Skillet Cranberry and Apple Cake

This easy skillet cake with cranberries and apples highlights some of my favorite fall flavors – in a lightly spiced batter.

This easy skillet cake with cranberries and apples highlights some of my favorite fall flavors – in a lightly spiced batter.

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 Fall and winter are such cozy seasons for baking that I find myself with something in the oven at least a few times a week. This skillet cake is a wonderfully versatile recipe that you can really serve any time of day.

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This post is sponsored by Lodge Cast Iron. Their new bakeware line is gorgeous, sturdy, super versatile (hello, stove to oven to table!) and sure to become some of your favorites. I’ve used Lodge Cast Iron for years in my kitchen and I was very excited to learn about their new line of bakeware including this Baker’s Skillet which is perfect for everything from a savory quiche to a simple and comforting cake like this one. 


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Have a slice with tea or coffee in the afternoon, but make sure to save a bit for breakfast the next day too. Or, you can dress it up with a little bit of confectioner’s sugar and whipped crème fraiche for a gorgeous, low lift dessert.

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 The addition of rye flour here makes the cake exceptionally tender and I love the addition of tart cranberries for both color and a little pop of bright flavor that offsets the sweet and spice. If you don’t keep rye flour you can substitute and equal amount of all purpose or whole wheat flour, and feel free to sub pears for the apples too. 

Skillet Rye Cranberry Apple Cake

Makes one 9 or 10-inch cake

 3/4 cup (150g) light brown sugar

2 large eggs

1/2 cup (115g) unsalted butter, melted

2/3 cup (160g) crème fraiche

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

1 cup (130g) all purpose flour

1/2 cup (65g) light rye flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

3/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1 1/2 cups peeled and chopped apple, from 1 large apple

3/4 cup (75g) fresh or frozen cranberries

4 teaspoons crunchy sugar like turbinado 

Confectioners sugar and whipped crème fraiche to serve, if desired

1. Position a rack in the center of your oven and preheat the oven to 350°F. Generously butter the Lodge Bakers’s Skillet or 9-inch cake pan

2. In a large bowl, whisk the brown sugar and eggs until pale and foamy, about 1 minute. Add the melted butter, crème fraiche, and spices. Whisk until smooth and emulsified. 

3. Add the flour, baking powder, and salt and whisk until almost combined. 

4. Switch to a rubber spatula and add the cranberries and apples. Fold to combine making sure no streaks of flour remain.

4. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top of the batter with an offset spatula. Sprinkle the sugar over the top. 

5. Bake until puffed and golden, and a tester inserted into the center comes out clean, 25 to 35 minutes. Set the pan on a rack to cool. Serve warm or room temperature with a dusting of confectioners sugar and whipped crème fraiche if desired.

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Cranberry and Apple Cider Caramel Pie

This Cranberry and Apple Cider Caramel Pie is a perfect Fall treat. With a crisp, tender all butter crust, this lattice topped beauty would be perfect at any holiday table.

This Cranberry and Apple Cider Caramel Pie is a perfect Fall treat. With a crisp, tender all butter crust, this lattice topped beauty would be perfect at any holiday table.

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I’ve partnered with Bob’s Red Mill and Bake from Scratch magazine to be part of their Better Baking Academy this year, and I’m talking about one of my favorite subjects - Lattice Topped Pie. Each month they share a new recipe with lots of in-depth step-by-step photos tricks and tips. Head over to Bake from Scratch to see their technique for adding lattice to the top of a custard pie. 

For this recipe, I went with some of my favorite fall fruits - apples and cranberries with a generous amount of apple cider caramel mixed in. The caramel is also delicious on its own or on top of ice cream, I’m sure you’ll find a way to use it. 

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Lattice topped pies can seem intimidating because at first glance, but once you try it, you realize it’s not as scary as it seems. Here are some tips for pie dough success!

Some Pie Dough Tips

  • Keep everything cold. That means making sure your butter is cold and cubed and the water is icy. You can even chill your bowl and flour if you want to go the extra mile. I usually don’t do this because I work quickly, but it’s a great way to buy yourself some extra chilled time. 

  • Hydrate the dough properly. Add enough water to the dough so it holds together easily, but not so much that it’s wet. Dry dough is a pain to work with because it will fall apart on you and wet dough will be tough and chewy. If you have any dry spots in your dough you can sprinkle a few drops of water just in that spot to hydrate. 

  • Don’t overmix. Make sure that the dough is well and evenly mixed, you can even knead it a few times, but don’t go crazy and knead it like bread dough. You want to press it together firmly, while making sure there are distinct flat bits of butter in the dough that will puff up and make it flaky.

  • Let it rest. Give the dough some time to relax and hydrate. It will make the dough easier to roll out and flakier in the end.

  • Keep it cool (again). There is nothing more frustrating than trying to maneuver warm, melty, falling apart dough into a woven pattern. If they are tearing on you and you get frustrated, try transferring all of the lattice strips to a parchment lined baking sheet to chill for a few minutes while you gather your composure. Better yet, do this before you start weaving if you are worried about it. 

  •  Have Fun! Don’t worry about it too much! No one will notice if your strips aren’t all the same size! Add some decorative cutouts if you are feeling it!

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This filling combines some of my favorite fall flavors into a gorgeous and delicious holiday showstopper. The cider caramel is just as good on its own as it is combined with these gorgeous fall fruits. Make sure to save the extra to drizzle on top of the warm slices of pie. 

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Sponsored Post: This post was created in partnership with Bob’s Red Mill and Bake from Scratch magazine.


Cranberry and Apple Cider Caramel Pie

 Dough adapted from Bake from Scratch magazine

Pie Dough 

Makes 1 (9-inch) double crust

 4 cups (500 grams) Bob’s Red Mill Organic All-Purpose Flour

1/4 cup (50 grams) granulated sugar

1 tablespoon (9 grams) kosher salt

1 1/3 cup (303 grams) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch cubes

13 to 14 tablespoons (195 to 210 grams) ice water

 

Cider Caramel

Makes about 1 1/2 cups 

 1 cup (200 grams) sugar

1/4 cup (60 grams) water

1/4 cup (60 grams) butter

1/2 cup (120 grams) heavy cream

1/4 cup ( 72 grams) boiled cider syrup (see note)

1 teaspoon (4 grams) vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon (1.5 grams) kosher salt

  

Filling

 3 medium baking apples  like mutsu or honey crisp (about 450 grams), peeled and thinly sliced

3 cups (345 grams) cranberries

1/2 cup (100 grams) sugar

4 tablespoons (32 grams) cornstarch 

2 teaspoons (4 grams) cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

Pinch salt

1/2 cup (125 grams) cider caramel

Make the dough: In a large bowl, stir together flour, sugar, and salt. Using your fingers to press and cut in each piece of cold butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs and butter is pea-size to walnut-size, flat shards. Make a well in center, and add 13 tablespoons (195 grams) ice water. Stir with fingers, and knead dough together just until dry ingredients are moistened. Add additional 1 tablespoon (25 grams) water if needed. Alternatively, in the work bowl of a food processor, place flour, sugar, and salt; pulse until combined. Add cold butter, and pulse until mixture resembles coarse crumbs and butter is pea-size. With processor running, pour 13 tablespoons (195 grams) ice water through food chute in a slow, steady stream just until dough comes together. (Mixture may appear crumbly. It should be moist and hold together when pinched.) Add additional 1 tablespoon (25 grams) water if needed.

Turn out dough, and divide in half (about 530 grams each). Shape each half into a disk. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour. Dough may be refrigerated for up to 3 days or frozen for up to 2 months.

Make the cider caramel: Combine the sugar, water, and butter in a medium saucepan. Cook over medium heat, swirling the pan occasionally, until the sugar melts and turns deep amber in color , about 10-15 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat then carefully whisk in the cream, cider syrup, vanilla, and salt. Mixture will bubble vigorously. Let the sauce cool to room temperature before using.

Assemble the pie: On a lightly floured surface, roll half of Pie Dough into a 13 1/2-inch circle (3/16-inch thick). Transfer to a 9-inch pie plate, pressing into bottom and up sides. Freeze until firm, 20 to 30 minutes.

Prepare the filling: In a large bowl combine the sliced apples, cranberries, sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Toss gently to combine. Drizzle the caramel over the top and stir gently.

Assemble the pie: Transfer the filling into the chilled pie dough and press gently to compact the fruit. 

On a lightly floured surface, roll remaining Pie Dough into a 14-inch circle (1/8 inch thick). Using a pastry wheel, cut 2 inches off one side of dough; set aside. Starting at cut edge, cut 12 (3/4-inch-wide) strips; set aside any unused rolled-out Pie Dough. Place 6 strips horizontally over the filling. Fold back alternating strips, and place 1 strip vertically across horizontal strips; unfold strips. Repeat weaving with remaining strips, starting and ending at 1-inch marks and spacing strips 3/4 inch apart. Using kitchen scissors, trim strips even with the bottom crust, leaving about 1/2-inch overhang. Roll the bottom crust up and over the trimmed lattice and press gently. Use a fork dipped in flour to press the rolled edge down onto the pie pan. Use scissors to trim the fork-crimped edge flush with the pie pan. Place the pie on a baking sheet. 

 If desired, use small decorative cutters or scissors to cut remaining rolled-out Pie Dough and scraps and place on baking sheet around the pie. Refrigerate until firm and ready to use, 20 to 30 minutes.

Bake the pie: Preheat oven to 400°F (200°C) with a rack set in the bottom third. 

 In a small bowl, whisk together 1 egg (50 grams) and 1 teaspoon (5 grams) water. Brush lattice with egg wash. Brush bottom of each cutout with egg wash, one at a time, and place around outside edge of lattice, overlapping slightly. Brush tops of cutouts with egg wash. 

Bake the pie for about 1 hour or until it is deep golden brown and the juices are bubbling. If the edges begin to darken before the filling is bubbling, tent the edges with aluminum foil. Let cool before slicing. Serve with additional cider caramel sauce.


Note: Boiled cider can be purchased or you can make your own. For this recipe, add 4 cups of apple cider to a large pot set over high heat. Bring the mixture to a full boil, and cook until reduced to 1/2 cup, stirring occasionally. This will take about 30 minutes but keep a close eye on it. It will darken slightly and thicken to the consistency of thin honey when ready.

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Grilled Apples a La Mode

Grilled apples make the best summer dessert! Grill them with sugar and spices until tender, then serve them with “a la mode” with melty vanilla ice cream. Here’s one of the best desserts out there: grilled apples! It’s carefree, easy, and a la mode (which makes everything better). Thinly slice those apples and throw them in a foil packet with sugar and spices. The grill turns them tender and velvety, with subtle nuance of smoke. Top with melty vanilla ice cream, and well: it doesn’t get any better than this! It’s easy to make up a packet and cook it while prepping the rest of a grilled dinner. When you’re ready for dessert: pop open the packet and get out some forks! Ingredients for grilled apples Grilled apples don’t need much to taste incredible: just sugar and spices! These apples are just sweet enough, because they’re designed to be covered in melty ice cream. Here’s what you need to make grilled apples: Apples: The best grilled apples are good baking apples: firm tart-sweet varieties like Honey Crisp, Jonathon, Granny Smith, Gala, Fuji, etc Brown sugar and white sugar: Or substitute any type of sugar you like (coconut sugar, etc). Cinnamon […]

A Couple Cooks – Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

Grilled apples make the best summer dessert! Grill them with sugar and spices until tender, then serve them with “a la mode” with melty vanilla ice cream.

Grilled apples

Here’s one of the best desserts out there: grilled apples! It’s carefree, easy, and a la mode (which makes everything better). Thinly slice those apples and throw them in a foil packet with sugar and spices. The grill turns them tender and velvety, with subtle nuance of smoke. Top with melty vanilla ice cream, and well: it doesn’t get any better than this! It’s easy to make up a packet and cook it while prepping the rest of a grilled dinner. When you’re ready for dessert: pop open the packet and get out some forks!

Ingredients for grilled apples

Grilled apples don’t need much to taste incredible: just sugar and spices! These apples are just sweet enough, because they’re designed to be covered in melty ice cream. Here’s what you need to make grilled apples:

  • Apples: The best grilled apples are good baking apples: firm tart-sweet varieties like Honey Crisp, Jonathon, Granny Smith, Gala, Fuji, etc
  • Brown sugar and white sugar: Or substitute any type of sugar you like (coconut sugar, etc).
  • Cinnamon
  • Ginger
  • Nutmeg
  • Vanilla ice cream: This adds the final bit of sweetness. If you want to omit, add a touch more sugar to the apples if you like.
Grilled apples

How to cut apples…the fast way!

For these grilled apples, you’ll need to cut them into 1/4-inch slices. You can leave the peel on (we did!), or remove it if you prefer desserts with peeled apples. Somehow, we only recently learned how to cut apples the fast way. Here’s the trick of how to quickly thinly slice apples: check out the video below!

  1. Holding the core of the apple, use a large chef’s knife to slice off four sides of the apple, cutting as close to the core as possible.
  2. Take one of the quarters and place it flat side down on the cutting board. Then cut it into thin slices.
  3. Repeat with the remaining quarters!

How to slice apples

Tips on how to grill apples

Apples are easiest to grill in a foil packet. You’ll just need to know a few basic items: grill temperature and approximate timing. Memorize that and then make them on repeat all summer! Here’s what you need to know (or jump right to the recipe):

  • Preheat a grill to medium high heat: that’s 375 to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Cut the apples into thin slices. See the video above!
  • Place them on foil and season with sugar and spices. Then add another sheet of foil on top, seal it, and poke holes for air to escape.
  • Grill over indirect heat for 20 to 25 minutes, until the apples are tender. Serve with ice cream or whipped cream! We like eating it right out of the packet.
Grilled apples

More topping ideas!

What else can you use to top grilled apples? So many things. Take this to over-the-top grilled dessert status by adding any of the following:

  1. Substitute ice cream for homemade whipped cream (or vegan whipped cream).
  2. Try bourbon-infused whipped cream. (Yes!)
  3. Drizzle with caramel sauce.
  4. Sprinkle with maple pecan granola crumbles.
  5. Add toasted almonds.
  6. Top with glazed pecans or glazed walnuts.
  7. Drizzle with balsamic reduction.
  8. Top with a buttered rum sauce.
  9. Add sprinkles (why not?).
  10. Drizzle with a vanilla cream sauce.

Love grilled desserts? Also try our Grilled Pineapple: it also works a la mode! It’s great with some of the toppings above, and especially tasty with toasted coconut and fresh mint.

Grilled apples

This grilled apples recipe is…

Vegetarian, vegan, plant-based, dairy-free, and gluten-free.

Print
Grilled apples

Grilled Apples a La Mode


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (6 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

Grilled apples make the best summer dessert! Grill them with sugar and spices until tender, then serve them with “a la mode” with melty vanilla ice cream.


Ingredients

  • 2 firm tart-sweet apples (like Honey Crisp, Jonathon, Granny Smith, Gala, Fuji, etc)
  • 2 tablespoons butter (or coconut oil for vegan)
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • For serving: Vanilla ice cream or whipped cream (or vegan whipped cream)

Instructions

  1. Preheat a grill to medium-high heat (375 to 450 degrees).
  2. Cut the apples into 1/4” slices (no need to peel unless you want to). Place the apples on a large piece of aluminum foil. Top with the butter, cut into thin pats, sugar, cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg. Toss them with your fingers to combine. Seal the packet by placing another piece of foil on top and poke holes in it with a fork (to allow moisture to escape).
  3.  Grill over indirect heat for 20 to 25 minutes until the apples are fork tender. Top with ice cream and serve (either right on the foil, or place in bowls or on plates).

  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Grilled
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: Grilled apples, How to grill apples

More fruit desserts

Are you a fruit desserts person? (We are.) Here are some fruit dessert favorites that are also perfect for summer:

  • Best Apple Pie This really is the best apple pie recipe. It’s got flaky lattice pie crust and a tender, perfectly spiced apple filling. Prepare to be amazed!
  • Easy Apple Crumble This easy recipe fills a 9 x 13 inch pan with crunchy topping and a gingery apple filling.
  • The Best Peach Pie This really is the world’s best peach pie! Our prize winning family recipe features fresh peaches with a thick, creamy custard.
  • Easy Blueberry Crisp The crumble topping is perfectly crunchy and the filling is pure, tangy blueberry!
  • “Magic” Blueberry Cobbler It’s magic to watch the cobbler rise to the top!
  • Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp Sweet tart and nostalgic, sweetened with maple syrup and a crumbly topping of pure oats.

A Couple Cooks - Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

Any Fruit Galette

apricot and berry galette plum galette strawberry galettes cherry galette

Hello! This post is a little refresh of my very favorite recipe - Galettes! If you follow me on instagram you know that I am a galette evangelist. I think galettes are the very best and most fun dessert because they are so easy to make and adaptable, but my recipe was a little bit hidden in the archives so I am pulling it out into the spotlight with this easy to find post. You can use just about any fruit you like or a combination of fruits, and feel free to adjust the sugar to taste. Be free! Don’t worry about it too much! Have fun!

If you bake a galette make sure to tag me and #summerofgalettes on instagram and feel free to message me with any questions. I love seeing what you bake!

All Butter Pie Crust

All pie crust is made from the same basic ingredients: flour, fat, water, and salt. I am partial to an all-butter crust because I think it tastes the best. The key to flaky pie crust is to keep the ingredients nice and cold— especially the butter and water—and to work quickly and intentionally. I like to mix pie crust with my hands rather than a food processor or pastry blender because I can control the exact size and shape of the butter pieces for the flakiest results. Add a few teaspoons of sugar if you prefer a sweetened crust.

Ingredients

2 2⁄3 cups (340g) all purpose flour

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (255g) very cold unsalted butter

1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

8-10 tablespoons (120ml) ice water

Whisk the flour and salt together in a large bowl, cut the butter into 1⁄2-inch cubes, and add the apple cider vinegar to the ice water.

Working quickly, add the butter to the flour and toss to coat. Then use your fingers or the palms of your hands to press each cube of butter into a flat sheet. Keep tossing the butter in the flour as you go to ensure that each butter piece is coated with flour. The idea is to create flat, thin shards of butter that range from about the size of a dime to about the size of a quarter. If at any time the butter seems warm or soft, briefly refrigerate the bowl.

Sprinkle about 6 tablespoons of the icy cold vinegar-water mixture over the flour mixture. Use a gentle hand or wooden spoon to stir the water into the flour until just combined. If the dough seems dry, add more cold water a couple of teaspoons at a time. You have added enough water when you can pick up a handful of the dough and easily squeeze it together without it falling apart.

Press the dough together, then split it in half. Form each half into a disk, and wrap each disk in plastic wrap. Chill the dough for at least 2 hours before using, but preferably overnight. Keeps for up to three months in the freezer wrapped in a double layer of plastic wrap and a layer of foil. Thaw in the refrigerator before using.

VARIATIONS: For a rye variation, substitute 11⁄3 cups (175g) rye flour for an equal amount of the all purpose flour. For a spelt variation, substitute 11⁄3 cups (175g) spelt flour for an equal amount of the all purpose flour. You also may need a bit more water to bind the dough for these variations.

Any Fruit Galette

Yield: One 8-inch galette

You can use this formula with just about any seasonal fruit. For apples, pears, and stone fruit peel if desired then slice into 1/4-1/3-inch slices. Apricots (my fave!) can be gently torn in half or cut into quarters. Slice strawberries in halves or quarters if they are large. Rhubarb can be sliced into thin batons or 1/2-inch chunks. Feel free to experiment with combining your favorite fruits. I love stone fruit and berries together in the summer. Also, the apricot jam can be replaced with any jam or marmalade you like that will compliment the fruit you are using.

1 disc pie crust

3/4 pound (340g) fresh fruit

1/4 cup apricot jam

1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar, to taste

2 tablespoons flour

1/2 teaspoon lemon zest

seeds of one vanilla bean (optional)

pinch salt

1 egg, for egg wash

turbinado sugar and flaky salt for sprinkling

Arrange a rack in the oven in the lower third and preheat oven to 425ºF. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Combine the sugar vanilla bean seeds, lemon zest, flour and salt in a bowl. Add the fruit to a large bowl and sprinkle the sugar mixture over the top, but don’t stir quite yet.

On a lightly floured surface roll the dough into a rough circle between 1/8-1/4-inch thick and transfer it to a parchment lined baking sheet. Gently stir the fruit mixture until well combined.

Spread the jam onto the center of the dough, then pour the fruit into the center of the galette. Press gently to compact the fruit into an even layer. Fold the edges of the dough up and over the fruit and press the folds gently to seal. Refrigerate the formed galettes until the dough is very firm.

Brush the galette with egg wash, sprinkle with turbinado sugar and flaky salt if desired and bake until deep golden brown and bubbling, 45-55 minutes. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream.

nectarine galette

Crushed Raspberry and Strawberry Pavlova

We are still in a bit of an in between produce season, but the weather is warming up and the sun is out so I am craving fresh fruit desserts like it’s my job. I guess it kind of is…

crushed raspberry and strawberry pavlova | apt 2b baking co

We are still in a bit of an in between produce season, but the weather is warming up and the sun is out so I am craving fresh fruit desserts like it’s my job. I guess it kind of is my job…I love to make desserts like this pavlova because it is fairly low lift and aside from a low, slow bake in the oven for the meringue (which you can make the day before if it’s not too humid where you live) everything comes together in a few minutes.

The tart crushed raspberries provide some nice sauciness here and contrast well with sweet strawberries and the crisp, pillowy meringue. Make sure to use the best strawberries you can find for this dessert, and adjust the sugar to your personal tastes. In NYC we get some really nice organic berries from California but they are $$ so you may just want to bookmark this until they are in season locally where you live. The mini mint leaves are also totally optional, but they do add a nice freshness and beautiful pop of contrasting color.


Crushed Raspberry and Strawberry Pavlova

Crisp and chewy meringue, pillowy whipped cream, and sweet-tart berries are combined to make this super springy, and fairly simple dessert. Assemble just before serving for the best textural experience as the meringue will weep and melt as it sits.

Meringue

4 large egg whites

1 cup (200g) superfine sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon white vinegar

Berries

1 pound of the best strawberries you can find

1/2 cup fresh raspberries

2 teaspoons sugar

1/2 vanilla bean, seeds scraped

pinch salt

To Serve

1 cup (240ml) heavy cream 

1 tablespoon sugar

mint leaves

To make the meringue: Preheat the oven to 250ºF (130ºC/Gas Mark 1/2). Trace an 8-inch (20cm) circle onto a piece of parchment paper and flip it upside down on a baking sheet.

Stir the cornstarch and sugar together in a small bowl. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment or with a handheld electric mixer in a large bowl, beat the egg whites, salt, and cream of tartar on high speed until soft peaks form. With the mixer running, slowly add the sugar mixture about one tablespoon at a time until you have added all of the sugar and the egg whites are stiff and glossy about 7 minutes. Add the vanilla extract and vinegar and mix for 30 more seconds.

Dollop the meringue onto the prepared baking sheet and use an offset spatula to spread it evenly to the edges of the traced circle. Make a shallow indent in the center of the meringue which will hold all of the delicious toppings. Bake the meringue for 1-1 1/2 hours or until the outside looks dry and slightly creamy in color. Turn off the oven and prop the door ajar with a wooden spoon. Let the meringue cool completely in the oven. It should feel firm and crackly when you press it, but will be soft and marshmallowy in the center. When cooled, you should be able to gently peel it off of the parchment paper and place it on a serving platter or cake stand.  

To make the topping: Slice the strawberries in half if they are small, quarters if they are large. Combine the raspberries, sugar, vanilla bean seeds and a pinch of salt in a large bowl and crush the berries with a fork. Gently stir in the strawberries and let the fruit macerate for a few minutes. Taste and add a bit more sugar if desired, keeping in mind that the meringue will be quite sweet.

Whip the cream and sugar together to soft peaks. Top the cooled meringue with the whipped heavy cream, followed by the berries. Sprinkle mint leaves over the top and serve immediately.

One Bowl Passionfruit Cake with Fluffy Chocolate Frosting

190204_PassionfruitCake184.jpg Passionfruit Cake with Fluffy Chocolate Frosting | Apt 2b Baking Co Passionfruit Cake with Fluffy Chocolate Frosting | Apt 2b Baking Co Passionfruit Cake with Fluffy Chocolate Frosting | Apt 2b Baking Co

I love a cake that you can stir together in one bowl, and this passionfruit cake fits the bill. It is packed with passionfruit flavor and is mouth-puckering tart, but the *ahem generous* swoops of chocolate frosting balance it quite nicely. You could also add an additional 1/4 cup (50g) sugar for a sweeter cake, but I’m a fan of the contrast. If you aren’t a huge frosting fan you may want to hold a little back when you are topping the cake. The cake is also delicious - tart, floral, and tropical - on its own. If you’d prefer to skip the frosting all together, make a little bit of glaze made from passionfruit and confectioners sugar and drizzle it over the top instead.

Would you believe that I have misplaced my sprinkles? I’m not sure how it happened, but after my Christmas cookie bonanza I managed to hide ALL OF MY SPRINKLES from myself and I didn’t discover it until I went their normal storage spot to grab some to sprinkle this beaut. In the end it was a blessing because I crushed up a handful of dehydrated raspberries for decor instead and they added a nice tart punch to the topping.

p.s. I use a spoon, instead of an offset spatula, to get these deep swoops and swirls.


One Bowl Passion Fruit Cake with Fluffy Chocolate Frosting

makes one 8-inch square cake

Frosting recipe from Smitten Kitchen’s “I want chocolate cake cake”

I used Goya brand passionfruit puree for this cake which I can find easily at most of the supermarkets in my area. Its also very inexpensive and runs about 3 bucks for 7 ounces. You can certainly make your own puree or use a higher end brand, but I’m here to tell you that the inexpensive stuff works just fine. Choose your own adventure. Although, if you can find fresh passionfruit, a few of the seeds and pulp sprinkled over the top would make a beautiful, crunchy garnish. This cake tastes best the day that it is baked, but holds up for a couple of days at room temperature. If you use dehydrated fruit as a garnish it will soften as it sits.

For a less tart cake use 1 cup (200g) sugar.

One Bowl Passionfruit Cake

3/4 cup (150 grams) granulated sugar

2/3 cup passionfruit puree

1/3 cup (75g) sour cream

4 tablespoons (55g) melted unsalted butter

2 large eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1 1/4 cups (140g) cake flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

Chocolate Frosting

2 ounces (55 grams) unsweetened (or bittersweet) chocolate, melted and cooled

1 1/2 cups (180 grams) powdered sugar

1/2 cup (115 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 tablespoons milk, plus more if necessary

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

fat pinch of salt

Heat oven to 350ºF and butter and flour or spray an 8x8 inch baking pan with non-stick spray.

In a large bowl, whisk the sugar, passionfruit puree, sour cream, melted butter, eggs, vanilla extract, and salt until combined and smooth.

Combine the flour and baking powder in a fine mesh sieve and sift it into the large bowl. Whisk the batter until smooth and pour into the prepared pan. Slide the pan into the oven and bake until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean 20-25 minutes.

Cool the cake in the pan on a rack.

While the cake is cooling make the frosting.

Add all of the frosting ingredients to a large bowl and beat until smooth and fluffy, add a bit more milk if necessary. Alternately, Deb makes the frosting in a food processor.

Spread the frosting evenly over the cooled cake and decorate with a shit-ton of sprinkles. Enjoy immediately! This cake keeps is best the day it’s baked, but will keep for a couple of days, covered at room temperature. The dehydrated raspberries will soften over time.

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Fancy Jello Mold

Photo: Joe Lingeman for NYMAG

I don’t know about you guys, but I think jelly molds are ready for a comeback. Or are they already back? …

Photo:  Joe Lingeman  for  NYMAG

Photo: Joe Lingeman for NYMAG

I don’t know about you guys, but I think jelly molds are ready for a comeback. Or are they already back? I’ve seen them popping up here and there, and I have made a surprising number of them for photoshoots this year. I have totally fallen in love with their kitchy vibe and stunning colors. They can be totally delicious too! NYMag agrees and they asked me to create a gift worthy jelly mold for their annual gift guide which is on newsstands today. 

Impress your guests this holiday or bring one to a potluck and totally blow your friends minds. All you need is a fun shaped vessel – I like decorative cake pans (Nordicware makes great ones) but you could totally just use a regular glass or stainless mixing bowl, gelatin, juice, and some time. Have fun! Happy Holidays! 


Fancy Jelly Mold

I used Nordicware’s Charlotte Pan for this jelly, which is super cute and the little divots on top are the perfect shape to hold a cranberry or a raspberry. If you’d like to make a larger jelly mold you can double or triple this recipe. This jelly has some Framboise in it, but to make it more family friendly you can substitute cranberry juice for the Framboise. Pomegranate juice will also make a very tasty jelly, but it will be a bit more opaque and tart than the cranberry.

To suspend fruit in a larger mold, let the cranberry jelly mixture set until it is the texture of egg whites. At this point you can fold the fruit into the jelly and spoon it into the mold. The pictured mold uses cranberry juice, but you can also use pomegranate juice. The jelly will be slightly less clear and you will need to add 2 more tablespoons of sugar if using pomegranate juice.

For a clear jelly - Use white cranberry juice (or prosecco!) - every 3 cups of juice will need 2 envelopes of gelatin to set. You can also add a bit of clear liquor to the mix, like elderflower. Yum! If you’d like to add edible flowers, let the jelly set until it is the consistency of egg whites, pour it into the mold and place the flowers in the jelly one at a time. Make sure to arrange them to the prettiest side of the flowers is facing out because we all know this is about looks.

24 fresh cranberries

3 (1/4 ounce) envelopes unflavored powdered gelatin

3 1/2 cups cranberry juice cocktail or pomegranate juice

2 tablespoons sugar 

4 tablespoons Framboise

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk 

Food coloring (if desired)


Place 1 cranberry in each divot of the pan and set in the fridge to chill. 

Bloom the gelatin. In a small bowl stir the gelatin into 1 cup of the cranberry juice. Let sit for 5 minutes, until the gelatin is moistened.

Heat 1 cup cranberry juice and the sugar until simmering. Remove it from the heat and stir in the bloomed gelatin. Stir until the gelatin is completely dissolved, warm it gently over low heat if necessary to dissolve the gelatin, but do not boil. Add the remaining cranberry juice, lemon juice, and Framboise, and stir to combine.

Divide the mixture between 2 containers (a measuring cup with a spout works great) and stir the condensed milk into 1/2 of the gelatin mixture. Keep the gelatin at room temperature as you build the layers.

Pour a thin layer of the clear cranberry gelatin over the top of the chilled cranberries in the mold, just to cover the cranberries and the bottom of the mold. Chill until completely firm, about 30 minutes. After it has chilled, gently pour 1/2 of the condensed milk gelatin mixture over the top and refrigerate until completely firm, about 30 minutes. 

At this point, if you’d like the finished mold to be more colorful you can add food coloring to the remaining batches of gelatin. I tinted the bottom layer of the pictured mold with a tiny bit of orange.

Pour a layer of the cranberry gelatin over the chilled condensed milk gelatin and refrigerate until firm. Finish with the last layer of condensed milk gelatin and chill until completely firm, 4 hours or overnight. If the remaining gelatin hardens in between these steps you can very gently warm it over low heat. Do not boil it or it will not set.

To unmold, dip the gelatin mold in warm water for about 10 seconds. Place a serving platter over the top and invert. The gelatin should gently fall onto the plate. If it doesn’t quickly dip it in warm water again. Slice and serve!

Vegan White Chocolate Rhubarb Ripple Ice Cream

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Don't you love the way rhubarb ripple sounds? Vegan ice cream is a tricky beast. A lot of them rely on coconut milk and oil, which makes every flavor taste, well, like coconut. Except, there is a Van Leeuwen ice cream near my apartment and their vegan flavors never taste too coconutty – unless they are meant to. So I did a little (very little) sleuthing to figure out their secret. Turns out they have a cookbook and their secret is a combination of cashews for chew and cocoa butter and coconut for richness. The combination is not entirely neutral in flavor, you can still taste the individual componenets if you think about it, but the texture is amazingly smooth and rich. I decided to play up the cocoa butter (white chocolate!) flavor in this recipe which pairs beautifully with rhubarb and makes a delightfully springy plant based treat.  


There are a couple of spots left in my Fall Paris Workshop with Olaiya Land! We and I had such a long waitlist for our Paris workshop this Spring (thank you!) that we added another workshop this September 20-24. The format will be pretty much the same as the Spring version - think lots of pastry, delicious wine and cheese, market visits, prop shopping, and some solid photo, styling, and editing lessons in the city of light. This trip is for anyone looking to build their photography and styling skills (all levels welcome) and enjoy lots of beautiful food in one of the most amazing cities in the world. I am so excited to explore Paris in the fall, I am dreaming of the markets already! 

Details this way!

White Chocolate Rhubarb Ripple Ice Cream (Vegan)

makes about 1 quart

ice cream base adapted from Van Leeuwen Ice Cream

The key to the texture of this ice cream is to make sure the mixture is completely smooth and emulsified at every step so don't skip on the blending steps. Also, the ice cream base is wonderful on its own or with a bit of chopped chocolate folded in. 

Roasted Rhubarb Compote

1/2 (225g) pound thin rhubarb stalks

1/2 cup (50g) granulated sugar

juice of 1/2 lemon

Vegan White Chocolate Ice Cream

1/2 cup (75g) raw, unsalted cashews

1 cup (200g) granulated sugar

1/2 cup (100g) cocoa butter

3 tablespoons coconut oil

3/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1 1/4 cups full fat coconut milk

2 tablespoons vanilla extract

1 vanilla bean, seeds scraped

For the compote

Heat oven to 375ºF.

Slice the rhubarb into 2-3 inch lengths. Toss it in a baking dish with the sugar, and lemon juice. Roast until soft and juicy. Blend until smooth. Cool completely before using in the ice cream. It should be thick and jammy, if it seems liquidy cook it on the stovetop for a few minutes over medium heat to reduce.

For the ice cream

Cover the cashews with water and let soak overnight. Drain and rinse the cashews then add them to a blender with 1/2 cup water. Puree until completely smooth.

Combine the sugar with 1/4 cup water and cook over medium-high heat until the sugar is dissolved. Remove the pan from the heat then whisk in the cocoa butter, coconut oil, and salt until melted and smooth.

Add the sugar mixture, vanilla extract, and vanilla bean seeds into the blender and puree until smooth. Refrigerate until cooled completely then churn in an ice cream machine according to manufacturers instructions. Spoon 1/3 of the ice cream mixture into a freezer safe container, dollop 2 tablespoons of the rhubarb compote over the top and swirl with a knife, repeat with more ice cream and rhubarb until you have used all of the ice cream. You will have some rhubarb compote left over. Cover and freeze until firm, at least 4 hours.

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Pistachio Rosewater Cake with Labneh Frosting from Yogurt and a Fall Paris Workshop

Please excuse the phone photography here. I baked this pistachio rosewater cake for fun (imagine that) but so many folks over on instagram were interested in the recipe so I a…

pistachio rosewater cake from Yogurt

Please excuse the phone photography here. I baked this pistachio rosewater cake for fun (imagine that) but so many folks over on instagram were interested in the recipe so I am sharing it - along with a very exciting announcement!

Olaiya and I had such a long waitlist for our Paris workshop this Spring (thank you!) that we added another workshop this September 20-24. The format will be pretty much the same as the Spring version - think lots of pastry, delicious wine and cheese, market visits, prop shopping, and some solid photo, styling, and editing lessons in the city of light. This trip is for anyone looking to build their photography and styling skills (all levels welcome) and enjoy lots of beautiful food in one of the most amazing cities in the world. I am so excited to explore Paris in the fall, I am dreaming of the markets already! 


Click Here to Reserve Your Spot!

Now for the cake! This comes from Molly's Shortstack all about Yogurt. It is full of sweet and savory recipes using her (and my) favorite dairy product. I grew up eating yogurt as a mostly savory food, but it is awesome in all sorts of sweet preparations too - like cake. Molly uses Labneh, a very thick and tangy type of yogurt as frosting for this pleasantly rustic, but also kinda fancy pistachio cake. If you aren't a fan of rosewater, the cake would be just as good without it too.

Pistachio Rosewater Cake with Labneh Frosting

from Yogurt by Molly Yeh

makes one 9-inch cake

This cake is so simple and tasty, and super beautiful too! I reduced the sugar in the cake and frosting by about 1/3 to suit my personal tastes, and added some strawberries on top because strawberries, pistachio, and rose are a natural paring. Did you know strawberries and roses are in the same botanical family?! The recipe below is as it is printed in the book and when I made it I used 1 cup of sugar in the cake and 2/3 cup sugar in the frosting. 

Cake

1 1/2 cups roasted unsalted shelled pistachios

3/4 cup all purpose flour

1/2 cup almond meal

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 cup unsalted butter, softened

1 1/2 cups sugar

4 large eggs

zest of 1 lemon

1 teaspoon almond extract

2 tablespoons rosewater

Labneh Frosting

1 1/2 cups labneh

1 cup confectioners sugar

1 tablespoon rosewater

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

pinch kosher salt

Make the cake: Preheat the oven 350º. Grease the bottom of a 9-inch round cake pan with butter and line the bottom with parchment paper, set aside. Place the pistachios in a food processor and pulse until they’re coarsely chopped. Scoop out 2 tablespoons and set them aside for the topping. Blend the remaining pistachios until they’re finely ground. add the flour, almond meal and salt and pulse a few times to combine.

In a stand mixer fixed with a paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each, then add the lemon zest, almond extract and rosewater. Add the dry mixture ad mix until just combined. Pour the batter into the pan and use a spatula to smooth the top. Bake the cake until the top is golden and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean (begin checking for doneness at 50 minutes). Let the cake cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then turn it onto a wire rack to cool completely. 

Make the labneh frosting: In a medium bowl, stir together the labneh, sugar, rosewater, vanilla, and salt until the mixture is smooth. Cover the top of the cooled cake with the frosting. Top with the reserved pistachios and a few sprinkles of dried rose petals.