Wednesday, October 28, 2015

ABC - Spiced Apple Cream Cheese Coffee Cake

This month's ABC recipe is perfect for the fall season. Warm spices like cinnamon and cloves are very appropriate for this time of year. This recipe for Spiced Apple Cream Cheese Coffee Cake, represents a cake, a cheesecake and caramelized apples, all in one. I really loved it and so did my coworkers. I did make a few changes (such as changing the name) which I've posted at the bottom of this post.

Apple Cheesecake Bars with Caramel Drizzle

If you'd like to join the ABC bakers in their monthly baking adventures, please go to the ABC blog for more information.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

ABC - Homemade Salted Caramels

Although this September post for the Avid Baker's Challenge project is late, it is absolutely delicious and worth the wait. I love caramel candies, especially homemade ones. We had two options: salted caramels or pumpkin spiced salted caramels. I opted for the "plain" ones but then at the last minute decided to add mini chocolate chips for a speckled effect.

I really love pumpkin spice, so I made a quick mixture of cinnamon, ginger and cloves (a tiny pinch each) and then rolled small pieces of leftover caramel (from scraping the pan) in it. Mmmmm, that was wonderful!! Will definitely try that sometime.

Chocolate chip salted caramels

If you'd like to join the ABC bakers in their monthly baking adventures, please go to the ABC blog for more information.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

TBB - Honey Cake

As I'm typing this, I just pulled out another batch of Rose's Granola out of the oven. The smell of toasted almonds and cinnamon wafting through the air, penetrating every room in the house, is amazing.

I digress. Back to the Honey Cake.

I can't believe I made this cake exactly a year ago, when the recipe was published on the NPR site. With nothing to compare it to, and not sure about all the sweet ingredients in the cake, I made half the recipe in my smaller tube pan which I brought back with me from Morocco a few years back. I decreased the sugar by 1/8 cup (which is 1/4 cup if you're making the full recipe). The alcohol in the recipe got replaced by more OJ.

Sweet and moist Honey Cake. Bon Appetit!

Final thoughts/tips:

  • Hubby loved the cake, but did note that it was a bit on the sweet side.
  • I liked the cake too. I had never eaten Honey Cake before so I wasn't sure how "authentic" it was. It was definitely nice and moist with a somewhat complex flavor profile (must be from the coffee). Not sure I'd make it again though.
  • Don't forget to check out the other Alpha Bakers.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

TBB - Woody's Black and White Brownies

This week's challenge for Rose's Alpha Bakers was Woody's Black and White Brownies (recipe can be found in The Baking Bible). I started out thinking I'd make the brownie portion only since it closely resembles the awesome Barcelona Brownies which I've blogged about here. However, these brownies are super chocolatey (a plus for me, not so much for hubby), so I decided to top them with something sweet, that would compliment the brownies well and be super quick and easy. That's when the bag of Kraft caramel bits whispered in my ear, "use me" (don't judge!). I had some leftover chocolate glaze in the freezer for a little drizzle, and voila!

It made sense at the time when I decided to make only half the recipe. As I ate another piece just now, this time it was a cold one from the fridge with a deliciously dense and fudge-like texture, I'm left wondering what I was thinking.

I pushed the nuts into half of the pan and swirled them around the batter using my magic little finger (it was clean) :o)

The Magic Finger

The nutty one is for hubby

The nut-less one is mine.
The candy I used to decorate my piece is actually called a chocolate covered powerberry. It's a fruity jelly-like center covered in dark chocolate from Trader Joe's.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

ABC - Apricot & Almond Olive Oil Cake

This month's recipe for the ABC bakers screams summer to me: Apricot & Olive Oil Cake. Shortly after I had picked this recipe for our August challenge, I ran into some beautiful organic apricots at Trader Joe's. Since they don't last very long, I decided to bake the cake early and not wait till August :o)

Yummy cake!

I've always wanted to make a cake with olive oil so this was my chance to do so. Since I only have extra virgin olive oil, I mixed it with canola oil  50-50, fearing that it would otherwise be too overpowering.

If you'd like to join the ABC bakers in their monthly baking adventures, please go to the ABC blog for more information.