Thursday, March 19, 2009

Apple-Cinnamon Muffins

I was excited to find this recipe in my latest issue of The Baking Sheet (from King Arthur Flour) because it is another way to use the Cinnamon Bites Teresa bought for me. I also needed to make homemade muffins because recently we bought some Costco muffins. Joshua was appalled (although he did like the muffins)! He was afraid I had decided to stop cooking and baking all together since Costco was now here. (This was the first time in his life we had purchased muffins! Plus, I have been using Costco quite a bit for "catering"-type functions lately.) The muffins turned out great, and I hope Joshua was somewhat reassured that I still enjoy baking.

2 cups (8-1/2 ounces) white whole wheat flour
1/2 cup (2 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup (1/2 stick, 2 ounces) unsalted butter
1 cup (7 ounces) granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon boiled cider (optional)
1 cup (8 ounces) sour cream
1 cup (4 ounces) grated cooking apple
3/4 cup (4 ounces) cinnamon chips
1/2 cup (3 ounces) cinnamon Flav-R-Bites (optional)
Coarse or Demerara sugar to sprinkle tops

Preheat the oven 400 F. Lightly grease a muffin tin, or line with papers and spray the insides.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flours, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; set aside. In a large mixer bowl, cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy and almost white in color. Scrape down the bowl to make sure all the butter is incorporated, then turn the mixer back on and add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the boiled cider and sour cream, and mix until incorporated. Add the dry ingredients, mixing on low speed just until the batter is smooth. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl once more, to be sure everything is evenly combined. Gently fold in the apples, cinnamon chips, and Flav-R-bites.

Scoop into greased or paper-lined muffin cups, sprinkle the tops with sugar, and bake for 15 to 18 minutes or until muffins are done. Remove from the oven and cool in the pan up to 5 minutes, then remove muffins from pan to finish cooling on a rack so they don't steam and get tough.

Sunday, March 15, 2009


Follow Kendra's Breadstick Twists recipe, but when you roll out the dough, use some butter on half the dough and sprinkle with 1/2 cup brown sugar and 1 T. cinnamon mixed together. Then, fold the plain dough half over top of the cinnamon-sugar half. Cut into strips, twist, roll in butter, and bake. Serve with a thin powdered-sugar icing to dip in. So good! (I made these a second time and spread them out just a bit so they were not so crowded in the pan. We liked them a little better the second time. Also, you can add more sugar to the dough if you prefer a sweeter dough. It's really good either way, since you can dip in as much frosting as you like!)

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Deep Dish Sausage Pizza

I felt like trying a new recipe tonight. Stephen says it is a "keeper". I had no clue that a deep dish pizza was so deep. It's almost as deep as a pie! And the diced tomatoes instead of a sauce were really tasty. The recipe is from 2000 Taste of Home Annual Recipes, page 90. I grouped things in a way that made more sense to me.

1 tablespoon active dry yeast
2/3 cup warm water
1 3/4 to 2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon each dried oregano, basil and marjoram
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
1/2 teaspoon onion salt

4 cups shredded mozzarella, divided
1 large onion, chopped
2 medium green peppers, chopped
1/2 teaspoon each dried oregano, basil and marjoram
1 tablespoon olive or vegetable oil
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 pound bulk pork sausage, cooked and drained
1 can (28 ounces) diced tomatoes, well drained
2 ounces sliced pepperoni

In a mixing bowl, dissolve yeast in water. Add flour, oil and seasonings; beat until smooth. Add enough remaining flour to form a soft dough. Knead until smooth and elastic. Place in a greased bowl; turn once to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.

In a skillet, saute onion, green peppers and spice in oil until tender.

Roll out dough into a 15-inch circle. Transfer to a well-greased 12-inch heavy ovenproof skillet, letting dough drape over the edges.

Layer the following on the dough:

1 cup mozzarella cheese
1/2 of onion & pepper mixture
1/2 of Parmesan cheese
1/2 of cooked sausage
1/2 of tomatoes
2 cups mozzarella cheese
1/2 of onion & pepper mixture
1/2 of Parmesan cheese
1/2 of cooked sausage
1/2 of tomatoes

Fold crust over to form an edge. Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes. Sprinkle with pepperoni and remaining 1 cup mozzarella cheese. Bake 10-15 minutes longer or until crust is browned. Let stand 10 minutes before slicing. YIELD: 8 slices