Apple Pie Pancakes

applecider-pancakes2 c. all-purpose flour                           ¾ c. powdered milk                             2 T. white sugar                                  1 t. baking powder                                ½ t. baking soda                                   1 t. cinnamon                                       ¼ t. nutmeg                                           1-1/2 c. fresh apple cider                                                                                  ½ c. unsweetened applesauce                                                                                              2 T. sour cream                                                                                                                      2 T. canola oil                                                                                                                          2 eggs, slightly beaten

Apple Pie Filling

1 c. apple, cored, peeled, and diced                                                                                        ¼ c. packed brown sugar                                                                                                        ¼ c. all-purpose flour                                                                                                                ¼ c. quick cooking oats                                                                                                            ½ t. cinnamon                                                                                                                         2 T. cold butter, diced

Measure dry ingredients together in large mixing bowl, whisk to combine.  In another large bowl, combine cider, applesauce, sour cream, oil, and eggs.  Whisk to blend ingredients together.  Stir cider mixture into dry ingredients until batter is just combined.  Let rest 5-10 minutes before making pancakes.

Meanwhile, make apple crumble filling.  Combine sugar, flour, oats, and cinnamon in a medium bowl. Cut in butter using a pastry blender or fork until mixture is crumbly.  Stir in apple to coat.  Set aside.

Heat griddle until water dances on surface.  Use butter to grease griddle and pour batter into 4” pancakes.  Sprinkle approx. 2 T. of Apple mixture on each pancake.  Cook each pancake until bubbly on top and dry around edges.  Flip and cook until other side is light golden brown, about another minute.  Scrape griddle if necessary between batches of pancakes.

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Spiced Apple Cider Bites

Ingredients for batter                                                                                                               5c.flour                                     spicedappleciderbites            2 t. cinnamon                                      ¼ t. nutmeg                                          1 t. salt                                                 ½ t. baking soda                                   1 c. butter, softened                             1-3/4 c. sugar                                       4 lg. Eggs                                             1 T. vanilla                                             2 lg. Apples, peeled, chopped (2 cups)

Apple Cider Buttercream Frosting                                                                                          1 packet Spiced Apple Cider Instant Mix                                                                                1/3 c. milk                                                                                                                              ½ c. butter, softened                                                                                                              4 c. confectioner’s sugar                                                                                                      ½ t. vanilla

Prepare a 11”x15”baking pan by lining it with parchment paper.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a large bowl combine the flour, cinnamon, salt, baking soda, and spices.  Set this to the side.  In another large bowl, using a mixer, cream butter until light.  Add sugar and cream for 3-4 minutes until light and fluffy.  Be sure to scrape the sides of the bowl to fully combine.  Add the eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition.  Mix in the vanilla.

Add the flour mixture, about a third of the mixture, at a time, beating just enough to combine with each addition, until almost incorporated.  Finally, mix in the apples until just combined.

Spread the batter in the prepared pan, working it out until evenly spread.  Bake for 25-35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean.  Place pan on wire racks until completely cooled.

Meanwhile, prepare the frosting.  Measure the milk in a one cup liquid measuring cup.  Add the cider mix and dissolve it in the milk.  Using an electric mixer, beat the butter until smooth.  Add the powdered sugar one cup at a time, beating with each addition.  Alternate adding the milk mixture and sugar, ending with sugar, and beating until all is smooth.  Add the vanilla and if necessary for spreading consistency very gradually add additional milk.

When the cake bar is completely cooled frost with the buttercream frosting and allow to set.  Cut into bars.  Makes approx. 60 1-1/2 inch bites.

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Simple Scones

simple scones

Guests have been asking for my scone recipe for some time.  This is my favorite recipe and using different additions will give you a variety of scones.  One trick is mentioned below, freezing.  I also start with frozen butter and grate it in the food processor.

 

2 c. all-purpose flour                              ½ c. butter, frozen                                                   ] 1 t. baking powder                                 ½ c. fat free sour cream                                          ¼ t. baking soda                                   1 large egg                                                             1/3  c. sugar                                         1/2 t. salt                                                                       ½ c. raisins*

Directions:  In a medium-sized bowl combine flour, sugar, baking powder, soda, and salt.   Grate the butter into very small pieces.  Work into dry ingredients with your fingers.  This mixture should resemble coarse meal.  Stir in raisins.*

In another small bowl, beat the egg and cream until smooth.  Using a fork stir the egg mixture into the flour mixture until large clumps form (do not over work the dough.  Pressing the dough into the sides to pull together to form somewhat of a ball.  Divide into two or three clumps and dump on a floured board.  Press each into a thick disc.

Cut disc into 6-8 triangles (or cut with round cookie cutter).  Put pieces on parchment lined cookie tray, approx.. 2” apart.  Bake in 375 degree preheated oven until golden around the edges. To serve dust with powered sugar or make a glaze with confectioner’s sugar and water, milk, or juice, approx. one tablespoon liquid to one cup of sugar.

The secret to the James Manning House is to freeze the preformed scones before baking. Once frozen wrap tightly and store for up to one month.  Bake as many as desired from frozen state, do not thaw.

*Alternate additives:

Mixed dried fruit                  craisins and orange zest                                                         Lemon-blueberry                dried cherries and almonds                                                   Butterscotch chips             dried apricots and white choc. chips                                 Chocolate and coconut      hazelnuts and toffee                                                                 Pecans and caramels        craisins and white chocolate                                                         Be creative!!

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Sour Cream Coffee Cake

Sour Cream Coffee Cake

½ c. butter, softened                      ¾ c. non-fat sour cream                                                   ½ c. egg substitute                         1 t. vanilla                                                                         1 c. sugar                                        ¼ c. non-fat plain Greek yogurt                                     ¼ c. unsweetened applesauce       ½ c. brown sugar,packed                                               1 t. baking powder                           2 c. all-purposeflour                                                        1 t. baking soda                                                                                                            Streusel:  1 t. cinnamon, ¼ c. brown sugar                                                                              Glaze:  2 T.  non-fat milk, 1 c. powdered sugar

Directions:                                                                                                                               1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Prepare a 10” Bundt pan by greasing with butter flavored Crisco and dusting with 1 T. flour.

2. Blend butter and sugars in large bowl until light and fluffy.  Add sour cream, egg substitute, applesauce, yogurt and vanilla.  Beat until well combined.

3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and baking soda.  Add the flour mixture to the batter bowl and blend until combined.

4. Pour ½ the batter into the Bundt pan and carefully spread to cover the entire bottom of the pan.  Mix the streusel and sprinkle on top of the batter in the Bundt pan.  Cover with the remaining batter.sour cream streusel

5. Bake in warm oven for 45-50 minutes, or a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.  Cool on a wire rack.

6. Loosen the cake and invert on serving platter.  Make the glaze by combining the ingredients and stirring until smooth and thick.  Drizzle over cooled cake.

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Angelic Bananas

6 Bananas                               angelic bananas                                                                       ½ c. butter, melted                                                                                               ¾ c. brown sugar                                                                                               ¾ c. sour cream, for serving

Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Melt butter in shallow casserole dish in microwave. Peel bananas and cut into ½ slices. Place bananas in butter and stir to coat. Scatter brown sugar on top of bananas. Put dish in oven for 20 minutes to bake. Stir gently with wooden spoon after 10 minutes. Remove from oven and divide into serving dishes. Add a dollop of sour cream and serve warm. Makes 6 servings.

 

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Signature Springerle

I’ve talked about our tradition of making Springerle Cookies for the Christmas holidays, but we also enjoy making these favorite cookies for other times of the year.  Valentine’s day is one of those times.  With hearts and flowers, a bit of red food coloring, and raspberry flavor we have a beautiful specialty to say romance.

6 whole eggs                 Making Springerle                                                             6 c. powdered sugar                                                                 1 stick butter, softened                                                             1 tsp. flavoring                                                                           ½ t. baking powder                                                                   1 ½ – 2 lb. Flour                                                                          *optional: grated rind of lemon (nice with anise or lemon)

Directions:

Beat eggs in mixing bowl till they thicken a bit and turn lemon colored (about 5 min). Meanwhile measure out 6 cups of sugar into another bowl.  Add gradually to beaten eggs.  Mix well; add stick of softened butter.  Mix well, add flavoring of your choice, including citrus peel if adding.  Mix well.   Measure out about one pound of flour and whisk with the baking powder.  Gradually add flour to batter  until well incorporated., continue to add flour until consistency feels right; not too dry and not too sticky.  The best way to learn this is by repetition!  It should stick to your fingers but not too much.  When you’ve reached the right consistency, you can roll it out, rub a bit of flour into the surface and it feels pretty smooth.  Roll out to about ¼-3/8” thick.  This depends on how thick you want your cookies and how deep your mold.  Flour your mold and press your mold into the dough.  If you are using a springerle rolling pin (you will want your dough on the thicker side if using a rolling pin) flour the whole rolling pin, and using even pressure roll across the already rolled out dough, molding the patterns as you go.  Cut out each cookie after molding it, regardless of which style of molding used.  Place cookies on a greased or lined baking sheet.

springerlemediaBaking Springerle:

Let the cookies set up for at least 24 hours before baking.  Lay wax or parchment paper over the trays and place the loaded baking sheets on an out of the way table or counter.  After the resting period, bake springerle cookies in a 225-300 degree oven for about 15-25 minutes depending on the temperature used.   (225d. for 20 min.; 250d. for 18 min.; 300d. for 15 min.) The cookies should be just starting to show signs of changing color on the edges, and solid underneath.  Let cookies cool slightly, and remove them to cooling racks until completely cooled.  Store in an airtight container and enjoy!  This recipe can yield up to 3 – 12 dozen depending on the size of the cookie.  Until you have practiced, try halving the recipe.

This recipe courtesy of the Springerle House; www.springerlehouse.com                              Please take a look at our store (under specials tab) to see the vintage Springerle rolling pins and boards we have available for purchase.

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Red Velvet Ooey, Gooey Crinkle Cookies

Red Velvet Ooey Gooey Cookies1 Red Velvet Cake Mix, Duncan Hines                                                                                   8 oz.  1/3 less fat cream cheese, softened                                                                             ½ c. butter, softened                                                                                                               1 lg. Egg                                                                                                                                1 tsp. vanilla extract                                                                                                              ½ c. white chocolate chips                                                                                               Approx. ½ c. of confectioner’s sugar for rolling

Combine butter and cream cheese in a large mixing bowl on medium speed with electric mixer, creaming until smooth and fluffy.  Add the egg and vanilla and continue to blend until fully mixed.  Add the cake mix and continue to mix, on low speed, until a dough forms.  It will be thick and sticky.  Stir in the white chocolate chips by hand.  Refrigerate dough for about an hour.

Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Line cookie trays with parchment, and put powdered sugar into a small bowl.  Take dough out of refrigerator, and roll dough into 1” balls.  Roll the balls in the sugar and place 2” apart on the lined trays.   Hint:  If the dough is still sticky, lightly dust hands with flour to roll balls.  Bake cookies for 10-12 minutes.  Cool cookies on a wire rack.  When completely cooled, if you desire sprinkle with powdered sugar.

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Cabin Fever Time

IMG_6807January is Cabin Fever Month!  There hasn’t been much chance to shovel snow, but it’s always nice to sneak away, forget the phones, (and work) for a little R&R. Can’t you just close your eyes and picture yourself curled up in front of the fire with a good book?  Or maybe you’d like to engage your partner in a board game, or take the time to piece together a challenging puzzle.  The James Manning House can provide all that for your retreat.  Visit www.jamesmanninghouse.com

AND then we’ll add a hot, hearty comfort food breakfast to energize should you decide to 2015-02-18 08.39.17venture outdoors.  Manmade snow has been covering the slopes, and the black diamonds are calling the skiers.  Perhaps there will be snow on the ground to enjoy the typical winter sports,  such as snowshoe trekking, or cross country skiing, or maybe to ride the sleds.   Why not try something without the snow? The ice is now thick enough for some ice-fishing and the perch and panfish are very hungry.  Prompton State Park has trails to hike, from easy to hard, open all year round.  The park is also home to an 18-hole Disc Golf course, which never closes.   Nature provides wonderful natural ice sculptures for the nature enthusiast and photographer to find.  Without snow, and minus the leaves and insects of summer, geocaching is fun in the winter. Visit www.friendsofprompton.com.

winter at PromptonNot an outdoor enthusiast?  Join the Delaware Highlands Conservancy on an Eagle Watch Experience.  Right in our back yard (so to speak) the Upper Delaware River and surrounding region is one of the largest and most important bald eagle wintering areas in the northeastern United States.  The visitor’s center of the Conservancy is open weekends throughout January and February.  They offer tours or can give guidance for your own observations, such as good spots for you to view from your own car.  Visit www.delawarehighlands.org.

Stay with us and shop our stores in downtown Honesdale.  Have you visited the newest antique store, Union Chapel?  Enjoy an evening at the Cooperage for some down home fun and entertainment.  January has some interesting entertainment including game nights, open mike night, and performances by The Paramounts, Scott Ainslie, and Oren Fader.  Visit thecooperageproject.org

Get away from the rat race, beat the winter blues, skip all the drama and reconnect with comfort.  Reserve your two night stay at the James Manning House and enjoy the comforts of home; a queen bed, private bath, TV in the room, wi-fi, and electric fireplace in the room.lanchg  The hospitality station is always filled with coffee and teas, but we will also treat you to some cappuccino and home baked goodies.   Call us to reserve and let us know you’ve been reading and you will get two nights for the price of one!  The only rules are that the nights are consecutive, in January, and no other discounts apply.  Cabin Fever runs from January 5 through                                                                                         January 30.

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Five Days of Holiday Traditions

Springerle boards and rolling pins

Tradition #3 is Baking Springerle.  These traditional anise-flavored German Christmas cookies deserve their own spot on our list of holiday traditions.  On Warren’s mother’s side of the family they are the all-time favorite.  Gather the family and bring a container of Springerle and you will see eyes light up and lips licked for a taste of Grandmom Ruth’s specialty, for you see the tradition has almost died out with only Warren and a cousin still making the treat.springerle

By definition, Springerle are white, anise-flavored cookies, made from a simple egg-flour-sugar dough. Usually rectangular or circular in shape, they have a picture or design stamped on the top. The images are imprinted with specially carved rolling pins or flat molds (Springerle presses, or boards).  Warren has been collecting these molds for over ten years.  His great-grandmother’s rolling pin is proudly displayed in our kitchen and was given to her by her husband as a gift brought from Germany in the late 1800’s.  The history of Springerle dates back into the 15th century and started to honor church holy days.  Many of the impressions on the molds are religious,  but in more recent history depict animals, flowers and the modern resin molds even have decorations for holidays such as Halloween.

Most times these cookies are baked for Christmas, as a special treat as the process is springerlecookiestime consuming.  After all in the cookie’s history they were used much as we send Christmas cards today.  Over 40 years ago I was introduced to making these embossed gems.  Warren’s grandmother taught me, using her recipe (Written in handfuls and pounds instead of cups and teaspoons! At least it was English) and all beat and mixed by hand.  The traditional leavening agent in the cookies is Hartshorn, or baker’s ammonia.  This is what makes the Springerle recipecookies “spring up” when baking.  After pressing the design into the cookies they must rest for 24 hours to set the pattern in order to hold it during baking.  Because these cookies have no fat in them they dry out and harden even if sealed tightly, but hardcore Springerle fans will just dunk the cookie and enjoy!

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Five Days of Christmas Traditions

Tradition #2  C is for Cookies!  That’s right there are a few cookie monsters that live      cookiecollagearound here.  We’ve been enjoying baking (and eating) cookies as a family for a very long time.  I think every family has their traditions when it comes to the sweets.  I know I have very happy memories of helping my parents cutting out sugar cookies then sprinkling colored sugar on the frosting my mother spread over those tender morsels.  The whole time Perry Como was crooning out the Christmas melodies on the record player.  So tasty were some of those cookie recipes that they need to be made again and again each year.  Then when my favorites were joined together with Warren’s fond favorites that  also had to be made the list of recipes kept growing.  As my daughters’ started their families they of course made their favorites, or even more fun we might get together to bake.  This is especially true with the sandtarts, those wonderfully buttery thin delights that only my daughter can roll to perfection.  DSC_0551  Now there’s Pintrest and more recipes to try, but the favorites can’t be forgotten, so the list of cookie types that must be made just keeps growing, and growing. Dare I say, so do the waistlines during the holidays!  So what is your favorite cookie?  See if it’s on our list, I’m always game for trying the recipes of others just send it our way. This year our cookie platters include: Frosted Sugar Cookies, Sandtarts, Chocolate Tassies, Butter Spritz Cookies, Raspberry Danish, White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Squares, Oatmeal Jam-Up Cookies, Peanut Butter Cups, Peanut Butter Blossoms, Macaroons, Apricot Foldovers, Chocolate Chip, Candy Cane Cookies, Red Velvet Ooey-gooey Cookies, Chocolate Mint Pinwheels, Cinnamon Bun Cookies, Gingerdoodles, Snowman Shortbread, and German Springerle.  13cookies

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