Monday, October 26, 2009

apple cranberry crisp

the goods:
unsalted butter, for baking dish
2.5 pounds sweet, firm Gala apples, peeled, cored, and cut into 1/2-inch dice
12 ounces cranberries (fresh or frozen)
1/2 cup sugar
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon grated orange zest, plus 1 tablespoon fresh orange juice

crisp topping:
6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
2/3 cup all-purpose flour
2/3 cup rolled oats
3/4 cup packed light-brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Butter a 9x13 or 10x10 baking dish.

In a large bowl, combine apples, cranberries, sugar, flour, vanilla, and orange zest and juice.

Transfer to a baking dish.

In a medium bowl, combing crisp ingredients. Pinch together with your fingers until coarse crumbs form.

Sprinkle crisp topping over apple mixture.

Bake until topping is browned and juices are thick and bubbling around edges, 55 to 60 minutes. Let cool 15 minutes before serving. Serve with vanilla ice cream.

Monday, October 12, 2009

lemon-zucchini cornmeal cookies

the goods:

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup confectioners' sugar
1 teaspoon packed finely grated lemon zest
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup fine cornmeal
1 medium zucchini, grated on small holes of a box grater (about 1 cup)

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

In a medium bowl, mix butter and sugar with a wooden spoon until pale and fluffy.

Stir in vanilla, lemon zest, and salt.

Add flour and cornmeal.

Mix until mixture is crumbly.

Add zucchini and stir until a thick dough forms.

Drop dough by rounded tablespoons, 2 inches apart onto a parchment-lined baking sheet.

Bake until cookies are light golden brown at edges, 25-30 minutes.

Let cool completely on wire racks.

Serve with milk!

Monday, October 5, 2009

plum cake

the goods:

3/4 cup (1 and 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 and 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup packed light-brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest
1/4 cup sour cream
3 plums halved, pitted, and cut into eighths
confectioners' sugar for dusting

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Butter and 8-inch cake pan and line bottom with a round of parchment paper. In a medium bowl, whisk together 1 and 1/2 cups flour, baking soda, and salt.

Using an electric mixer, beat butter a sugars until light and fluffy. With mixer on low, beat in eggs one at a time, until incorporated; beat in vanilla and lemon zest. Beat in 1/2 the flour mixture, then sour cream. Add remaining flour mixture; mix just until combined.

Spread batter into pan and smooth top. In a bowl, toss plums with 2 tablespoons flour.

Sprinkle plums over batter.

Bake until cake is golden, about 30 minutes; loosely tent with foil and bake until cake pulls away from side of pan, about 30 minutes more.

Let cake cool completely in pan. Run knife around cake edge and remove cake from pan.

Dust with confectioners' sugar before serving.