Tag Archives: cinnamon

Better Place

Apple Crisp

 apple filling

Hello August!!!  Hello Monday!!! Hello Secret Recipe Club reveal day!!!!  This month I was partnered with the incredible Andrea of Adventures in all things Food – which has got to be one of the best blog names EVER.   Andrea’s blog has a bit of everything, from vegetarian goodies to desserts to crafts fit for the entire family.  I’ve been a sweet kick lately so I went straight to her dessert section, trying to avoid eye contact with her peanut butter icing because OMGoodness chocolate donuts with PEANUT BUTTER – nom nom nom.  However, in the end I was won over by her fall ready Apple Crisp.  I’m normally a summer girl but I’m ready for cooler temperatures!   Didn’t even make any changes to the recipe – it’s perfect already!  While Andrea didn’t specify what type of apple, I went with Pink Ladies since they offer a great combination of sweet and tart.  Plus they hold up well when it comes to baking.

Apple Crisp


6 cups apple, peeled and sliced (about 3 large)

1/4 c. unsweetened apple juice

2 Tbsp. brown sugar

1 Tbsp. cinnamon

1 tsp. nutmeg

1 c. flour

1/2 c. brown sugar

1 tsp. cinnamon

1 stick unsalted butter, cold

1/2 cup old fashioned oatmeal


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and butter up a 9x9 baking dish
  2. Put the sliced apples into a large bowl buttered then add the apple juice along with the cinnamon and nutmeg. Toss well then pour into the baking dish
  3. In a separate bowl mix combine the flour, brown sugar, and remaining cinnamon. Cut in the butter with a pastry blender or with two knives.
  4. Stir in the oats and sprinkle this over the apples.
  5. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes or until the apples are bubbling and topping is golden brown. Allow to set for 5 minutes then Serve!!!!

I also went with old fashioned oats, tho quick oats would also work well.  I just prefer a crisper crisp!  For a vegan option, switch out the butter for earth balance or a similar spread – easy peasy.   Since there are 5 Mondays in August – there will be another secret recipe club post at the end of the month so hope to see everyone then (if not sooner).

Brought to Life

Vegan Sugar Cookies 


Many moons ago, or about 5yrs ago, I found an incredible vegan sugar recipe.  This past year I went to look for it again and could not locate it!  So I decided to come up with my own recipe based on a “normal” sugar cookie recipe and what I know about vegan cookie.  One of the biggest issues I’ve had with vegan baking is the missing butter taste as well as the not always awesome aftertaste some vegan “butters” offer.  With that I decided to add a bit of cinnamon, not enough to cross into snickerdoodles territory but enough to add a bit of something to the recipe.  I also added a touch of cream of tartar in order to counter the melting point of vegan “butter” and keep the cookies from spreading too much – another problem I commonly have.  I wasn’t going for a super fluffy cookie but I didn’t want them to be as crispy as a rolled cookie.

Brought to Life

Serves: makes 48 cookies


1 cup vegan "butter", softened

1 1/2 cups white sugar

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/2 tbsp cinnamon

1/2 cup applesauce (no sugar added)

1 1/2 tsp vanilla extra

1/2 tsp salt

2 1/2 cups flour

1 tsp baking soda


  1. Preheat oven to 375
  2. Cream together the sugar, cinnamon, and butter for 10 minutes until nice and fluffy. Add in the applesauce, vanilla extract, and salt and blend for another 3 minutes.
  3. Stir together the flour and baking soda and slowly mix in with the wet ingredients until just mixed.
  4. (Optional: place in fridge for one hour)
  5. Form dough into walnut size balls and drop onto cookie sheet leaving space for the cookies to spread.
  6. Bake for 11 minutes, allow to cool for 5 minutes on the cookie sheet and then move to a cooling rack.

These cookies were a huge holiday hit!  Husband enjoyed them so much he had a hard time believing they were vegan, which is the ultimate compliment in his case.  For a real treat, form the dough and then freeze in a plastic cookie “tin” and bake when you’re getting a craving for something sweet.

Just like a Fire

Apple Dumplings

Apple Dumpling

Welcome to JUNE’s edition of the secret recipe club!  I know that lately my blog has been very neglected but it’s been for a very, very, very good reason.  I mentioned a stomach bug last month but that wasn’t exactly the truth – the actual issue is something called hyperemsis gravidium.  Many of you might already be familiar with this, either through personal experience or in following HRH Duchess of Cambridge.  Basically,  I’m (finally) pregnant!!!! Our last round of fertility treatment was successful and I’m now just over 14wks pregnant.  The first 7 weeks were fantastic, free of symptoms and all of that, but then it hit will a force that I never could have expected and with that the diagnosis of HG and two trips to L&D for rehydration.  This all resulted in a very neglected blog as I was living off of broth and rice but I’m now on some awesome medication and starting to get the energy to get back in the kitchen.  Perfect timing for the SRC!!!  This month I was partnered with Lisa of Cook Lisa Cook – a blog I’m familiar with thanks to previous SRC events.  I picked out sooooo many incredible recipes from her blog including Mashed Cauliflower, Peach Cake, and Corn Souffle but in the end her simple and delicious sounding Apple Dumplings won the day.  I couldn’t resist a recipe that featured apples AND croissant dough and I knew my husband and co-workers would have similar feelings.

I had to make one small change to the recipe, swapping out the nuts for some granola that way there would still be a bit of a crunch.   As a bonus, if you use Pillsbury crescent rolls and sub the unsalted butter with Smart Balance the recipe is vegan 😀

Just like a Fire

Serves 4-6


1 stick butter

1/2 tsp vanilla

3/4 cups sugar

1 tube refrigerated crescent rolls

1 granny smith apples

1/2 can frozen apple juice concentrate

1/4 cup water

ground cinnamon

1/2 cup granola


  1. Preheat oven to 350 and grease an 8x8 inch pan.
  2. Slice you apple in order to make at least 8 slices (assuming standard crescent roll container).
  3. Wrap each slice in a crescent dough triangle, folding the tip over as needed, and place in the pan.
  4. In a small sauce pan (or bowl if using microwave), melt the butter and then lightly stir in the sugar and vanilla. Pour over top of the wrapped apples.
  5. Spread the frozen apple concentrate over the wrapped apples and pour in the water.
  6. Sprinkle with cinnamon and granola.
  7. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until golden brown. Serve and enjoy!

I’ll be taking July off from the SRC, due to craziness with life right now I don’t want to risk not being able to give the right amount of attention to whatever blog I get. However, I will be participating in an awesome blog link-up over the next week so lots of delicious summer time recipes are on the way!!!

Treats you Kind

Pumpkin Streusel Muffin


The other weekend I hosted a few friends for a boozy brunch – followed by a Hunger Games Marathon.  I needed something that was quick and easy, just in case the boozy part started before the brunch part.  So I checked out a few of my favorite cookbooks in hopes of a spark, and it worked!  While a coffee cake was out of the question, I decided I could easily adapt the recipe to work for over-sized muffin tins – and that they needed a bit of pumpkin.  This is loosely based on the “quick coffee cake” recipe from Joy of Cooking, just without the egg and smaller amounts of milk plus pumpkin and vegan – so might be more accurate to say this is inspired by that recipe but whatever!

Pumpkin Streusel Muffin

Serves: Yields 6 large muffins


1 1/2 cup all purpose flour

1/2 cup white sugar

1/2 cup brown sugar

2 tsps baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp salt

1 cup pumpkin puree

1/3 cup almond milk

Streusel Topping:

2 tbsp dairy-free butter (I used earth balance, as had a guest who can't do soy)

2 tbsp brown sugar

1 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp nutmeg

1/4 tsp cloves


  1. Preheat oven to 375
  2. Mix together the dry ingredients and set aside. In a large bowl stir the almond milk and pumpkin puree until creamy.
  3. Quickly add the dry ingredients in to the pumpkin mixture and stir until just mixed. Set Aside
  4. Lightly grease 6 large muffin tins, or use muffin liners. Spook the mixture until cups are 2/3 full.
  5. In a small bowl use two knives, or a pastry cutter, to cut together the streusel ingedients. Once mixture resembles bread crumbs, sprinkle on top of the muffin dough.
  6. Bake for 28 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out cleanly.
  7. Remove to a cooling rack for at least 5 minutes. Then Serve and Enjoy!

There were enjoyed with some fake bacon, turkey bacon, buttermilk pancakes, and lots of champagne based fruity drinks.  Most likely will go all out next year when the final movie comes out, and might actually do something “on theme” at that point – but there is something to be said about random carbs and champagne.

In my Brain

Banana Waffles


When life makes you bananas – make a banana split!  Or at least so said my boss last week after a way more stressful than it needed to be week.  While I’m not much of a banana split kind of girl (milkshakes, all the way) I did get a bit stuck on the idea of using bananas.  The next day a coworker gave me a perfectly brown banana that was perfect for mashing and doing something with – so I knew the universe, or at least my colleagues, were telling me I needed to do something with bananas.  Since I was gifted the banana on a Friday it was in perfect shape for breakfast the next morning and after a quarter toss to decide between pancakes and waffles, I got to work!  I used the base waffle recipe in my Joy of Cooking book, and just swapped out the eggs for the bananas.

Banana Waffles

Serves: Yields 6 waffles


1 1/4 cup mashed banana (about 2 normal sized bananas)

1 cup almond milk

1 cup flour

3 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 tbsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp nutmeg


  1. Mix together the banana and milk until smooth and set aside. Sift together the flour and baking powder in a large bowl. Stir in the salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg and then make a well in the middle.
  2. Preheat waffle oven
  3. Quickly whisk in the wet ingredients, and mix until just blended
  4. Spoon mixture into waffle oven based on directions. Continue until done - then Enjoy and Serve!


Our machine takes a 1/3 cup batter for each waffle


Joe topped his with standard maple syrup while I went for some local Pear Butter, which worked perfectly with the cinnamon in the muffins.  I know there are people out there who teased me for asking for a waffle maker on our wedding registry but I am so so so thankful that I did!  There are few things as simple and basic as a good waffle – which is why I’m sending this over to /r/52weeksofcooking for their rustic challenge.  It might not be the easiest thing to make on a camping trip, but a waffle in the morning with a cup of coffee (by which I mean Iced Caramel Latte) is pure heaven!