Friday, November 28, 2008

Baked Ginger-Apple Crumble

2 lb cooking apples (such as combination of Granny Smith and Golden Delicious), pared cored and sliced 1/4" thick
3 Tb. granulated sugar
1 Tb. chopped crystalline ginger
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1 tsp. grated lemon zest
2 Tb. fresh lemon juice
1/3 cup Walnuts pieces
2/3 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
2/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup (packed) light brown sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
Pinch salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted cold butter cut into 10 pieces
whipped cream or ice cream for serving

Preheat oven to 375 and butter 9 inch square baking pan
Toss apples with granulated sugar and both gingers add lemon juice and zest and toss again. Spread apples evenly in buttered pan./
Coarsely chop nuts and mix with brown sugar cinnamon and salt in mixing bowl.. Cut in butter with pastry blender until mixture resembles very course crumbs. (Or, coursely chop nuts in food processor, and dry ingredients and pulse several time to mix. Place butter on top and pulse several times to mix until mixture resembles very course crumbs). Srinkle topping over apples
Bake until apples are tender and topping is browned, 45-50 minutes. Serve warm with with whipped cream or ice cream.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Mary-Lou's Famous Apricot Cake Cookies

Use 18 oz of apricots + ¼ of a 7 oz pkg (pkgs come in 7 or 8 ozs)

1.Chop apricots into small pieces --Place in sauce pot— add water to cover and sugar to taste (approx 1/8 cup ) Simmer slowly until water pretty much absorbed to spreading consistency (will still have a little water still visible). Set aside to cool.

Grind 1# of walnuts and add ½ cup sugar. Blend well with a fork. Set aside.
Grease a large cookie sheet with raised sides. (approx 17 x 12)
Soften ½# margarine to room temp.

Heat oven 350

Mix in large bowl:
5 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup sugar
2 tsp baking soda
4 tsp baking powder

Work-in margarine in above dry ingredients with a pastry blender as you would when making pie crust. It will appear a little lumpy.

Mix with a fork or hand-stirrer blender:
1/2 pt of sour cream
4 egg yolks
1 tsp vanilla

Mix with above dry ingredients. Make sure you get all the flour mixture mixed from the bottom of the bowl. I use my hands. The dough will not be real moist but moist enough to knead into three balls. One ball can be smaller- this will be for the lattice work strips for top of cookie.

1. Roll one ball between wax paper (makes it easier to roll) to size of cookie sheet. This will be a little thin but not too thin to work with. After in cookie sheet press dough to sides having a little dough going up sides of pan to keep nuts on dough. You have to work with dough so that cookie sheet is completely covered. The dough is flexible enough to spread or press with fingers. You can patch holes by pressing pieces of dough on them & spreading with fingers.

2. Add nut mixture on top of dough. Pat nuts down slightly.

3. Roll next ball same way as above. Place on top of nuts. Can be difficult to get entire nuts covered but just roll thin pieces to piece dough together. It won’t show on the finished cookie but just make sure all nuts are covered. Raise sides slightly to hold apricots .

4. Spread apricot mixture on top

5. Roll 3rd ball out - cut in strips –place strips on top of apricot to form lattice work, I put strips length wise, then from side to side and lastly place strips along all sides to cover all strips. If strips break, just cut small piece or as long as needed & press together.

Bake 350 for 25 min. (Seem like it stays moister if frozen. Can freeze up to 1 year. Enjoy

Mary-Lou's Famous Nut Roll

A perennial holiday favorite, and one of those recipes that we just couldn't allow to vanish from the family history. From Mary-Lou (the Tiger Woods of nut roll) herself.


For every 2 cups of nuts use : 1 cup sugar & ½ cup water
Boil water & sugar 1 min. – add nuts – bring to boil – stir – let cool

Use big old-fashioned coffee cups for all dry ingredients

6 heaping cups unsifted flour
½ lb margarine (room temp)
¾ cup sugar heaping (coffee mug)
½ tsp salt
1 pt milk
1 heaping tlbs crisco
¼ pt sour cream
3 eggs
½ cake yeast (not dry yeast)

Sift flour, sugar & salt in a big pot (like one you make soup in) or huge bowl. Add butter and Crisco & work in with a pastry blender or 2 knifes, if no pastry blender, like pie dough. 
Warm ½ cup of the pint of milk slightly. Add 2 tsps of sugar in warmed milk to dissolve yeast. Don’t make milk hot or it will Kill yeast. Press yeast with fork in milk mixture until completely dissolved. 
Beat eggs slightly – add sour cream & remaining ingredients to dough. Mix together with your hand until all flour & ingredients are thoroughly mixed together & form a big ball. Let raise in pot or bowl in a very warm place. I put afghans on pot & open my gas oven door & let pilot light heat dough – or you can put it near a register, but not too close. (good to cover with afghan) It should raise to almost double it’s size.
Let raise for 2 hrs.

After 2 hrs, knead- sprinkle with little flour if needed to make dough smooth. It should not stick to hands. Make six balls out of dough. Roll one ball on a floured board or your table – fairly thin because it is going to raise again but not so thin that it will tear when putting on nuts. 
Spread nuts thinly with a spatula on dough just to cover dough blending or thinning out to ends of dough. Roll up dough jelly roll fashion and crimp edges so that nuts don’t come out when baking. 
Place folded side down on cookie sheet Puncture roll with a fork down to cookie sheet several times down roll approx 1” apart. Brush with melted butter. Repeat You can fit two rolls on a cookie sheet. Try not to let rolls touch each other. If they are wide & look like they might touch when baking, put a strip of foil between o that they don’t touch. Do same with all rolls. 
Put wax paper over rolls & cover with afghan to keep warm until you are done making rolls and ready to bake. Or if you want to make bread or kolach with one of the rolls, you can take the ball & twist it to form a round kolach & place it on the cookie sheet- puncture, brush with melted butter & bake.

Bake at 350 for 40 min or until golden brown. Brush with melted butter when done – after cooling for a while, turn roll over to complete cooling.

Sounds complicated but once you do it you will see it’s not that bad. Let me know if you want to make them & I will come over to help. (<- now that's the kind of loving mom-advice that it's just hard to replicate on the web...)