Apple Cake with Hot Cream Sauce

This weekend has been pretty amazing.  I had the chance to catch up on lost time with old friends which was really exciting, and tonight I celebrated Easter with a delicious dinner at my parents’ house.  I brought this Apple Cake with Hot Cream Sauce for dessert and everyone gobbled it up in no time.  The decadent cream sauce is what takes this cake from delicious to extraordinary.  Happy Easter everyone!

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Slice-and-Bake Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

As I was beginning to make these scrumptious Oatmeal Raisin Cookies I was reminded of my first cookie baking experience back when I was 8 years old.  My neighborhood friend, Elizabeth was over and we decided to make up a batch of Oatmeal Raisin Cookies to snack on using the recipe from the inside of the lid of Quaker Oats.  The recipe had two columns of ingredients and as we set out to make them the two of us weren’t paying attention to who was plopping what into the bowl.  It wasn’t until later did we realize we put in maybe half of the ingredients…that was our first error.  The dough was moist, however, and would hold together in a cookie dough ball shape.  We thought we were professional chefs!  Into the oven the little cookie balls went, and I had the novel idea to lock the oven door shut so no heat could escape.  To my surprise when I tried to open the lock as the alarm was sounding it wouldn’t budge.  Frantically we called my mother over and she informed us that when the oven gets locked it goes into a self-cleaning mode, raising the temperature to an extraordinarily high degree for an extended period of time.  All we could do is wait and watch our cookies burn.  Once the oven was done self-cleaning we removed the cookie sheet and examined the evidence.  When trying to lift the cookies from the pan they crumbled into a granola-like consistency.  My mom was daring enough to taste these failed cookies and to all of our surprise it was delicious!  We topped vanilla ice cream with the granola and enjoyed our little snack that we had created.  Professional chefs without a doubt.

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Orange-Scented Olive Oil Cake

Today is my first day of Spring Break!  And something very exciting just happened – as I was sitting here typing up this post I saw a huge bald eagle flying right outside my living room window!  His wingspan must have been at least 4 feet wide, definitely the largest bird I have ever seen.  It was amazing to watch him fly spreading those remarkable wings out and soaring right in front of my eyes.  I ran for my camera but he was gone by the time I got back to the window.  But back to the cake!  This Sicilian dessert is moist and dense, a huge hit for any crowd.

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Broccoli Cheese Stuffed Sweet Potatoes

My dearest friend Lauren has requested that I make something gluten free, but more specifically she has requested broccoli stuffed potatoes.  I have elaborated upon the recipe she provided me and created something similar yet excitingly different with a secret ingredient!  The best part of making this dish was when I asked my fiance what he thought was in the cheese sauce.  He replied, “milk, cream, flour, butter…”  He sure was surprised when I told him that none of those ingredients are in it!   I hope you like it Lauren!

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Tuscan Kale Salad

Today was a gorgeous 42 degrees with the sun shining bright and a gentle warm breeze.  It felt wonderful after these past few icy cold days we’ve had.  It was nice to be able to get out and go for a long walk through town.  I think everyone else had the same idea, too!  This Tuscan Kale Salad was inspired by the warmth and in anticipation of summer days.

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