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New Year’s Resolutions are bogus. They’re as bogus as things like the “As Seen on TV” products and 3-day miracle weight-loss plans, so I never make them. Plus, most resolutions aren’t kept anyhow.

But this year I decided to make a change and make a fun resolution. [Another different thing this year is I’ll actually be sleeping in my own bed on Dec. 31 for the first time in quite a few years.] Back to that resolution: starting tomorrow, I’m going to chronicle my year by taking one photo every day. [I should note that credit for this idea doesn’t come from me but instead from other people I’ve seen do this.] I’ll still be making my regular albums, but I’ll also be keeping one that has just one (hopefully) interesting picture for each day. I chose 2011 because I should be living in at least five cities this year (hopefully!) and visiting many more. My phone also has an awesome camera at the moment, which means I’ll always have a picture-taking device with me. I plan on uploading once a week but haven’t quite decided whether I’m going to make that album public yet – we’ll see. I’m hoping this works out 🙂

And of course, since there are festivities, I baked. For tonight’s New Year’s Eve party I made an Apple Cream Coffee Cake. Unfortunately my 3-D edible embellishments didn’t quite work how they were supposed to….and so I just placed the “2011” and the huge firework on top. I wish I had white chocolate and parchment paper in order to do them. They’re supposed to look a whole lot better: see instructions & pictures here.

But here’s the recipe anyway.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup sweetened applesauce (if unsweetened, add 1/2 cup of sugar)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1  1/2 cup Yoplait Apple Turnover yogurt, drained
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • 4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 medium apple – peeled, cored and thinly sliced

Directions:

  1. Mix together applesauce, eggs, vanilla extract.
  2. Add in flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
  3. Mix in the yogurt. [Before starting, drain the yogurt with cheesecloth to thicken it.]
  4. Pour half the batter into a greased Bundt pan. [If you have a tube pan with a removable bottom, that’s way better, but I unfortunately didn’t.]
  5. Top with apple slices.
  6. In a separate bowl, mix together the nuts, cinnamon and sugar and then sprinkle half of it onto top of the apple slices.
  7. Pour in the remaining batter and spread evenly.
  8. Top with the rest of the nut mixture.
  9. Bake at in a preheated over at 375 degrees F for 15 minutes. Then reduce heat to 350 degrees F and bake for another 35 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. Let cool before removing from pan and serving.

As always, I also made a couple of other things along with this cake, including a Rum Cranberry Applesauce Bundt Cake (this time I used a 9″ x 13″ pan instead), another Apple Bavarian Torte (didn’t drop it this time!), and some Seminary Muffins, as they’re called.

I think the Banana Coffee Nut Muffins I usually make are much better though.

Sunday I’ll be baking for the last time in a long time and probably making Orange Almond Biscotti, Cowboy Cookies, those aforementioned Banana Coffee Nut Muffins, and Chewy Coconut Cookies.

Happy New Year!

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