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Old 10-26-2011, 01:51 AM   #973
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Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Dublin, Ireland
Posts: 94,517

Gail's ham sounds delicious, and Sheri's apple butter sounds manageable - pretty much like a really thick applesauce, with honey instead of sugar.
I'm up to date on the challenges but have been missing out on the chat - visiting family over the weekend and life in general just getting in the way and getting me down .
These days I just make a quick applesauce in the microwave if all I want is enough for the meal - peel, core, chop, add a tablespoon of water and cook till soft. Stir in sugar, spices and maybe a little bit of butter - walnut-sized piece is what I'm talking about.
When I was growing up and we had a lot of windfalls, we'd just clean them and then chop them up, peel, core and all, then steam them in a double boiler and put them through a food mill, then add sugar and spices to taste, plus butter. I think the peels make a difference, it comes out much creamier and thicker .

Had an unexpected guest on Sunday after being out all day Saturday, and a real time-squeeze to cook and eat between church and him needing to get to the mainline train station for an afternoon train. Easy to expand a vegetable and noodle stir-fry, but I was stuck for a quick dessert till I remembered a microwave upside-down cake I used to make.
Upside-Down Chocolate Pudding Serves 4
2 tblsp butter
2/3 cup soft brown sugar
1 can/2 cups pear halves, drained
3 tblsp chopped nuts - I use pecan or walnuts, and don't bother chopping them.
4 tblsp soft butter
1/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup plain flour
2tblsp cocoa
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 egg
1 tblsp water

Place butter and sugar in a 7" soufflé dish and cook on full power for one minute. Stir to mix, then arrange the pears and sprinkle the nuts in between.
Beat all remaining ingredients together till well mixed. Spoon the cake mix over the fruit. Cover the dish with a piece of kitchen paper and cook on full for 6 minutes. Leave to stand for 2 minutes, turn out and serve with cream or pouring custard.
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