Saturday, February 20, 2010
I made a discovery recently. Other bloggers actually plan their posts. As in, they think ahead of what they are going to blog about. And get this. They stage their food, and afterwards, edit the pictures before they post them! I know, right? Who'da thunk it?
This shouldn't really be news to me, but somehow I thought people were just posting up whatever they ate for dinner that evening. I realized otherwise when I saw this Pioneer Woman post, her new cookbook at her feet, pages bookmarked, notes, like she's prepping for a midterm biology test.
Then this post at Smitten Kitchen, where she admits that she is so busy cooking and taking pics that she sometimes forgets to eat the food! I adore SK, but that's like those annoying skinny people who say, "Ohmigoodness, it's 5:30? I've been so busy, I just forgot to eat breakfast and lunch!" I never miss a meal, and I promise you, I eat every darn thing that's posted here. That's a R&V guarantee.
But thinking about PW and SK and their blog perfection, I thought I could at least try to add a little window-dressing to the pics. So when I made these bars to use up an abundance of applesauce, I cut out some bars and arranged them nicely on a cake plate, like delicious little soldiers standing all in a row.
This was my modest effort to make them look appetizing while baby was sitting in his highchair, playing with a glass cup half full of milk, so pardon me if I didn't haul out the spotlights and reflective gear.
But here's the deal: since I wanted the bars to look pretty, I cut them out from the middle. A bar cutting faux pas in real life, but for you, no worries. However, lucky me since I adore the edges. So this is what I call a win-win: pretty pic for you, and plenty of nibblicious edge for me.
And baby? A happy, sticky, milk-spilt mess. Thank goodness babies aren't dry clean only.
Applesauce Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting
Adapted from The Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook, the original recipe calls for 1 full cup of oil - I think that's too much. These are applesauce bars, after all. Substituting half the oil with additional applesauce doesn't hurt these one bit. Be warned: once you schmear on the frosting, these innocent little bars become highly addictive.
2 cups all-purpose flour (feel free to substitute up to half with whole wheat flour)
1 and 1/2 cups sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
4 eggs, beaten
2 and 1/2 cups unsweetened applesauce
1/2 cup canola or vegetable oil
In a large bowl, whisk together dry ingredients. Stir in eggs, applesauce, and oil until combined. Spread into an ungreased 15x10x1-inch baking pan (like a cookie sheet in rim or jelly roll pan). Bake at 350 for 25 to 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool completely, then spread with cream cheese frosting.
4 oz. cream cheese, softened
3 Tbls. butter, softened
1 tsp. vanilla
About 3 cups of powdered sugar (or more or less to taste)
In a large bowl, stir together cream cheese and butter until very soft and thoroughly mixed. Stir in vanilla. Gradually add powdered sugar, stirring well after each addition. Spread on cooled bars.
Posted by Rhubarb and Venison at 12:28 PM