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Jan 4, 2010

Applesauce Raisin Cake Recipe



2 cups flour

1-1/2 cups sugar

1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda

1 tablespoon cocoa

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon nutmeg

1 teaspoon allspice

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1 cup applesauce

2 eggs, at room temperature, lightly beaten

1-1/2 cups raisins


8 ounces cream cheese, softened

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2-1/2 cups confectioners' sugar

1 tablespoon fresh lime juice (or lemon)

Milk, as needed


Pour hot water over raisins to cover. Let steep until plump, about 15 minutes, then drain thoroughly.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9 x 13-inch pan with non-stick foil.

In large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking soda, cocoa, cinnamon, salt, nutmeg, and allspice. Make a well in the center. Add oil, applesauce and beaten eggs. Mix well. Fold in plumped raisins. Pour into pan and bake for 30 to 35 minutes. Cool to room temperature.


In small bowl, beat cream cheese until smooth. Add vanilla extract and confectioners' sugar. Add lime juice and just enough milk to make frosting smooth and easy to spread. Smooth frosting on top of cooled cake. Refrigerate cake for 1 hour.

Yield: 24 to 36 servings, depending on cut size

Black Bottom Banana Cheesecake Bars Recipe



4 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature

1 egg, at room temperature

8 Tablespoons (1 stick) butter, melted, but at room temperature

1 box (18.25 ounces) chocolate devil's food cake mix



2 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, at room temperature

2 eggs, at room temperature

1 cup mashed ripe banana (about 1/2 pound or 2 large bananas)

1 cup powdered sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Powdered sugar for dusting


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 9-inch by 13-inch baking pan with foil.

For the Bottom:

Cream 4 ounces of cream cheese, 1 egg, and butter together on low speed until combined, about 1 minute. Blend in cake mix by hand until combined. It will be very thick, but piable like a soft dough. Press into bottom of a 9 x 13-inch baking pan.

For the Topping:

Place cream cheese, bananas, powdered sugar, and vanilla in a small bowl. Begin mixing on low speed until sugar is incorporated. Increase to medium speed and beat until smooth, at least 3 minutes or longer if need be. Add eggs one at a time, beating only until incorporated. Spread cream cheese batter evenly over bottom chocolate layer.

Bake at 350 degrees F. for 45 minutes. Cool completely. Carefully remove from pan, peel off foil, and cut into squares. Just prior to serving, dust with powdered sugar.

Yield: 24 bar cookies

Apple Blue Cheese Bacon Cheesecake Recipe


Nonstick vegetable spray

1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, divided use

1/2 pound bacon, cooked, drained, and crumbled (reserve 2 Tablespoons of fat)

1 onion, diced

2 apples, peeled, cored, and diced

2 cloves garlic, minced

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

32 ounces (4 large blocks) cream cheese, at room temperature

5 eggs

3 Tablespoons wine vinegar

1/4 cup whiskey

12 ounces blue cheese, crumbled

2 Tablespoons minced chives

Sliced fresh apples, toast wedges, and/or assorted cocktail crackers


Preheat oven to 200 F. Coat a 9-inch springform pan with vegetable oil spray. Dust with 2 tablespoons of the Parmesan cheese. Set aside.

Saute onion in bacon fat until softened and translucent. Add apples and garlic and continue to saute over medium heat an additional 2 to 3 minutes until apples begin to soften. Remove from heat and season with salt and pepper. Let cool.

Beat the cream cheese in a large bowl until smooth. Add eggs, wine vinegar, and whiskey, beating until smooth. Stir in apple mixture, bacon, blue cheese, remaining Parmesan cheese, and chives by hand.

Pour batter into prepared pan and place in the preheated oven. Let bake overnight for 8 to 9 hours (timing is not critical). It should be fairly firm and slightly browned. Remove from oven and cool on a rack at least 1 hour.

Cover the top of the cooled cheesecake with plastic wrap. Place an inverted plate over the top, turn it over, and remove the pan. Refrigerate the upside-down cheesecake at least 1 hour. Reinvert the cheesecake and remove plastic wrap. Cover and refrigerate 1 hour.

To serve as an appetizer, cut slices with a knife dipped in warm water and garnish with fresh apple slices, toast wedges, and/or cocktail crackers of choice.

Yield: 10 to 12 servings