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.
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.
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!
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!
Simple is best.
The Tuesdays with Dorie pick for this week was Parisian Apple Tartlet chosen by Jessica of My Baking Heart. Only four ingredients are needed to make it and the most work you’ll have to do is peel an apple. That’s my kind of recipe.
For how easy this is, the tartlets deliver taste wise. But then again, all of the ingredients by themselves taste good. Dorie says many fruits would work well with this. I think the mango or apricot versions in the Playing Around section would be interesting to try. I’m sure a lot of the TWD members have experimented with different fruits, be sure to stop by the Tuesdays with Dorie blogroll to check out a few.
Thanks to Jessica for a great choice this week, I can see myself making this again. Please visit My Baking Heart to view the recipe or see Dorie Greenspan’s fabulous book Baking: From my home to yours on page 319. Next week, Tommi of Brown Interior selected Honey-Peach Ice Cream on page 437. I can’t wait to break out my ice cream maker again, the Blueberry Sour Cream Ice Cream that I posted back in August 2008 was the first and last time I have used it. Sad.
This Tuesday, Tracey of Tracey’s Culinary Adventures selected Cinnamon Squares. A layer of cinnamon espresso chocolate chips in the middle of a cinnamon cake that’s topped with a bittersweet chocolate frosting… Whoa, mama.
I halved the recipe and baked in a small round cake pan for about 25-30 minutes. I took the cake out even though the middle was still streaking the knife a little bit. Once it cooled, everything was all good and the cake was totally done without being overly done. I forgot that I had ran out of sugar while making last week’s Chipster-Topped Brownies so I made this all with Splenda instead of running to the store. I felt weird about it, I’ve never baked with anything but sugar but it worked out fine. This cake was pretty cinnamony, actually a bit much – but I’m not the biggest fan of cinnamon so what was strong for me may be ok for others. All in all, I did like it but I’m not too sure I’d make it again. The pluses about it: it smells great while baking, tastes good plain, is made even better by the chocolate icing, and is one of those outside of the norm recipes that is a refreshing change every now and then.
I’m exhausted today from working overtime so I’m keeping this short and sweet. Please head on over to Tracey’s blog Tracey’s Culinary Adventures to view the recipe or check out Dorie Greenspan’s Baking: From my home to yours on pages 210 and 211. See you next Tuesday for Parisian Apple Tartlet chosen Jessica of My Baking Heart!
Kelly of Baking with the Boys selected Fresh Mango Bread for the May 19th edition of Tuesdays with Dorie. I was real excited about this choice, this bread has always interested me because, well, mango bread is not something you see every day. Or ever.
This bread is spiced perfectly with ginger and cinnamon and has big chunks of mango and raisins. It’s similar to a banana bread but soooo much better.
I bought a mango but it go too ripe so I ended up using pre-cut mango chunks instead. I switched out light raisins for dark, dark brown sugar for light, and left out the lime zest because I simply forgot to put it in. I made a full recipe and baked for about one hour and 30 minutes. Stirring up this batter really hurt my arms, it was some THICK stuff. I felt totally weak and made a vow to do my 30 Day Shred video for more than just one day (have I done it for more than that first day?…. no). I used a foil tent the entire baking time so the top didn’t get too brown – better safe than sorry, and also followed the instructions about double lining the pans so the bottom didn’t brown too much either.
I had a piece soon after taking it out of the oven but, in my opinion, you really need to leave this bread alone for an entire day wrapped in plastic wrap. It was good that first day, but the second day it was perfection. The flavors and textures needed time to develop.
Also, the top gets kind of crispy which is one of my favorite things to have happen in baked goods. Can you tell I liked this bread? I really did. I even talked about it with a friend the next day and since I bake a lot more now than I ever have, I don’t talk much about individual recipes anymore outside of this blog.
Thanks to Kelly of Baking with the Boys for choosing this week’s recipe. Head on over here to view the recipeor you can check out Dorie Greenspan’s Baking: From my home to yours on page 45. Next week, it’s Chipster-Topped Brownies chosen by Beth of Supplicious.
Lemon Tarts are yummy. This one is interesting because it uses whole lemons. After I had already made and tasted this, I read some tips from other bakers about removing the white pith from the lemon before using. This is definitely what I should have done because at times it was a tad too bitter. Not really tart… just bitter. But I was able to overlook that and still really enjoy it since the crust and powdered sugar did a good job of cutting it down. I used Dorie’s plain sweet tart dough and doubled the egg yolk while decreasing the butter. I’ve found that increasing the egg yolk in her tart dough recipes works better for me as it reduces crumbliness. I made the lemon filling as directed.
Thanks to Babette for choosing Tartest Lemon Tart. For the recipe, stop by Babette Feasts. Next week, it’s Fresh Mango Bread!
I was excited by this choice because it was cake and it wasn’t chocolate. But it was a layer cake… eeek! Things don’t always work out 100% with me and layer cakes.
Tiramisu (translates to “pick me up”) is a popular Italian cake that’s usually made with ladyfingers soaked in espresso, layered with a mascarpone filling and then dusted with cocoa powder. This version uses a sponge cake for the ladyfingers. There are a few other parts to this: an espresso syrup, an espresso extract, and the frosting. No step is hard.
My experiences: The cakes rose a ton in the oven. I was surprised when I opened the door how they were towering over the pans. This made for some big layers and I didn’t think there was enough frosting to really cover like I like things covered. I would double it next time. I used Kahlua for the flavoring. Mini chocolate chips for the chocolate. I only added the espresso extract to the frosting, so to me there wasn’t a real strong coffee flavor (which I liked). I drink TONS of coffee but I don’t like it as a flavoring in foods. I used a few organic chocolate covered coffee beans on top.
This cake was good and very moist. I would make it again. Even though me and layer cakes aren’t the best of friends, this one was really pretty painless.
Short post, I’m late for work!! Thanks to Megan for a great choice this week. To see the recipe, head on over to Megan’s blog My Baking Adventures. See you next Tuesday!