On Apple Trees, Cake, and Planning Ahead for Panic Attacks

Not sure if I’ve mentioned this before, but I have an apple tree.

Here, look upon my apple tree:

Apple tree 1

Beautiful, is it not?

Better yet, it provides a marvelous view from my kitchen sink.

Here, look upon the view from my kitchen sink:

kitchen window mn

The window screen makes it a little fuzzy, but you get the idea. It’s a damn fine view.

For comparison sake, here was the view from my former kitchen sink:

Kitchen window az

You’re probably wondering why I bothered taking a picture of a brick wall.

About three months ago, give or take a day, I got a wee bit concerned about our move from Arizona to Minnesota.

I started thinking that at some future point — say, in February when it’s 30 below here and 70 in Phoenix — I’ll think to myself, “HOLY FREAKIN’ COW, WHAT HAVE I DONE?!”

So in preparation for that event, I took pictures of all the things in our Phoenix home that drove me nuts. Hence, the picture of a brick wall.

(Just curious, what’s that say about a person who plans ahead for panic attacks?)

I also have shots of my kids’ rooms (cleaning is not their strong suit), our “music room” (it was more a catch-all room), and – my personal favorite — a stack of dirty dishes one of my kids left by the empty sink.

The question is, will looking at a picture of dirty dishes ease the pain of moving away from my kids?

Um… yeah. It has. (I’m a monster.)

Anyway, back to the apples. I’ve no idea what kind they are except they are wonderful for baking. (Score!) Also, I’ve come to a better understanding of why commercial growers use chemicals. Up close and personal, my apples are not pretty.

Tell me, would you pay good money for these apples?

applesNeither would I. Yet they’re delicious in your morning oatmeal with a bit of cinnamon and brown sugar.

So far I’ve made a couple pies, muffins, several bowls of oatmeal, and a wonderful cake that I will share with you in a moment.

(*gasp* She’s actually sharing a recipe?!)

This weekend I plan on picking the entire tree; I believe it’s time and the bugs have had enough of a feast. I foresee a batch of applesauce and apple butter in my future.

But first, cake!

This cooler weather (54° this morning) put me in the mood for baking. I scoured my cookbooks for recipes using apples and found no less than five for cake, all a tad different. I took what I liked best from each (more apples and spices here, less oil and eggs there, ooh a glaze!) and came up with this one. It turned out marvelous and it works either as a coffee cake or a dessert.

By the way, the town in which I now live has the best coffee. Really! It’s a downtown shop called Reality Roasters. Their beans might cost a little more, but dang, they’re worth it.

Just the thing for this cake. ☕

Apple Cake with Butterscotch Glaze

  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print
Apple cake

This is a rich tasting cake but without a lot of oil and eggs; Perfect for a cool autumn morning with a cup of coffee or as a dessert with a scoop of ice cream.

Ingredients

  • 1 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 4 cups diced apples, unpeeled (about 5 or 6 baking apples)
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda*
  • Granola or rolled oats for topping (I used Full Circle’s oats & honey granola)
  • Glaze (see below)

Mix together sugar, oil, eggs and apples. In separate bowl mix together flour, spices, salt, and baking soda. Add to the apple mixture, stir well and pour into a greased 13 x 9″ baking pan. Sprinkle with about 1/2 cup of granola or rolled oats. Bake at 350° for 50 to 60 minutes, until cake tester comes out clean. Prepare glaze while cake cools.

Butterscotch Glaze: In small saucepan over medium heat, stir together 2 Tablespoons butter, 3 Tablespoons brown sugar and 2 Tablespoons heavy cream or half-n-half. Bring to a boil and stir for one minute. Remove from heat and stir in 1 teaspoon vanilla extract. Let cool slightly and drizzle on top of cake.

Can serve warm or cooled. 🍂

*I know it sounds like a lot, but the two teaspoons of baking soda is correct. 🙂

 

Author: CJ Hartwell

After spending most of her life in Phoenix, Arizona, CJ Hartwell moved to the middle of Minnesota. Is she nuts? Probably. For updates on her sanity, click on the link to follow by email.

31 thoughts on “On Apple Trees, Cake, and Planning Ahead for Panic Attacks”

  1. I know what kind of apples: Red. We have green apples at my house. and here’s the required apple joke: What’s worse than biting into an apple and finding a worm?

    Biting into an apple and finding half a worm …

    Thank you, thank you, my work is done here. Enjoy the view. 😉

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I love that you took pictures of what you hated from your house in AZ! Wish I had thought of that when I moved from Wisconsin to Colorado 😦 I am so going to make this cake soon. Looks absolutely scrumptious!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Dear CJ
    I am getting an” Apple Tree Complex” now. I wish I had one to look at from my kitchen sink. Alas, I have but a ledge on which there is usually a stray cat sitting, peering at me to ask when I am coming out to feed it. I wish my diet would allow me a piece of cake but again, I can only drool.
    Susie

    Liked by 2 people

  4. My apples look yuck on the outside, but they are certainly delcious inside (they are Golden Delicious). I never do anything to the tree (except occasionally prune it for shape) and it fruits prolifically. I can’t eat them all so i figure it is only right that the bird (well, native hens actually) do get their share.
    I also have a self-seeded “thought it was a crabapple-but it’s not” apple tree. It is always loaded with small scungy looking apples, but again, the flesh it clean and snow white when you cut them. I only actually tasted one last autumn (on a dare) to discover that they were edible!!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Oh, a Golden Delicious would be wonderful, not only for fine out-of-hand eating, but they make the best pie (in my opinion). We have a crabapple in the front yard, unfortunately it’s right by the driveway so it creates a mess. I haven’t done anything with them except sweep them up.
      Also, side note: I’m in awe of your willingness to eat something on a dare. You are a brave woman. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  5. We didn’t take photos, but we had long discussions about what we may miss about our old house so that we were over them before we moved! And our new home came with 3 different apple trees 😊. They’re only young but they’ve gone mad. We’ve had to provide one with crutches! I will be trying your recipe. Especially as they’re all ingredients I already have. This was such a lovely read, loved the touches of humour in it.

    Liked by 2 people

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