Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Grandma's Apple Cake

So here's another awesome fall recipe! I just moved and I wanted to take something over to my neighbors. I decided it should be something a little more fun than just cookies so in the spirit of fall I decided to try to make my grandmother's apple cake. This is my favorite thing that she makes and my grandmother is an awesome baker. It was my first time trying it but it turned out delicious! Set aside a good amount of time to make this as it took me a while to peel, core and dice up my apples but if you have one of those awesome apple peelers or even an apple corer (is that a word?) it'll probably go a lot faster...
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 3/4 c sugar
  • 2 c flour
  • 1 c oil
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 c chopped nuts ( I used pecans. They were delicious but expensive! 15$ for a bag)
  • 4 or 6 diced and peeled apple chunks (My chunks were about 1 inch and I used about 4 Granny Smith apples which worked perfectly) *Fun tip: Freeze the peels then add them to post-workout smoothies for some added fiber
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Mix sugar + oil, add eggs and beat all really well together (I used a mixer but you could use a whisk)
  3. In seperate bowl stir baking soda, cinnamon, salt and flour together.
  4. Add dry ingredients to your sugar, oil and egg mixture and mix together but don't blend (basically use either your mixer on the lowest setting or just stir it all together by hand)
  5. Add apple chunks and nuts (I wasn't sure how much apple to add and thought I had added too much as there didn't seem to be enough batter but it ended up working out perfectly)
  6. Bake for 60 minutes (this may seem like a long time and I kept checking it but it worked out perfect. Touch the top of the cake and if it springs back up it's done, if it causes a dent it's not)
yummy apple batter- I swear these pictures will get more appetizing once I get a better camera haha

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Pumpkin Seeds (in flavors!)

So it's fall (more specifically it's halloween time) and that of course means pumpkin carving which of course means pumpkin seeds!

Don't judge me for what I'm about to say- I still can't scoop out the inside of my own pumpkin. It makes me gag. It's a texture thing I think. When I was young my parents did it. In college I bribed my friends to do it. This year the boyfriend refused to do it so I wore rubber kitchen gloves and managed to make it through. The only good thing about the disgusting inside of a pumpkin is the seeds. The lovely boyfriend redeemed himself by picking out all the seeds of both our pumpkins (he says this took him 3 hours, I think this is an exaggeration but regardless those 3 hours were well worth it.

I made three batched of pumpkin seeds with different seasonings (something I had never heard of until my friend was talking about cinnamon sugar pumpkin seeds. Between a mix of google and common sense and learning from my mistakes I have come up with 3 recipes for the variety of roasted pumpkin seeds I made.

We stored our whole mess of pumpkin pulp and seeds in a mixing bowl in the fridge for 2 days until the boyfriend had time to pick all the seeds out. Then he stored them an additional day in the fridge until I had time to bake them. Put seeds in a colander then rinse them and get the big pieces of pulp off. Don't worry if some pulp stays; it adds flavor. Spread the pumpkin seeds out on a pan or towel and let them dry overnight. DO NOT let them dry on a paper towel. It will stick to them.

For each flavor I used about 1 1/2 cups of pumpkin seeds.
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Melt 1 tbs of butter in small bowl
  3. Add 1 1/2 cups of pumpkin seeds
  4. mix all together (clean fingers work best)
  5. Add seasonings (as follows) mix altogether again
  6. Spread out on greased baking sheet (I used tinfoil for quick cleanup)
  7. Cook for 30 mins (Stir now and then during baking so the seeds cook somewhat evenly)

2 tbs granulated sugar
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 tbs cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt

1 tbs red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper

1 tsp ground pepper
1 tbs garlic powder
*Mix these together in the bowl, then once you've spread the seeds out on cooking sheet (make sure it's well greased) sprinkle 1/2 cup of shredded cheese (I used a blend of parmesan and asiago that came in a convenient shaker from my local Kroger and is normally used on top of spaghetti, so fancy- just kidding)