedom to make any recipe of Tyler’s that they choose and then share their experiences every Friday.
It feels good to get back to the blog. Until next time…
My apologies… I’ve gotten behind with my posting with both a brand new puppy in the house and a new medication that has totally destroyed my appetite for the last couple of weeks. Can you believe I actually cringe at the thought of eating something sweet right now? Oh, the horror!
I’m still checking in on my Google Reader every day to see what everyone is up to but just haven’t found the time to comment. Once things settle down and my sweet tooth returns, I’ll be back to catch up on everything. :)
I’m a little late to the TWD party this week, my apologies. We’ve recently added a new family member and this little bundle of energy has taken up all of my free time. We are first time dog owners so this has been quite the experience for us both as we’re in a constant state of extreme worry and extreme joy over her. It’s been so great. Also, our three cats are responding better than we could have ever hoped.
Our new Great Dane puppy. My boyfriend named her “Kinder”, like the kinder in “kindergarten”. It means “child” in German.
Now, on to the cake. :)
I usually make mention whenever I hit a “milestone” on my blog. This time, it’s my 70th Tuesday with Dorie recipe (which is not how many week’s I’ve been participating with the group, although it’s close, but how many of the TWD selections I’ve made so far). I couldn’t think of a better choice to ring in my 70th with than this Perfect Party Cake. So thank you Carol of mix, mix… stir, stir for choosing it.
This is a white layer cake flavored with lemon and raspberry, with a swiss meringue buttercream and a sprinkling of shredded coconut.
The cakes baked up really nice. I’d never made a swiss meringue buttercream before where you heat egg whites first and then whip up a beautiful frosting with three sticks of butter (yikes!), but everything went smoothly. The raspberry filling was no more than warming up some raspberry jam.
I think I’ve finally conquered my fear of layer cakes. I didn’t have any problems with this recipe at all. My layers weren’t as uniform as I would have liked maybe, but I also kind of cut my cakes in half with reckless abandon so I guess I couldn’t expect that. It was easy to cut and serve, although at times the jam in the layers made it a little slippery.
This cake is definitely perfect for a party. I had a thought while I was tasting it that it would be a good wedding cake too, maybe minus the coconut. I shared it with our neighbors who also really liked it. I don’t think you can go wrong here and it seems like a versatile cake where you could easily change up flavors and it would still turn out great.
Thank you Carol for choosing Perfect Party Cake on pages250-252 of Dorie Greenspan’s Baking: From my home to yours. Please check out the book or stop by Carol’s Blog for the recipe. Next week, the TWD logo contest winner Lisa of Surviving Oz chose Tribute to Katherine Hepburn Brownies on pages 96-97.
At our local orchard they have the most beautiful strawberries right now. I was originally going to use them in a savory dish of but came across this panna cotta and my plans immediately changed.
Vanilla flavored desserts are one of my favorite things in the whole wide world. Sure, I like interesting concoctions with fancy names and out of the norm ingredients – I’m all for that every now and then. But really, simple is how I like it. Give me a vanilla base with a fresh fruit topping and I’m happy. Could that be construed as boring? Perhaps. But what’s good is good.
This recipe called for crème fraîche, which is a thinner and creamier version of sour cream, and something that I couldn’t find anywhere. I made the decision to substitute regular sour cream, I figured it would be alright and it was. Of course, a week later I found crème fraîche at a gourmet market 30 minutes from my house. I seriously hope one day I find one store close by that carries all the stuff I’ll ever need. At this point, I’m going to have to start keeping a damn spreadsheet so I can remember all the places in my state where I find different things. If you have time to spare, you can always make your own crème fraîche using a recipe like this one from Joy of Baking.
I really loved this panna cotta. It was smooth, creamy, and a little tangy. The vanilla was very present and the touch of lemon was nice. The balsamic strawberries were the perfect topping. The texture of it would not set enough to be able to unmold onto a plate like other versions I’ve seen, but it was fine keeping it in the ramekin. Maybe the texture was due to using the sour cream or maybe adding some extra gelatin could have helped. I tasted both components separately and preferred them much more together. I thought the tastes really played off each other well when the panna cotta and strawberries were combined on the spoon.
Loved it. Would make it again without a doubt.
Tyler Florence’s Spring Panna Cotta with Fresh Strawberries and Balsamic Syrup
Show: Tyler’s Ultimate Episode: Ultimate Orecchiette
Cook Time: 15 min
Yield: 4 to 6 servings
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Nonstick spray, for greasing ramekins
1 cup whole milk
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1/2 cup superfine sugar (I put regular sugar in a food processor and pulsed a few times)
1 vanilla bean, seeds scraped (I used vanilla bean paste)
4 strips lemon peel
1 1/2 teaspoons powdered gelatin
1/2 lemon, juiced
1 1/2 cups creme fraiche, room temperature (I substituted sour cream)
1 cup good-quality balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons superfine sugar
1 large carton strawberries, trimmed and quartered
Spring Panna Cotta with Fresh Strawberries and Balsamic Syrup marks my eighteenth post for Tyler Florence Fridays, a group with the freedom to make any recipe of Tyler’s that they choose and then share their experiences every Friday.
Dacquoise (pronounced “da-kwaz”) is a cake made out of nut meringue and layered with, in this case, white chocolate ganache and roasted pineapple pieces. Toasted coconut is pressed all around the edges.
This cake was a little more labor intensive than I thought. At first look the recipe seemed fairly easy, it surprised me when I read over the recipe completely and realized this would most likely be a two day affair for me. It doesn’t really have to be I guess, but due to waiting times on some of the components it made the most sense time wise.
This was really good overall. I loved the white chocolate ganache and the roasted pineapple, while the nut meringue was just ok. This was a recipe I was always interested in Baking: From my home to yours and I’m glad that I finally got to try it. Head on over to Andrea In The Kitchen to check out the recipe.
Next week it’s Dorie’s Perfect Party Cake, see you next Tuesday!
Megan’s Challenge is an optional monthly event over at Tyler Florence Fridays. Megan chooses a recipe for everyone to test out if they want and for June the selection was Tyler’s Summer Rolls with Sweet Chili Dipping Sauce. Words like “Sweet Chili Dipping Sauce” really speak to me, I had to give these a shot.
The rolls are stuffed with cellophane noodles, peanuts, cilantro, and vegetables such as carrots, beets, bean sprouts and fresh chiles. A couple of mint leaves are tucked under the papers before the paper is completely rolled up. I stuck to the recipe on this one but I think you could easily switch up ingredients if you wanted to.
I’ve never made anything like this at home before and I didn’t have any problems. It’s moderate prep work, a little mixing for the sauce and filling, and then rolling up the filling inside wet rice papers.
These were the perfect summer dinner. The rolls are full of flavor from the vegetables and fresh herbs. The cellophane noodles are soft while the peanuts give some crunch. The sweet chili sauce gives a nice twist. I really hate cilantro, at first I was put off by it. I didn’t think I liked the rolls that much but I kept tasting just to make sure. These actually really grew on me, nasty cilantro and all.
The beets turn everything pink inside the rolls. As well as your hands, the counter, the cutting board… you name it. :)
This was such a fun recipe to make. I’m glad I attempted it. Thanks you Megan for choosing the perfect summer recipe!
Tyler Florence’s Summer Rolls with Sweet Chili Dipping Sauce
Recipe courtesy Tyler Florence
Show: Food 911 Episode: Thai One on
Yield: 20 rolls
Rated 5/5 stars on foodnetwork.com
3 ounces Vietnamese cellophane noodles, cooked according to package directions
2 cups bean sprouts
2 carrots, julienned
1 large beet, julienned
1 fresh red chile, cut in circles
2 handfuls fresh cilantro, hand-torn
3/4 cup chopped unsalted peanuts
2 teaspoons dark sesame oil
1 lime, juiced
20 (8-inch) round rice paper wrappers
40 mint leaves
Sweet Chili Dipping Sauce:
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
2 tablespoons fish sauce
1/4 cup hot water
2 tablespoons sugar
1 lime, juiced
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon red chili paste, such as sambal
Click here for directions
Tyler’s Summer Rolls with Sweet Chili Dipping Sauce marks my seventeenth post for Tyler Florence Fridays, a group with the freedom to make any recipe of Tyler’s that they choose and then share their experiences every Friday.
I’m already looking forward to the Peach Festival that comes around here every August. There are peaches as far as the eyes can see. Peach jam, peach cobbler, and peach ice cream all just waiting to come home with me… mmmm. So I was really excited for this weeks Tuesdays with Dorie recipe, Honey Peach Ice Cream. For one, it made the wait for the festival in August not seem so bad. For two, my ice cream maker hadn’t seen any action since last year’s Blueberry Sour Cream Ice Cream. It really needed to be used instead of the canister just taking up room in my freezer.
I picked up some peaches at the organic market, used regular honey in the bear jar, and 2% milk instead of whole. The full recipe calls for 3 egg yolks but I made a half batch. So instead of using 1.5 eggs yolks I just used 2. I added a little extra vanilla to it as well. You have to cook the custard mixture on the stove top first and then chill for a few hours before churning. Then you need to freeze for a few hours before you can enjoy. So make sure you plan a little bit ahead.
This ice cream is delicious. I loved this one, it’s right up there in my favorite Dorie recipes. I loved the smooth, creamy peach flavor. Next time, I think I would puree all of the peaches together instead of having a chunky ice cream – just a personal preference. I will make this again without a doubt, we couldn’t stay out of it and it was gone in no time. I’m really lucky I even got a few halfway in focus pictures to post of this ice cream. I thought I was going to have to make another batch just so I could get some more photos!
Making your own ice cream is really the better way to go over buying it. You know exactly what’s in it, there’s no weird ingredients and you can customize however you want. You don’t even really need an ice cream maker either so don’t fear if you don’t own one. One of the girls over on the TWD P&Q posted a link to David Lebovitz’s technique – check out his article How To Make Ice Cream Without a Machine.
Thanks to Tommi of Brown Interior for choosing Honey Peach Ice Cream for this week’s Tuesdays with Dorie. Check out Tommi’s blog here to view the recipe. Next week, Andrea of Andrea In The Kitchen selected Coconut-Roasted Pineapple Dacquoise on pages 293-295 of Dorie Greenspan’s Baking: From my home to yours. See you next Tuesday!
I didn’t prepare anything for Tyler Florence Fridays this week.
But my boyfriend did.
He didn’t want to do any writing, just the making part and taking the picture**.
Tyler’s Watermelon Gazpacho with Chiles and Feta Cheese
Don’t know if I’ve ever mentioned it here before, but my boyfriend is a pretty amazing cook. Nothing scares him in the kitchen, he will try anything and we’ve had some fantastic meals at home thanks to him. In the past, he’s actually picked a few of Tyler’s recipes at random from foodnetwork.com and I just recently realized this as I was going through my year 2005 printed recipe binder (that was a BIG year for him in the kitchen). I never made the connection since they were “the boyfriend’s recipes” but I had to smile when Mr. Florence’s name was appearing beneath quite a few of my most favorite homemade meals. Like this one.
Anyway, Tyler’s Watermelon Gazpacho with Chiles and Feta Cheese happened to catch my man’s eye while checking out tylerflorence.com last week. He took one look and said “I’m making it.” I thought to myself, of all of Tyler’s dishes he could’ve seen… Gazpacho? Gazpacho to me = ACK! Of course, I wasn’t going to stand in his way. We headed out to the farmer’s markets for all the things he’d need.
He seemed to have an easy time making this, the soup is made entirely in the blender without too much prep work.
The taste test? He loved it.
And me? I was prepared to hate it. I ended up loving it too.
His notes and thoughts:
*the flavor of the feta accented the softer flavors of the watermelon and tomatoes
*watermelon was good in this as it added a sweetness which he liked better compared to other gazpachos he’s had
*would mince up the cucumber a little less, or add some diced cucumber so it had a bit more texture
*would not buy a 7 pound watermelon again just for this recipe (my note: LOL, we had watermelon FOR DAYS)
*he would make this again
The recipe can be found by starting here on Tyler Florence.com. Just select the “Soup” button and scroll down until you see the Gazpacho – it’s the perfect summer recipe. Happy Blending!
Tyler’s Watermelon Gazpacho with Chiles and Feta Cheese marks my sixteenth post (can I still say “my”?) for Tyler Florence Fridays, a group with the freedom to make any recipe of Tyler’s that they choose and then share their experiences every Friday. Thanks to my boyfriend for stepping in this week. It was fun having someone else do the work, but I’ll be back next Friday with my own creation. I really would like to thank everyone for the nice comments and emails I’ve gotten recently, just want you to know it meant a lot and made me smile. Hope you all have a great weekend!
**Oooohhh, the boyfriend’s camera makes me extremely jealous. A Canon EOS 5D Mark II Digital SLR… I’m still trying to get my paws on this baby to test it out, but have not been successful as he won’t let me near it!!