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Yuletide Cakes





Apple Gingerbread Upside Down Cake

1 c brown sugar
3 TB sugar
4 tart, firm fleshed apples
3Tb butter

Melt butter in baking pan and spread brown sugar evenly over bottom of pan; pare and core apples then slice thinly and spread in an overlapping pattern over the brown sugar and butter mixture set aside


Gingerbread Mixture

3/4 c sugar
1/2 c shortening
1 egg
3/4 c molasses
2 1/2 c flour
1 1/2tsp soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ginger
1/2 tsp allspice
1/2tsp salt
1 C hot water

Cream shortening and add sugar gradually. Cream until light and fluffy beat egg and add together with the molasses. Mix and sift together dry ingredients and add alternately with hot water, beating well after each addition; spread over apple slices and bake in 350* oven for about 50 min; serve hot.

SOURCE: unknown



Buttermilk Spice Cake

2 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 Tbsp cinnamon
1 tsp allspice
1 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp cloves
1/2 tsp ginger
3/4 cup margarine or butter (1 1/2 sticks) at room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 large egg
1/2 cup molasses
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup raisins (optional)
1/2 cup walnuts (optional)

Prepare the pans by greasing and flouring them. Preheat oven to 350, position rack in lower third of oven. Sift together the flour, baking soda, salt and spices and set aside. In a large bowl of an electric mixer, cream together margarine or butter and sugar until well blended and light. Bet in the egg and molasses. Alternately add flour mixture and buttermilk, beating after each addition beginning and ending with flour. Sit in raisins and walnuts if using them. Spread batter in prepared pan(s) and bake as directed, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean and the top springs back when lightly touched. Cool cake on a wire rack in the baking pans for 5 minutes. If you are using it as a layer cake invert cake layers on wire rack and let cool completely, before frosting and filling. For a single layer cake let cool before frosting and serve from the pan.

FROSTING
8 ounces cream cheese at room temperature
8 Tbsp butter
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
4 cups sifted confectioners sugar

In an electric mixer blend the cream cheese and butter together until very smooth and creamy. Beat in the vanilla. Gradually add the sifted sugar, beating until smooth. The longer you beat the softer the frosting will become. When soft enough to be spread, frost the cake. Refrigerate in hot weather.

SOURCE: unknown



Candy Cane Cheesecake

1 1/3 c Chocolate Cookie Crumbs
2 tb Sugar
1/4 c Butter or margarine
1 1/2 c Sour Cream
1/2 c Sugar
3 Eggs
1 tb Flour
2 ts Vanilla
1/4 ts Peppermint extract
3 8oz packages of Cream Cheese
2 tb Butter
2/3 c Crushed peppermint candy

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Combine first 3 ingredients and press into a 9-inch springform pan. Blend sour cream, sugar, eggs, flour and both extracts until smooth. Add cream cheese and 2 T butter. Stir in crushed candy. Pour into crust and bake on lowest rack of oven for 50-60 minutes or until firm. Allow to cool (top may crack) and refrigerate overnight. Remove from pan and serve. Top with sweetened whip cream and garnish with candy cane if desired.

SOURCE: unknown



Cranberry Upside-Down Cake

Topping

2 1/2 cups fresh cranberries
1/4 cup ( 1/2 stick) butter
3/4 cup light brown sugar

Cake Batter

1/3 cup vegetable shortening
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 eggs
1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup milk

Whipped Cream

1 cup heavy whipping cream
3 or 4 tablespoons granulated sugar

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Making the Cake Topping: Use a skillet with a 2-quart capacity. If your skillet has a wooden or inflammable handle, wrap it in several layers of aluminum foil. Put the cranberries in a colander and rinse under cold running water. Remove any soft or shriveled cranberries and discard. Shake the colander to get rid of excess water. Set aside. Melt the butter in the skillet over medium heat. Don't walk away, stand and watch, giving a stir often. This only takes a couple of minutes. As soon as the butter is melted, stir in the brown sugar. Continue to cook, stirring until the sugar melts and is bubbling a little. Remove from the burner and add the cranberries, spreading them in a single layer in the sauce. Set the skillet aside while you prepare the batter. Making the Cake Batter: Put the shortening into a mixing bowl and add the sugar. Using the back of a large spoon, press and smooth the shortening and sugar together. Keep blending until the sugar and shortening are a single mass. (If you have an electric mixer, this can be done quickly.) Add the vanilla and eggs. Beat the mixture until it is all one color and smooth (again, an electric mixer does this quickly, or a hand rotary beater will smooth out lumps). Combine the flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl. Stir with a fork to blend. Add the flour mixture to the creamed mixture, along with the milk, beating until the batter is smooth and free of lumps. Again, use a large spoon or a hand rotary beater. Spread the batter evenly over the cranberries. Bake for about 30 minutes, but check the cake for doneness after 25 minutes by inserting a straw or toothpick into the center of the cake. If it comes out clean, the cake is done. Remove from the oven and let sit for 10 minutes, then put a large serving plate over the skillet and turn the skillet upside down. The cake will drop onto the platter. This is a lovely cake served slightly warm with whipped cream.

Whipped Cream: Combine the cream and 3 tablespoons of the sugar in a bowl. Beat, using a hand rotary beater or electric mixer, only until soft peaks form. Taste the whipped cream for sweetness and add more sugar if you like. Serve with the cake.

Serves 6 to 8.

SOURCE:http://seadrift.tripod.com/christmasdesserts.html



Cheesecake with Cranberry Jewel Topping

1 1/2 c Vanilla wafers, crushed
1/4 c Sugar
6 tb Butter; melted

Filling:

1/2 c Whipping cream
1 pk Vanilla powder
1 1/2 lb Cream cheese; room temp.
1 c Sugar
1 pn Salt
4 lg Eggs

Topping:

12 oz Fresh or frozen cranberries
3/4 c Sugar
1/2 c Cranberry juice concentrate
1/4 c Water

Preheat oven to 350 F.

Crust:
Wrap the bottom and outsides of 9-inch springform pan with aluminum foil. Lightly butter inside of pan and set aside. Combine cookie crumbs, sugar and butter. Press mixture onto bottom and halfway up sides of prepared springform pan. Bake for 10 minutes on center rack of preheated oven. Set aside, but do not turn off oven.

Filling Using electric mixer, blend together all ingredients. Add eggs and mix just until well-combined. Pour filling into prepared crust. Bake until center is just set, about 50 minutes. Refrigerate cake immediately, and leave until thoroughly chilled (at least 6 hours or overnight).

Topping: Combine all ingredients in heavy medium saucepan. Stir over medium heat until sugar is dissolved. Bring to a boil and continue cooking for 3 minutes. Strain mixture through a sieve set over a lage bowl, pressing firmly with the back of a spoon to force as much of the liquid through sieve as possible. Spoon warm topping evenly over cold cake. Refrigerate until topping is set, at least 2 hours. (Can be prepared 1 day before serving. Store covered in refrigerator.) To serve, pipe rosettes of whipped cream around edges of cake. Garnish with whole cranberries.

SOURCE: unknown



Frozen Peppermint Cheesecake

1 1/2 c Chocolate wafer crumbs
1/4 c Sugar
1/4 c Butter or margarine
8 oz Package cream cheese, soft
14 oz Can sweetened condensed milk
1 c Crushed hard peppermint candy
3 drops Liquid red food coloring
2 c Whipping cream, whipped

Combine first three ingredients, firmly press onto bottom and 1 inch up sides of a 9 inch springform pan. Chill. Beat cream cheese at high speed with an electric mixer until fluffy. Add condensed milk, peppermint candy, and food coloring. Beat well. Fold in whipped cream. Pour into prepared pan. Cover and freeze until firm. Garnish with whipped cream, crushed and/or whole peppermint candy, if desired.

SOURCE: unknown



Holiday Eggnog Cheesecake

1 c Graham cracker crumbs
1/4 t Ground nutmeg
1 ea Env. unflavored gelatin
8 oz Cream cheese, softened
1 c Eggnog
1/4 c Sugar
1/4 c Margarine, melted
1/4 c Cold water
1/4 c Sugar
1 c Whipping cream, whipped

Combine crumbs, sugar, nutmeg and margarine; press onto bottom of 9-inch springform pan. Soften gelatin in water; stir over low heat until dissolved. Combine cream cheese and sugar, at medium speed on electric mixer until well blended. Gradually add gelatin and eggnog, mixing until blended. Chill until slightly thickened; fold in whipped cream. Pour over crust; chill until firm. VARIATION: Ingrease sugar to 1/3 c. Substitute milk for eggnog. Add 1 t vanilla and 3/4 t rum extract. Continue as directed.

SOURCE: unknown



Holiday Delight Cheesecake

1 c Graham cracker crumbs
3 tb Sugar
2 tb Margarine, melted
3 pk Fat-free Cream Cheese (8oz)
3/4 c Sugar or Splenda
2 tb Flour
3 tb Lemon juice
3 tb Cholesterol-free egg product
1 ct Non-fat lemon yogurt
Lite whipped topping
1 cn Cherry pie filling

Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Combine graham cracker crumbs, sugar and margarine; mix well. Pat onto bottom of 9" or 10" springform pan. Set aside. Beat cream cheese, sugar and flour together until light, fluffy and smooth. Gradually add lemon juice and egg product; beat well. Add lemon yogurt and mix thoroughly. Pour over prepared crust. Loosely place aluminum foil over springform pan. Bake at 350 degrees F 60 to 70 minutes or until center of cake is set. Gently run tip of knife between cake and edge of pan. Cool to room temperature before removing from pan. Chill. Served topped with cherry pie filling and whipped topping.

SOURCE: unknown



Pumpkin Ginger Cheesecake

Crust

4 tablespoon butter
3/4 cup graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup crushed gingersnaps
1 tablespoon brown sugar (or your favorite substitute)
1 teaspoon cinnamon

Filling

1 cup heavy cream, chilled
24 oz cream cheese, softened
1 1/2 cups sugar
3 large eggs
1 1/2 cups mashed pumpkin
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon powdered ginger
3/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 cup pecan halves

Preheat the oven to 325 F or 300 F in convection oven.

To make the crust
Place the butter in a small saucepan and melt over moderateheat. Mix the graham cracker crumbs, gingersnaps, brown sugar and cinnamon in a medium bowl. Add the melted butter and mix together with a fork. Line bottom and side of 10" springform pan with parchment or wax paper. Spray with nonstick pan spray. Press the crumb mixture into the bottom.

Filling

Pour the heavy cream into a medium bowl and beat just until soft peaks form. Refrigerate. Beat the cream cheese (in large bowl) with an electric mixer until fluffy. Gradually add the sugar, beating well. Add the eggs one at a time, and beat the mixture until it is fluffy and pale. Stir in the pumpkin, cinnamon, ginger and cloves. Remove the whipped cream from the refrigerator and whisk lightly to reblend. Using a spatula or flat spoon, fold the whipped cream into the cream cheese-pumpkin mixture. Pour the mixture into the prepared crust. Wrap one continuous sheet of aluminum foil around the springform pan and press firmly. Put wrapped pan in a baking pan and fill with hot water halfway up the spring from pan. Bake for 60-70 minutes.Cool the cheesecake to room temperature, then refrigerate for at least 3 hours to chill thoroughly. Remove the sides of the springform pan. Just before serving, place the pecan halves on top of the cheesecake, in a ring around the edges, to garnish.

SOURCE: unknown



Triple Chocolate and Vanilla Cheesecake

1 1/2 cups crushed creme filled chocolate sandwich cookies (about 18 cookies)
3 tablespoons margarine or butter, melted
4 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1 (14 ounce) can Sweetened Condensed Milk (NOT evaporated milk)
4 eggs
1/3 cup unsifted flour
1 tablespoon vanilla (yes, tablespoon)
2 (1 ounce) squares semi-sweet chocolate, melted
Chocolate Glaze (recipe below)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine crumbs and margarine; press firmly on bottom of 9 inch springform pan. In large mixer bowl, beat cheese until fluffy. Gradually beat in sweetened condensed milk until smooth. Add eggs, flour and vanilla; mix well. Divide batter in half. Add melted chocolate to one half of batter; mix well. Pour into prepared pan. Top evenly with vanilla batter. Bake 50 to 55 minutes or until center springs back when lightly touched. Cool. Top with Chocolate Glaze. Chill.

Chocolate Glaze:
In small saucepan, over low heat, melt 2 (1 ounce) squares semi-sweet chocolate with 1/4 cup whipping cream. Cook and stir until thickened and smooth. Remove from heat; spread over cheesecake. Makes about 1/2 cup.

SOURCE: unknown



Triple Citrus Cheesecake

Crust:
1C.graham cracker crumbs
1/3C.firmly packed brown sugar
1/4C(1/2 stick) margarine,melted

Filling:
4 pkg.(8 oz.each) cream cheese,softened
1C. sugar
2 Tbsp.flour
1 tsp.vanilla
1 Tbsp. each fresh lemon juice,lime juice & orange juice
1 tsp. each grated lemon peel,lime peel & orange peel
4 eggs

Crust:
mix crumbs,brown sugar & butter.Press onto bottom of 9-inch springform pan(use bottom of straight-sided glass to evenly press crumb mixtire onto bottom of pan) Bake at 325* for 10 minutes if using silver springform pan(bake at 300* for 10 min. if using dark,non-stick pan)

Filling:
mix cream cheese,sugar,flour,vanilla with elec. mixer on medium speed until well blended.Blend in juices & peel.Add eggs,one at a time,mixing on low speed after each addition just until blended.Pour over crust. Bake at 325* for 1hr,5min. or until center is almost set (bake at 300* for 1hr,5min if using dark,non-stick pan). Run knife around rim of pan to loosen cake,cool before removing rim of pan.Refrigerate at least 4 hrs.

Serves: 12

SOURCE: unknown



Sweet Potato Marble Cheesecake

1 large or 2 small sweet potatoes (about 1 lb.)
Kosher salt and pepper

For Crust
1-1/2 cups gingersnap cookie crumbs
1/2 cup (about 2 oz) finely chopped pecans
1/3 cup butter, melted
For Filling

2 (8-oz) packages cream cheese, room temperature
3/4 cup sugar, divided
1 tbsp. vanilla extract
3 eggs
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. nutmeg

Bake potatoes in a 350 degree F. oven until very tender, about 1 to 1-1/2 hours, depending on potato size. When cool enough to handle, scrape all potato flesh out into the bowl of a food processor. Process until puree is creamy. Season with kosher salt and pepper; set aside to cool.

For Crust:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Mix crumbs, pecans and butter in medium bowl until well blended. Press mixture onto bottom and 1-1/2 inches up sides of 9-inch-diameter springform pan. Bake crust until set, about 8 minutes. Cool completely in pan on rack. Maintain oven temperature.

For Filling:
Measure 1 cup puree; reserve remainder for another use. Beat cream cheese, 1/2 cup sugar and vanilla in large bowl until blended. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating well and scraping down sides of bowl after each addition. Transfer 1 cup cream cheese filling to small bowl. Add remaining 1/4 cup sugar, sweet potato puree, cinnamon and nutmeg to filling in large bowl and mix until smooth. Pour half of sweet potato filling into crust. Drizzle with half of plain filling. Swirl knife through batters to create marbled effect. Repeat layering with remaining sweet potato filling, then remaining plain filling. Swirl batters with knife again.
Bake cake until filling is set, about 45 minutes. Cool. Refrigerate overnight. (Can be made 2 days ahead. Keep refrigerated.) Using small sharp knife, cut around cake and release pan sides. Cut into wedges and serve cold.

Note: You can make the puree ahead of time. Cover surface directly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 3-5 days. You can use more or less of the puree to your preference. The remaining puree makes a great base for soup or a nice stir in for muffins, cookies, cake or pie filling.

SOURCE: unknown



Brazil Nut Fruitcake

1/2 cup butter or margarine
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp almond extract
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
3/4 cup chopped Brazil nuts
2 cups candied cherries
3/4 cup golden raisins
1/2 cup chopped pecans
3 egg whites
1/2 cup milk

Cream butter and sugar until light. Blend in baking powder, salt and almond extract. Blend 1/4 cup of the flour with the nuts, fruit and raisins. Whip egg whites till stiff and set aside. Blend the remaining flour into the creamed mixture alternately with the milk. Fold together the creamed mixture, fruit mixture, and whipped egg whites till the mixture is evenly blended. Grease a 9 1/2 by 5 1/4 inch loaf pan. Line with wax paper. Turn cake mixture into pan. Bake at 275F for 2 1/2 hours or till cake tests done when a wooden skewer is inserted in the center. For a moist cake have a shallow pan of water in the oven while baking.

source: Margaret



Cranberry-Pear Cake

1/2 cup butter
4 eggs
2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1-1/4 cups granulated sugar
1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla
1/4 cup buttermilk or milk
3 cups peeled and coarsely chopped pears and/or apples
1 cup cranberries, coarsely chopped
Powdered sugar
Fresh kumquats (optional)
Rose leaves (optional)

1. Let butter and eggs stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. In a small mixing bowl stir together flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside. In a large mixing bowl beat butter with an electric mixer on medium speed for 30 seconds. Gradually add granulated sugar to butter, 2 tablespoons at a time, beating on medum to high speed for 6 minutes total. Add vanilla. Add eggs, one at a time, beating for 1 minute after each addition and scraping the bowl often.

2. Beat in buttermilk or milk. Gradually add flour mixture to butter mixture, beating on low to medium speed just until combined. Fold in pears and/or apples; fold in cranberries. Spoon batter into a greased and floured 10-inch fluted tube pan, 10-inch springform pan, or 13x9x2-inch baking pan; spread evenly.

3. Bake in a 350 degree F oven for 50 to 55 minutes for tube pan, 1 to 1-1/4 hours for springform pan, or 40 to 45 minutes for the 13x9x2-inch pan or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool on wire rack for 15 minutes. Remove sides of springform pan, or remove cake from tube pan, or leave cake in the baking pan. Cool thoroughly on a wire rack. Sprinkle with powdered sugar. If desired, garnish with kumquats and rose leaves.

Makes 12 to 16 servings.

*Note: If you use rose leaves for a garnish, wash them first and check to see that they have been grown without pesticides. Make-Ahead Tip: Up to 1 day ahead, make and bake cake. Cool, but do not sift with powdered sugar. Cover and store and room temperature. Just before serving, sift with powdered sugar.



Edinburgh Gingerbread

4c. flour
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp ground ginger
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 1/2 tsp mixed spice (made up of equal parts of cloves, cinnamon, ginger & nutmeg)
1 1/2 tsp powdered cloves
1c. pitted dates, chopped coarse
1 c. shelled walnuts
1 c. butter
1c. molasses
1c. dark brown sugar
4 lg eggs, beaten
1-2Tb warm milk

Preheat oven to 350*. Sift flour, salt & spices into mixing bowl. Add dates & walnuts to flour. In a small saucepan over low heat, melt butter, molasses & sugar. Pour gradually into flour mixture, stirring constantly. Add eggs, dissolve soda in a TB of warm milk and add to mixture. Stir well with a spoon, careful not to crush the fruit, adding a bit more milk if needed to make a mixture that will just drop from the spoon but is not too soft. Spoon into well-greased 8"x8"x2" square baking pan lined with parchment paper. Spread evenly and bake 20 minutes then lower temp. to 300* and continue another 2 hrs or until knife comes out clean. Cool on wire rack then strip off parchment. When cold, store in air tight container

**Best if stored for a week or two to improve flavor



Eggnog Cherry Bundt Cake

1 cup butter, softened
1 cup sour cream
2 cups sugar
2 large eggs
3 cups flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 & 1/2 cups eggnog
1/4 cup dark rum or brandy
1 cup dark canned cherries

On low speed, cream butter, sugar and sour cream until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs. Sift together dry ingredients. Combine eggnog and rum. Alternately add dry mix and eggnog mix to butter and sugar until well mixed. Batter will be very thick! Pour half batter into greased and floured bundt pan. Spread cherries on top-towards middle of cake avoiding both sides (want to form a ring of cherries in center of each slice). Top with remaining half of batter. Bake at 325F for 90 minutes. Cake is done when golden brown and sides pull away from pan. Do not underbake.



Gingerbread with Caramel Topping

1-1/2 cups water
1 cup molasses
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 stick butter, softened
1 cup light brown sugar
1 large egg
2-1/2 cups flour
1 Tablespoon baking powder
2 teaspoons ginger
1-1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
pinch of nutmeg
pinch of cloves

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9 x 13 inch baking pan. Combine water, molasses and baking soda in a saucepan; bring to a boil and remove from the heat. In a bowl, cream butter and brown sugar; beat in egg. Sift remaining dry ingredients together into a bowl. Fold dry ingredients and molasses mixture into the creamed butter and mix slowly. Pour batter into pan and bake for 30 minutes. Check for doneness by inserting a toothpick in the center of cake. Toothpick should come out slightly wet.

caramel sauce

1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 Tablespoons butter, softened at room temperature

Place sugar and water in small saucepan over high heat and cook, stirring, until the sugar is dissolved. Then cook without stirring, just washing down the side of the pan with a pastry brush dipped in water; do this on medium heat until sauce has turned color of caramel (approximately 15 minutes). Take syrup off heat. Let cool slightly, then slowly add cream and butter. Be careful that hot syrup does not spatter. Stir until smooth.



Gingerbread Yule Log

3 eggs, separated
1/2 cup molasses
1 tbsp. butter/margarine (melted)
1/4 cup sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp. baking powder
3/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. each of cinnamon, ginger and cloves
1/8 tsp. salt

Spiced Cream Filling:

1 1/2 cups whipping cream
1/3 cup confectioners sugar
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
Additional cinnamon optional

In a mixing bowl, beat yolks on high until thickened, about 3 minutes. Beat in molasses and butter. In another bowl, beat whites until foamy; gradually add sugar, beating until soft peaks form. Fold into yolk mixture. Combine dry ingredients. Gently fold into egg mixture until well mixed. Spread in a greased and floured (wax paper lined) 15x10 inch x 1 inch baking pan. Bake at 375 for 9-12 minutes or until cake springs back when lightly touched. Turn onto a linen towel dusted with confectioners sugar. Peel off paper and roll cake up in towel, starting at short side. Cool on wire rack. Meanwhile, beat the first five filling ingredients in a mixing bowl until soft peaks form. Unroll cake; spread with half the filling. Roll up. Place on serving plate. Spread remaining filling over cake. Sprinkle with cinnamon if desired. Yield: 10 servings.



Old-Fashioned Cider-Gingerbread Bundt Cake

2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon ground ginger
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup blackstrap molasses
3/4 cup apple cider
1/2 cup apple butter
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 egg white
1-1/3 cups peeled, shredded Granny Smith apple, about 1 apple
Cooking spray
1 tablespoon powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour and next 5 ingredients in a bowl; beat at medium speed of a mixer for 2 minutes. Add flour mixture; beat until well-blended. Add apple; beat well. Pour batter into a 12-cup Bundt pan coated with cooking spray. Bake cake at 350 degrees for 55 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes; invert cake onto a wire rack, and cool completely. Sift powdered sugar over cake.



Orange Spice Upside-Down Cake

1/4 cup butter
2/3 cup dark brown sugar
2 large oranges
Dried cranberries or cherries
1 teaspoon freshly grated orange peel

BATTER

1/3 cup vegetable shortening
2/3 cup molasses
1 large egg
1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 cup buttermilk

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Melt the butter in a 9-inch cake pan. Remove the pan from the heat and cover the melted butter with the brown sugar. Peel the oranges and slice them about 1-inch thick. Remove the white pith in the center of each slice and remove any pits. Arrange the slices, cutting into smaller shapes if desired, in decorative fashion on top of the sugar. Put the dried cranberries or cherries in the center of each slice. Sprinkle with grated orange peel.

FOR THE BATTER: - Cream the vegetable shortening and molasses in the bowl of an electric mixer set on medium speed. Add the egg, flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, nutmeg, ginger, and buttermilk. Beat the ingredients 2 to 3 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl occasionally, until the batter is smooth. Spoon the batter over the fruit. Bake about 25 to 30 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean. Invert immediately onto a serving plate but do not remove the pan. Let stand 8 to 10 minutes, remove pan and let cake cool completely.

Makes 8 servings



Spice Cake with Cardamom-Coffee Icing

Cake:
2 1/4 c. unbleached flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground cloves
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
1/2 tsp. ground cardamom
1 stick butter
1/2 c. dark brown sugar
1 c. sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1 1/4 c. buttermilk

Cardamom-Coffee Icing:
1/4 c. milk
1 Tbsp. espresso powder
1 tsp. ground cardamom
1 tsp. vanilla
2 sticks butter
3/4 c. confectioners' sugar

To make the cake:

Sift the dry ingredients. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugars, then add eggs one at a time then vanilla, mixing until light and fluffy (about 5 minutes), scraping the sides of the bowl while mixing. Beat in dry ingredients alternating with the buttermilk, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Beat until just smooth, about a minute. Pour into two 8-inch (or a 13x9) greased and floured pans and bake in a preheated 350F oven for about 30-35 minutes for layers, 40-45 minutes for the oblong cake, or until cake tests for doneness. Remove from oven and cool on racks about 10 minutes, then remove from pans and finish cooling on racks.

To make the icing:
Heat the milk and dissolve the espresso powder in it, then allow it to cool. Beat togethere the remaining ingredients, then add the coffee/milk mixture and continue beating until fluffy. Recipe taken from: Savoring the Seasons of the Northern Heartland by Beth Dooley and Lucia Watson.



Yule Fruitcakes

For the Simple Syrup:
2 cups sugar
2 cups water
Strips of zest of 2 lemons (about 3 tablespoons)
Juice of 2 lemons (about 1/4 cup)

For the Cake:
1 pound of combination of dried fruits, such as blueberries, cranberries, cherries, raisins, and chopped apricots
1 pound unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 cups sugar
4 ounces almond paste
8 large eggs
1 cup Grand Marnier or other orange-flavored liqueur
4 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon fresh grated nutmeg
1 cup silvered blanched almonds
1 cup pecans pieces
1 cup walnut pieces
1/2 cup bourbon

Make a simple syrup by combining the sugar and water in a medium-size heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the lemon zest and juice and bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Boil for 2 minutes and remove from the heat.

Combine the dried fruits together in a large mixing bowl. Pour the simple syrup over them, toss to coat, and let steep for 5 minutes. Strain and reserve the syrup.

Creme the butter, sugar, and almond paste together in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle at low speed, occasionally scraping down the sides of the bowl. Beat until the mixture is fluffy and smooth, about 2 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing in between each addition on low speed and scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary. Add 1/2 cup of the Grand Marnier and mix to incorporate. Combine the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a medium-size mixing bowl and blend well. Add this mixture 1/2 cup at a time to the butter mixture with the mixer on low speed, each time mixing until smooth, about 2 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as necessary. The batter will be thick. Add the warm fruit and all the nuts a little at a time, mixing well. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and the paddle. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease twelve 1 pound loaf pans. Spoon about 1 cup of the batter into each pan. Bake until golden and the tops spring back when touched, about 45 minutes (rearranging them after 25 minutes if necessary to brown evenly). Cool for 10 minutes in the pans. Remove cakes from the pans and cool completely on wire racks. Wrap each cake in a layer of cheesecloth. Store in plastic storage bags until they are slightly stale, 3 to 4 days. Combine the reserved simple syrup with the remaining 1/2 cup Grand Marnier and the bourbon. Without removing the cheesecloth, make tiny holes with a toothpick randomly on the top of each cake. Pour 2 tablespoons of the syrup over the top of each cake once every 2 to 3 days until all of the syrup is used. Let the cakes age for up to 3 weeks before eating.

Makes around 12 cakes



  


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