Friday, December 7, 2012

In Place of TWD... Pumpkin Roll and Apple Spice Bars

This week Gretchen of Canela & Comino chose Lenox Almond Biscotti for the Tuesdays with Dorie recipe of the week. Unfortunately, neither my DH or I love... or dare I say even like biscotti so I decided to skip out on this week's choice. Sorry Gretchen! Please check out Gretchen's blog and the TWD blog though to see how others fared!

I couldn't not bake anything this week though so I decided to try some fall recipes that have been sitting in my stack of recipes to try. On the top of my pile was a pumpkin roll. I simply used the recipe from I had never made pumpkin roll before though and was curious to see how easy it would be to actually roll this thing up! Once I checked out the VeryBestBaking website though, I noticed a how-to video at the bottom of the recipe. The video is step-by-step and really explained things well. Once I finished watching it, I got to work on my own pumpkin roll and it was indeed super easy to make.

I made the roll in the evening and then set it in the fridge overnight. The next morning, I sliced a piece for myself and my mother-in-law who was visiting and she definitely liked it. In fact, after one bite, she said, "This is what you will be bringing to Thanksgiving dinner this year, okay?" :-) I enjoyed it too, especially with a nice warm cup of chai tea. Mmmm!

My next fall dessert to try was Katie's Apple Spice Cookie Bars. See her blog, Good Things Catered for this and many other fabulous recipes! To save some time though, here is her recipe as written in her blog:

Apple Spice Cookie Bars


2 c. plus 2 Tbsp all purpose flour

2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp salt

2 tsp ground cinnamon

1/8 tsp nutmeg

1/8 tsp allspice

small pinch ground cloves

1/2 c. butter, melted

1 c. packed brown sugar

1 c. white sugar

2 eggs

1 Tbsp vanilla extract

2 apples, cored and diced (a little less than 2 c.)

cinnamon sugar for sprinkling


-Preheat oven to 350
degrees and line 9x13 pan with foil and baking spray.
-In medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and cloves.

-Whisk to combine well and set aside.

-In bowl of stand mixer, combine sugars and butter and beat on medium high until light and fluffy, about 1 minute.

-Add eggs, one at a time, beating well to combine.

-Add vanilla extract and beat to combine.

-Turn mixer on slow and fold in flour mixture a little at a time until just combined.

-Fold in apples.

-Spread mixture evenly into prepared pan and sprinkle top generously with cinnamon sugar.

-Place in oven and bake until cooked through, when top slightly bounces back to the touch, about 30 minutes.

-Remove from oven and let cool completely before removing from pan, cutting and serving. (bars will be very soft)

I followed the recipe exactly as stated. The only thing that different was the apple -- in her ingredients, she has listed 2 apples (a little less than 2 cups). I bought two large apples and it turned out that one apple diced equaled a little under 2 cups, so I just used one apple. Anyhow, I followed the rest of the recipe as is. I hate to bake things too long as I HATE baked goods that are hard (hence my dislike for biscotti,) so I took out the Apple Spice Cookie Bars right at the 30 minute mark. I let them cool and then started slicing them. They seemed especially soft, but Katie indicated in the recipe that they're supposed to be super soft. I was still concerned though that maybe they were a little undercooked. My DH tried them and assured me they were fine. Phew! I popped them in the fridge and took them to work the next morning along with some pumpkin roll. (BTW, I'm happy to report that the apple spice bars set up nicely after cooling completely in the fridge.) The verdict? Both were a hit! Some people loved the pumpkin roll best while others loved the apple spice bars, but either way, both were well loved! I'll definitely make both of these again soon!

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