I love to spend a few minutes tooling about TJMaxx. Sometimes, I don't find much and I understand why TJMaxx exists. Other times, I find a little treasure. After my doctor's appointment on Monday, I drove a block and browsed through the store hoping actually to find a cute shirt to wear for my anniversary dinner that evening. That didn't happen, but I found a cookbook by the chef at Tribecca Grill in New York City, Don Pintabona, The Tribecca Cookbook. It was a $30 cookbook that I got for five buckaroos! You gotta love that!
Here's a recipe I tried and is worthy of passing on! And you can see that the fam enjoyed it too!
Home-Style Applesauce Cake
- ½ c. (1 stick) plus 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 2 c. sifted all-purpose flour
- 1 c. sugar
- 1 t. baking powder
- ¼ t. coarse salt
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten
- ½ c. raisins, optional
- ½ c. walnut pieces, optional
- 2 c. applesauce, preferably homemade
- 2 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, and thinly sliced
- 3 T. unsalted butter, melted
- 2 T. cinnamon-sugar
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Using 1 T. of butter, lightly coat a 9-inch square cake pan. Set aside.
Sift flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt into a mixing bowl. Cut the remaining ½ c. of butter into the flour mixture. Add the egg and, using your hands, work the butter and egg into the flour to make a loose ball of crumbly dough. Divide the dough in half.
Using one half of the dough, fit the dough into the pan, pushing with your fingers to work it up the sides of the pan.
If using, combine the raisins and walnuts with the applesauce and pour the applesauce mixture over the dough in the pan and, using a spatula, spread it out evenly over the dough. If not using the raisins and walnuts, pour the applesauce directly over the dough.
Crumble the remaining dough over the applesauce, making sure that the entire top is covered. Set the apple slices over the top in a decorative pattern and, using a pastry brush, generously coat the apple slices with the melted butter. Sprinkle the top with cinnamon-sugar and place the cake in the preheated oven. Bake for 55 minutes or until the crust is golden and the apples are nicely caramelized.
Remove the cake from the oven and allow to cool slightly on a wire rack. Serve warm with whipped cream, ice cream, or frozen yogurt, if desired. (We served it with Crème Fraiche.)
NOTE: The raisins and nuts are not necessary, but they do add texture and crunch to the filling.
NOTE: The applesauce can be replaced with any in-season fruit. You will need 4 cups of thinly sliced fruit or whole berries mixed with 1 T. sugar, 1 T. all-purpose flour, 1 T. lemon juice, and a pinch of cinnamon in place of the applesauce-raisin-nut mixture.