Thursday, October 2, 2008

apple gingerbread

Yesterday was the perfect Fall day...big puffy clouds, sun shining, a nip in the air... but you could still get away without a jacket. Time to go apple picking...we are lucky enough to live close to several amazing apple orchards. It's easy to be spontaneous.... grab our baskets and head for one of my family's favorite Fall activities. This trip was a mother-daughter date and we had the entire orchard to ourselves. Now we'd like to invite you.

We picked Macintoshes, Cortlands and Empires from big, old trees that had seen many Autumns and were laden with ripe, delicious fruit. There is something altogether magical about plucking an apple from a tree. That certain twist of the wrist and distinct snap belong only to this sweet time of year. Long before children and marriage, my husband and I worked as "pickers" on an apple orchard in Vermont for an entire season. My husband had worked for several harvests before we'd met. He introduced me to my first East Coast Fall by convincing me to come pick with him. It was really hard work, intensely beautiful, and very romantic. Now seeing my children in an apple orchard is a little bit of bliss.


I can guarantee there will be more apple recipes. Here is the first:



Apple Gingerbread
We eat this as an afternoon snack and even for an easy breakfast on rushed mornings.

1/2 cup butter or vegetable oil
3 large eggs
1/2 cup molasses
1/3 cup maple syrup
2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/3 cup milk
1 1/2 to 2 cups grated apple

Cream butter, eggs, molasses, and syrup well. Combine dry ingredients and add alternately with the milk to the butter mixture. Stir in grated apple. Pour into a greased and floured 9" square pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 40-45 minutes. Cool 10 minutes in pan and then turn onto a wire rack. Serve with a dollop of whipped cream or Greek yogurt. My children are thrilled because they're having "cake" for breakfast. If you want a little extra sweetness or just to make it fancy, top it with a dusting of confectioners sugar (which is now available organically).

*Additional notes just added:
1. Thanks Meet Me At Mikes for your lovely link today regarding the blog and apple gingerbread! Welcome to anyone new popping by...hope you have fun.

2. My thoughtful 10 year old son and sometimes blog editor (who has been eating this gingerbread since he was a babe) wants you all to know that it's only considered "cake" if you put a sweet topping on it. He clarified this while happily munching a piece of gingerbread at breakfast this morning.



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31 comments:

  1. I love apple picking and am also very fortunate to have two beautiful family run orchards in the distance between my home and my work. My families favorite is apple/raspberry crisp but nothing beats the taste of a freshly picked organically grown apple eaten within minutes of the twist and snap off the tree.

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  2. Thanks for the recipe! We went to the orchard last night and picked up "seconds" for 60 cents a pound! They didn't look second to me, but I'll take them for that price!

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  3. Your photos are beautiful. The orchard is in an ideal setting and you really did pick the perfect day to go. Thanks for sharing.
    Rosemary
    PS: Stop by for a visit:
    http://contentinacottage.blogspot.com

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  4. your pictures look so dreamy and lovely! i feel like i want to visit the country so i can go pick some apples now.

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  5. Beautiful photos! And thanks for the recipe.
    Now I'm counting on you to post photos of your window installation. I have to decorate my son's preschool multi-purpose room for the fall festival and your leaves and owl were so inspiring. Show us more! :-)

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  6. After looking at all of your latest projects I was suprised to see you got away for the day. I forgot to tell you that sometime soon I'm planning a "Maya" day. I'm going to spend a day with your tutorials and spend the day creating things. I think I better mark it in pen on the calender so it doesn't get usurped by other things!

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  7. That recipe looks awesome. We're heading out apple picking this weekend and will have to give this a try! Thanks!

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  8. we just went apple and pear picking this weekend - i blogged about it yesterday. needless to say, i have boxes of apples and pears in the kitchen and am always looking for recipes. thanks for sharing your recipe - i'll be sure to give it a try!

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  9. What a fun day! I love that shot of your little one with her cute basket.

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  10. Yummy-looking recipe... but I was more excited to see the fabric the plate is sitting on! I have a good amount of that very fabric, which I found at an antique mart, but don't really know how old it is. I love it.

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  11. fantastic post! thanks meet me at mike's for the intro!

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  12. Oh yum! I grew up in a community that subsists largely on apple, pear and cherry orchards. My dad still lives right in the middle of expansive pear orchards, and we'll just have to visit during this harvest time! Great photos! Love the apple pic with the rounded corners. Mmmm. I can almost smell and taste them and feel their crisp crunch in my mouth.

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  13. I love your last picture, it makes me drool.

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  14. This looks & sounds absolutely wonderful Maya

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  15. Oh it is so beautiful where you live the light is amazing. we are going apple picking this weekend. I will definately be making you gorgeous recipe. I let you know how it turns out. Yum can't wait.

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  16. What a lovely post, filled with all of the senses of this wonderful season. I can just feel the sun and the breeze and taste the sweet, crisp apples!

    I made the apple gingerbread this morning, and it was a HUGE hit! My husband added cream cheese frosting, and my daughter added raspberries on top, and we were in heaven!

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  17. So happy many of you will give this a try...yeah for Zencrafter who made it this morning! I love her topping suggestions. I'm off to whip up a mini batch of cream cheese frosting for the last two pieces I promised the kids for afternoon snack. I'll try not to slice a sliver to go with my tea...
    Happy Apple Season!!!

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  18. Gorgeous fall images! I especially enjoy your romantic depiction of apple picking with your hubby...smell of apples in the air...delicious!

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  19. Mmmmm. Macintosh apples, fresh from the tree. We had a great Macintosh apple tree in my childhood backyard. They don't grow well here in California's Central Valley, though. Boo.

    Lovely pictures.

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  20. My parents tell me I was conceived in an apple orchard at a time they were apple pickers in Wenatchee, Washington. So I sort of have a soft spot for these things. :) I am totally trying this recipe by the way. It sounds healthful and delicious!

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  21. Your posts are so inspiring. Today I'm making banana bread but I'm sure there will be a day of apple picking coming up for us soon and I'll be searching back here for this post to make this.

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  22. we went picking a few weeks back for Macs but it is time to go again for more. Thanks for the recipe! I will try it soon!

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  23. I looked at your profile, because when i saw your pictures i knew it was upstate NY! :) I'm from syracuse! Found your blog today.
    thanks for the apple Gingerbread recipe.

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  24. We're hoping to get to a u-pick orchard sometime next week and this kind of recipe is EXACTLY what I had in mind for when we get home.
    Thank you!

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  25. Mmm..apple orchards. My poor kids have never lived where you can see them. Of course, they have routinely mango-harvested, and see lorikeets as routine in our yard, so I think it trades off well. :p

    But it's cool and rainy today...that gingerbread, I can practically smell it from here.

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  26. I love apple picking, its a shame that there are no orchards here, we did get to go blackberry picking last week and I made some blackberry and vanilla muffins with them.

    the recipe sounds lovely and I love that last photo of lovely apples ready to be picked.

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  27. The apple gingerbread recipe sounds really good. I pretty much like anything ginger. One of my favorite candies is chocolate dipped ginger.

    I especially liked your photos in your post. Makes me we want to go apple picking, it's so serene.

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  28. Maya, I can't believe how many comments you are getting now..! Congratulations.
    I have to try this recipe.
    And that thing about you and your husband is so romantic...

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  29. We just made the apple "cake" yesterday and it was delicious. Thanks for sharing. Love your blog.

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  30. Can not wait to try this recipe, Love this blog.

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