Apple Kuchen

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First things first…I was SO happy there has been a slight respite from the high heat and humidity we have been experiencing curtesy of some tropical storm down south of us.   For us Native Californians, we can’t handle this humidity and it is hard to get in the baking mood when you are literally melting!

My In-Laws were especially excited about this recipe…my husband too actually.  My Mother-in-Law immigrated from Austria when she was 18 years old, so this recipe brought back family memories of “kuchen”…which I am gathering, refers to a variety of German sweets. She said her mom must be dancing in heaven seeing me bake “kuchen”.  🙂

I started this recipe one afternoon and served it the following day.  There is some waiting time for chilling the dough and then also the baking time, which was listed as 60-70 minutes but in reality took close to 2 hours to get the knife to pull out somewhat cleanly.

The dough was easy to work with and smelled heavenly with the added lemon zest. Next time I wouldn’t be worried at all about fitting it into the pan…it is very forgiving as you patch and smooth.  The one thing I did underestimate is how long it takes to core, peal, and slice up 3 lbs of apples!  That is a lot of apples!

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Since I opted to leave out the rum soaked raisins, I went a little rogue and added some cinnamon to the apple mixture…I mean what is an apple dessert without a little cinnamon right??

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The only real problem I had with this recipe is the custard firming up while baking.  If I made this again, I would definitely tent the top so the apples didn’t brown so much.  I didn’t need to add the butter and broil because mine got so brown in the baking process. I did sprinkle the sugar on top though, to add some sweetness.  When I pulled the tart out of the oven, I still was not happy with the knife being fully clean but figured close to two hours just has to be good enough and hopefully it would firm up in the fridge overnight, which it did!!  Next time I just wouldn’t worry about that at all…seemed to work itself out just fine with a little chilling time.

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It is an impressive dessert when you present a mile high slice.  I heard an audible gasp of delight from one of my tasters and was so happy that the taste matched the appearance…because that isn’t always the case haha!

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Jam-Filled Sandwich Cookies

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I was surprised by these.

  • The dough wasn’t as fussy as I expected…quite easy actually.  I made the dough and let it chill overnight, baking the cookies the next morning.
  • I still had my blackberry jam that I used for the Florentine Squares so I went ahead and used that.
  • I used a mason jar as my cookie cutter.
  • The process of wetting the cookie and pressing the next layer on top went very smoothly.
  • Cooked up in the 17 minutes suggested.
  • Baked up 14 cookies out of the mix

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Seriously, easy….and should I add…LOVED be everyone!  My dad’s text went so far as to say he has extended his top 5 category to the top 10 as this cookie needs to be added to the top list….quite an endorsement of the recipe wouldn’t you say?!

I did add the dusting of confectioners sugar as suggested because you know it just elevates anything you dust upon! 🙂

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