Sweet Things
Wordless Wednesday (Pretty in Purple)

Just right for a cold winter's day ...

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... baked apples with dried fruit & honey!

It was a perfect day to bake something warm and wonderful - it was so very cold, and quite windy as well! I found a recipe for baked apples in a magazine at our pediatrician's office last week - for the life of me I can't remember what it was called, but I wrote down the instructions in my planner so I could try it at home.

I started with six good-sized apples (a mix of Pink Lady and Golden Delicious), as well as dried cherries and golden raisins. The recipe also called for honey and orange juice concentrate.

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First, I washed and cored the apples, and pricked the tops lightly with a fork. Then I placed the apples in muffin cups brushed with canola oil. I also placed a small piece of parchment paper beneath the apple, in the bottom of each compartment.

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I filled each apple with 1 tablespoon dried fruit, 1 teaspoon frozen orange juice concentrate and 1 teaspoon honey.

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They baked for 30 minutes at 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

(Note to self: next time, place the muffin pan on a cookie sheet to collect spills!)

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The boys were downstairs building Legos (enjoying the last bit of their lunch break) as the apples baked. Before too long I heard a voice call ...

"Mom? What's that smell that smells so good?"

:)

So we all sat down to a baked apple before we resumed our lessons for the day. These made a very nice snack, but I think they would also be delicious served at breakfast or even as a side dish at supper. (They'd be perfect with pork chops!)

Now, before I go, I thought I'd answer a few food questions that have been left for me recently ...

Lecia asked for recipes for the chocolate-chip cookie cake and the raspberry danish from brunch. Well, first of all, the danish was store-bought, Lecia! I had wanted to make a scratch coffee cake, but didn't have the time between Mass and brunch, so store-bought danish made do. ;)

The chocolate chip cookie cake was all homemade, however. Here's the recipe:

Chocolate Chip Heart Cookie

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar

1 egg

3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray pan with Pam. In a large bowl, cream butter with sugars. Add egg and vanilla and mix well. Stir in flour, baking soda and salt; mix well. Stir in chocolate chips. Spread dough into prepared pan with spatula. (I sprayed my hands and following manufacturer's directions I pressed the dough just short of the edges of the pan.) 

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Bake 15-20 minutes or until light golden brown. Cool on rack 5 minutes. Remove from pan. Cool before cutting.

(Recipe from the Wilton Company)

We had this for dessert last night and it was SO yummy - a very nice, cakey texture, with a small amount of - but just enough - chocolate taste.

And Kristie asked me to expand on this week's long-day, "easy" dinner menus.

Here's what I have planned:

M - Valentine's Supper

T - baked ziti, salad and rolls

W - (frozen) chicken pie, butternut squash and roasted potatoes ... possibly, apple crisp for dessert (I have a lot of apples to use up.)

Th - hot dogs, veggies with ranch dip and tater puffs

F - pizza/leftovers 

Well, the timer on the pasta is ringing so I'd best wrap up. Thanks as always for stopping by ...

See you again very soon!

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