Apple Cider Bundt Cake

For most people, Fall is about pumpkins and apples. I love drinking a nice cup of apple cider along with eating piping hot fresh apple cider donuts. Our family buys a whole gallon of Honeycrisp apple cider (our favorite apple!) every Fall. This Apple Cider Bundt Cake is a great snack or dessert to enjoy during the Fall season especially with its warm spices and lovely apple taste. You can compliment a slice of apple cider cake with a warm cup of apple cider, hot chocolate, or tea. Warm large sweaters, a comfortable blanket, and a good book also makes a nice addition! 😊

Yield: 1 Large Bundt Cake
Time: 50 minutes

Ingredients

  • 8 TBSP unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 container of 4 oz apple sauce
  • 2 ½ cup flour
  • 1 ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1 cup apple cider

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  2. In a large bowl, mix the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg) together well and set aside.
  3. In an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy for about 2-3 minutes on medium-low speed. Add 1 egg at a time, beating well after each egg. Beat in vanilla extract and apple sauce.
  4. Alternate stirring in flour mixture and apple cider in 3 separate batches. Make sure all ingredients are well mixed.
  5. Pour batter into bundt pan. Bake for 35 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean from the center of the cake. Let the cake completely cool and enjoy!

Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookies with Almond Flour

I’ve been trying to eat less gluten by trying an elimination diet due to health reasons. It’s been a really difficult and slow process as I love baked goods! I’ve visited some gluten free bakeries in the area and tried to bake my own goods with almond flour. Unfortunately, it’s not the same as the fluffy bread I grew up with but I’m really trying to improve my health. The first gluten free recipe that I tried was chocolate chip cookies like the first recipe I posted on this website! It’s surprisingly fluffy for a cookie but I think it’s tastier than the baked goods I’ve tried at the gluten free bakeries and a lot cheaper!

Yield: 12 cookies
Time: 20 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 TBSP unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups almond flour
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ½ cup chocolate chips

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F with racks in the middle. Spread enough parchment paper to cover a baking tray.
  2. In an electric mixer, mix butter, sugar, egg, and vanilla extract until creamy.
  3. Add flour, baking soda, and salt and mix until well combined.
  4. Stir in chocolate chips.
  5. Scoop and form dough into 12 small balls and gently flatten.
  6. Bake the cookies for 9 minutes or until the edges are golden brown. Let it cool and enjoy!

Pumpkin Bread (updated)

I love making pumpkin bread especially around this time of the year where the Fall season starts to show itself with it’s slightly chilly weather and foliage. It’s the best time to wear warm sweaters, trench coats, long boots, and stockings! I love to fill my house with the warm smell of pumpkin and rich spices and also my family’s stomachs with delicious pumpkin bread!

This recipe is only slightly modified from my previous pumpkin bread recipe but I think it’s even tastier with vanilla and the extra crunch of pumpkin seeds! Pumpkin seeds are full of magnesium, fiber, antioxidants, and other beneficial nutrients. I love putting them on my daily oatmeal or baking! Stay warm with the love of your closest ones and Happy Fall! 😊

Yield: 2 large pumpkin breads
Time: 1 hour

Ingredients

  • 2 cups of unsweetened pumpkin puree
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 1 cup vegetable oil or olive oil
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 3 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 ½ tsp salt
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground nutmeg
  • ½ tsp ground cloves
  • ¼ tsp ground ginger
  • Pumpkin seeds (optional; to decorate)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F with racks in the middle. Spray 2 bread/cake pans with oil.
  2. In a large bowl, mix the wet ingredients (pumpkin puree, milk, oil, , eggs, and vanilla extract) together until well combined.
  3. In a separate bowl, mix the remaining ingredients (sugar, flour, salt, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and ginger) and stir these dry ingredients into the large bowl with the wet ingredients until well combined.
  4. Pour evenly into the two pans and optionally decorate with pumpkin seeds. Bake for 50 minutes or until a toothpick placed in the center comes out clean.
  5. If you’re using a large baking pan and the center doesn’t seem to cook well then try covering the pan with foil and bake for another 10-15 minutes or until the center is cooked.  

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

I think this is my first time making peanut butter chocolate chip cookies but they came out so well! It’s difficult just to have one and I’ve been gaining weight because of them! ☹ It’s a struggle because I enjoy eating them but I also want to lose the last 10 lb from my post-partum weight. I grew up eating peanut butter and jelly sandwiches from time to time but haven’t eaten peanut butter for years. I recently made fresh peanut butter using my Vitamix and it was delicious! You really can’t compare freshly made products from processed ones. I’ve been getting addicted ever since I made fresh peanut butter.

These cookies are a perfect way to use up some of your peanut butter at home. It’s a sweet indulgence that both kids and adults will enjoy! 😊

Full of peanut butter 🙂

Yield: 16 large cookies
Time: 35 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, room temp
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 1 cup peanut butter
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 4 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 ½ cups whole wheat or regular pastry flour
  • 2 cups white chocolate chips (or whatever flavor you prefer)
  • 2 tsp flaked salt

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F with racks in the middle.
  2. In an electric mixer, cream butter, sugar, peanut butter, and baking soda on low-medium speed until well mixed.
  3. Add vanilla extract and 2 large eggs and beat until light and fluffy.
  4. Add flour and mix on low speed until flour is incorporated.
  5. Add chocolate chips and mix on the lowest speed for a few seconds or until chocolate is well distributed in dough.
  6. Gently make golf sized balls from the dough and spread out the balls so they’re not too close to each other on the baking tray.
  7. Chill dough in fridge for at least 15 minutes. This step is optional and helps cookies keep their shape.
  8. Distribute flaked salt evenly on top of the cookies for that extra crunch.
  9. Bake cookies for 13 minutes or until the edges are golden brown.
  10. An additional optional step is to gently press down on the cookies with the bottom of a glass cup for a chewy texture.
  11. Let the cookies cool and enjoy!

Mitarashi & Kinako Dango

Dango is one of my favorite Japanese desserts! It is delectable with matcha or jasmine green tea during the afternoon or after a meal. I try to treasure every bite and become a little sad when I’ve reached the last dango on the bamboo skewer. ☹

The best dango I’ve tried was at the Shibuya station in Tokyo. It was so soft and delicious with the right amount of sweetness! It spoiled me to the point that I couldn’t eat supermarket dango ever again! Luckily, I can make my own dango at home whenever the craving hits. There are different toppings or sauce to dango such as mitarashi (soy sauce), kinako (toasted soybean powder), goma (sesame seeds), anko (red bean paste), zunda (edamame paste), and more! My favorite flavors are the mitarashi and zunda! I’ve put up the mitarashi and kinako dango recipe below. I hope you enjoy this special Japanese sweet! 😊

Mitarashi dango
Kinako dango

Yield: 15 dango pieces
Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients

  • ½ cup shiratamako (sweet rice flour)
  • ½ cup joshinko (Japanese rice flour)
  • 2 tsp brown sugar
  • 1 cup warm water
  • Bamboo skewers
  • Kinako powder (optional topping)

Ingredients for mitarashi sauce (sweet soy sauce)

  • 1 TBSP soy sauce
  • 1 TBSP mirin
  • ¼ cup water
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1 TBSP potato starch + 1 TBSP water

Instructions

  1. Mix shiratamako, joshinko, and sugar in a bowl. Gradually add warm water and gently knead into a dough.
  2. Form 15 small dango balls from the dough.
  3. Fill and boil a pot of water that can generously cover the dango. Slowly add each dango to the boiling water and let it cook until the dango float on top. Cook for 1 minute longer.
  4. Move the dango balls into a bowl with iced water. Drain well and put 3 dango pieces on one bamboo skewer.
  5. In a small pot, combine the soy sauce, mirin, water, and brown sugar. Stir well and let it boil. Meanwhile, mix potato starch and 1 TBSP of water until well combined in a separate bowl. Slowly add the potato starch slurry into the pot of sauce. Stir until well combined and take off heat when the sauce thickens. Let sauce cool.
  6. Top dango with either sweet soy sauce or kinako powder.