Claudia and Hans Make Stuff

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Grandma’s Apple Crisp (German Apfelkuchen)

A family recipe for sure! Not sure how long it has been in the family, but my mom learned how to make this apple crisp from her mom. It became one of my favorite treats when I was growing up. I still remember stealing apple peelings and crumblies for the topping.

It is very simple to make, delicious, and surprisingly low in calories. This recipe always has high demand for pot lucks, not just International pot lucks. Believe me, you will want to try this recipe. It is easier to make than pie, but rivals pie in taste.

Ingredients for the dough (Makes a large baking sheet):
250 g flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
50 g sugar, white granulated sugar works best
50 g softened butter
1-2 eggs
milk, if needed

Ingredients for the topping:
5-7 medium apples, I prefer apples that are sweet-sour in taste, such as Jonagold
ground cinnamon, optional
Streusel (crumbly topping)

Ingredients for the crumbly topping:
100-150 g butter
1 part flour
1 part sugar, white granulated sugar works best

1. Mix all of the ingredients for the dough together and knead through. Use a little bit of milk, if the dough feels dry and does not stick together. The dough should be soft and easy to handle. Roll the dough on greased baking sheet.
2. Wash, peel, core, and slice the apples. Arrange the apples in layers on the dough. Once all the apple slices are covering the dough, sprinkle the apples with a little bit of cinnamon (optional). Meanwhile heat oven to 350 degrees.
3. To make the crumbly topping: Melt the butter in a sauce pan. Once fully melted, pour in a heat-proof bowl that contains 1 part flour and one part sugar. I would start with 1 cup flour and 1 cup sugar. Mix the melted butter in with a fork. Add equal portions of flour and sugar as needed to achieve desired Streusel consistency. I prefer the Streusel to be medium-sized (rather than tiny, too much flour and sugar, or too large, too little flour and sugar).
4. Evenly spread the Streusel over the apples. Bake the apple crisp for 15-20 minutes, or until dough is no longer gooey. Dough and Streusel should look golden and slightly browned.
5. Serve with home-made whipped cream or vanilla ice cream. Yum.

Note: Stores well in refrigerator for a couple of days. However, the Streusel and dough will lose their crunchiness as the apples continue to give off moisture.

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First try apple pie

While my favorite pie is raspberry pie, Hans loves apple pie. I had been planning to try to bake apple pie for a while now and it seemed only fitting to bake it yesterday. Apparently Utah observes a State holiday called Pie and Beer Day (I mean Pioneer Day).
So we enjoyed a beer from our favorite brewery with dinner ( and I decided to bake my first-ever apple pie.

I had always used a dry pie crust baking mix but was determined to bake the pie from scratch this time. Another requirement, I wanted the pie to be somewhat lower in calories than the traditional recipes. So I spent quite some time online reading several recipes and creating my own.

Once we enjoy the pie later today I will provide more feedback =)
My next try will have doublecrust though, so that the apples cook in their own juice.
YES!!! Definitely making this recipes again but NEXT TIME double-crust. Stay tuned!!!

Ingredients for single pie crust:
1/3 cup olive oil (when making this I was reminded how disappointed I was about the quality of the midrange olive oil, I may just use canola oil next time or more expensive olive oil)
1 1/4 cup organic flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 cup ice water
1 tablespoon organic raw sugar, optional (I added sugar to “balance” out the olive oil)

Preparation of pie crust:
1. Make sure that the oil and water is ice-cold. This will make the dough flakier.
2. Add all ingredients together to make a smooth dough. I ended up hand-mixing the dough. Once the dough is done, place it in the refrigerator for one hour.
3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Roll out dough on a floured surface and place into greased pie baking dish. Bake for 7-10 minutes to allow pie crust to set for filling.

Pie crust before baking

Pie crust before baking

Meanwhile you can prepare the pie filling.
Ingredients for the pie filling:
3 tablespoons raw sugar
2 tablespoons honey
1 1/2 tablespoons organic flour
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
5-6 apples, peeled, cored, and thinly sliced

Preparation of pie filling:
Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Pour the filling into the prepared crust and bake at 350 degrees F for 30-45 minutes, or until golden brown and apples are tender.

Frist try apple pie_small

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Scrumptious apple walnut bread

Nothing has been posted in over 1 month…how dreadful!!!
We have been baking and cooking, I just have not had the time to actually upload any recipes. So in an effort to at least get some of the recipes posted, I will post a few of them now…but will make changes/additions to them later.

1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup natural apple sauce
3 eggs
1 1/2 cups raw, organic sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
3 cups peeled, cored and cubed apples (we prefer to use apples, such as Fuji, that are a bit sour)
1 cup chopped walnuts

1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Lightly grease two 9×5 inch loaf pans.
2. In a large bowl, stir together oil and apple sauce. Add the eggs, sugar, and vanilla extract.
3. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt.
4. Gradually stir flour mixture into wet ingredients, mixing just until combined. Fold in apples and walnuts. Pour batter into prepared pans. The dough will have a thick pancake-like batter consistency.
5. Bake in preheated oven for 70 minutes, until a knife inserted in the center of a loaf comes out clean.

Note: Make sure to cube the apples, so that the pieces are approximately the same size.
It is best to combine all the ingredients by hand, especially when mixing in the apples and walnuts.

Apple walnut bread

Apple walnut bread

Notes about healthiness:
* Compared to similar recipes, we reduced the amount of oil and substituted with additional apple sauce. We reduced the amount of sugar and replaced white sugar with organic raw sugar. The bread also contains whole wheat flour.
* Baking with apples does reduce the amount of vitamin C in the apples significantly. However, apples, even after baking, are a great source of dietary fiber and potassium.