It's been snowing all day and I've been thinking a lot about my goals and timeline for this year, which has pretty much kept me paralyzed in bed, so my SO suggested I stress-bake.
Drawing from this recipe, I pulled out whatever ingredients I had that were listed here and added in a few of my own.
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1 cup white sugar
- 1 cup unsweetened applesauce
- 2 cups all-purpose flour (optional to keep in a huge kimchi container)
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/8 tsp almond extract
- (optional watching of The Apprentice with the SO on the side)
First, preheat your oven to 350F. It doesn't take long to assemble everything, so you'll want your oven ready for you quickly.
Then, it's time to pull out your guns and do one of my least favorite things in the world--cream the butter.
Creaming butter is a big workout if you pull your butter straight from the fridge, so make sure that you've let it sit out on your counter for about 30 minutes to let it soften. You can help speed up this process by cutting it up into small pieces to expose more of it to the room temperature.
Add in your sugar, and start using a fork to combine the two ingredients by smushing them together against the sides of your bowl by pushing the butter through the tines of your fork. You should end up with something that looks fluffy when you're done, but if you have noodles for arms like me, having the butter and sugar combined as small pebbles should suffice.
Next, dump everything else into your butter-sugar mixture and mix it together. I switched between the fork and a rubber spatula for this. When it's done, it should be a pretty thick, babyfood-looking mess. Put that into whatever greased bake-safe container you own and smooth down the surface as best as you can.
Then bake. I followed the instructions from the linked recipe and baked for 40 minutes, checked in, and added another 10 minutes on top of that. And decided I should broil it for 4 minutes to add color on top, which we later learned was a mistake. Oops.
The edges got a bit burnt from the crazy broiling action, but man, the top is a little crunchy and the inside is so moist and soft. The cinnamon really comes through with the slight apple flavor, which I love because apple pie is one of my favorite desserts! Another plus is how it's not overly sweet.
For next time though, I might try adding in some fun texture surprises, like walnuts or apple chunks, and definitely would skip broiling.