21 November 2012

Fall Baking

Fall is that time of year when I both really want to diet so whatever hibernation weight I put on won't be as noticeable, and when I really want to bake. There are just so many great fall dessert possibilities! I meant to blog about one such recipe last fall and then forgot to take pictures and figured there was little point. But I made it again a few weeks ago and remembered the pictures this time!

I love all fruit but there's nothing better than apples in the fall

One of my many uncles owns a working apple, pear, and peach orchard so we always had free fruit when I was growing up. When I moved I was horrified to discover how much produce costs! It was the bushel fulls of both apples and pears one of my cousins brought to my parents' that inspired my recipe from last year. I've always loved crumble recipes. When I was a kid my mom always made more of the crumble than necessary because I'd eat it out of the bowel. While I was visiting Michigan last winter I wanted to make an apple crumble but when I saw the Bosc pears my cousins brought over I thought, hey why not apple pear?

Jazzed up crumble mixture

Apples, pears, pecans, oh my!
It was a good idea. Apple pear pecan crumble was what I ate for breakfast just about the entire week I was there.And not so bad for breakfast either. I mean, there's fruit and oatmeal so it practically is a breakfast food.

Ready to bake!

With fresh whipped cream, mmmm...
Of course you cannot have fall without pumpkin! Not just for Thanksgiving! In fact I'm not doing much of anything with pumpkin for Thanksgiving so I decided to make some pumpkin cookies. And since I'm far, far too lazy to actually bake a pumpkin, scrape it out, and puree it, I used canned pumpkin; Libby brand.

Libby, the only name in canned pumpkin

More jazzed up spices!
Every time I make these I have to call my mom for the recipe. I'm glad she at least wrote it down when she did. It's actually a recipe from Libby, but good luck finding it on the label now! Now it's all pumpkin pie, pie crust, and pumpkin cream cheese logs.

Alternate the dry and wet ingredients

Mmm, nummy
These are very cake-like cookies so when making the batter you have to alternate mixing the dry and wet ingredients like you would a cake. They also take a little longer to bake than your standard cookie. And don't try stacking them on top of each other unless you like multiple layered cookies!

Ready for the oven!
There's just something about fall baking that's so much homier than summer baking. I guess it's the way my apartment gets extra warm, especially if I forget to turn off the oven for seven hours like I did a few weeks ago...and of course fall ingredients and spices like cinnamon, clove, and nutmeg just smell so inviting and warm.

Mmmm cookies!

Even more cookies!
Eating warm baked goods doesn't hurt either!

Apple Pear Crumble
  • 2 tart-ish apples
  • 3 pears (I like Bosc) 
  • pecans
  • 1 1/2 C brown sugar
  • 1 C flour
  • 1 C oatmeal
  • 2/3 C melted butter
  • cinnamon
  • nutmeg
  • clove
Peel and chop the apples and pears then mix them with the pecans and set aside.

In a separate bowel, mix the dry ingredients then pour the melted butter over everything and mix until the entire mixture is wet. Press roughly 2/3 of the mixture into a greased 9x13 pan, add the fruit mix, and top with remaining crumble.

Bake at 350 for 30-ish minutes and/or until the crumbly bits on top turn a nice golden brown. Serve with whipped cream or ice cream. Cinnamon ice cream makes a nice addition!

Pumpkin Cookies
  • 2 C flour
  • 1 C oatmeal
  • 1 t baking soda
  • 1 t cinnamon
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1 C butter, room temp
  • 1 C brown sugar
  • 1 C sugar
  • 1 egg slightly beaten
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 1 C pureed pumpkin
First mix the five dry ingredients in a bowel. The recipe, as you see, only calls for cinnamon but I think that's kind of bogus. I added not only nutmeg and clove but also ground vanilla bean. It's up to you what you want to do here. You could even use pumpkin pie spice if you've mind to.

Cream together the butter and sugars, then add the egg and vanilla. Then, alternating the dry ingredients with the pumpkin (beginning and ending with the dry).

Bake at 350 for, my mom said 20-25 minutes but in my gas oven they really only needed 18. 

And enjoy!

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