Next week is Diwali (Deepavali). I’m not Hindu (nor am I anything else), but in one description I’ve read, it described Diwali as a celebration of victory of light over darkness, good over evil, knowledge over ignorance, and hope over despair. Those are ideals that I can get on-board with. One of the things that many of my Indian friends have done is have given sweets for Diwali, so I thought that I would try making some myself. I’ve never made this type of sweet before, and I know that it isn’t a very traditional recipe in any way, but they were easy to make and taste amazing. So Happy Diwali to one and all!
The first time that I heard about apple butter, I was very confused. It’s a bit of a misnomer of course — there is no daily in this butter! In essence, it is just very concentrated apple sauce. Sort of a jam. Not even close to being a jelly. The nice thing: it works great as an addition to pies and makes a great filling for these bars. You can of course make it yourself, but it seems to be readily available in the shops these days too.
At the farmer’s market last weekend, I came across these really small plums. They are only about the size of a walnut ball, maybe even a little smaller. They were too enticing not to buy. Plum cakes are actually very common in Germany and parts of Eastern Europe, so I thought that minimum, I would make one of my standard plum cakes before I came up with the idea of making an upside down cake. Turned out lovely. All the caramel and toffee bits you see in the photos is where the butter and brown sugar leaked out of my spring form pan (advice : don’t use a spring form pan!). If you can’t find mini-plums, regular ones will work just as well.
One of the great things about late summer and early autumn in my foodie world is figs. I get giddy for those figgies! And, to make them last longer, I often make jam out of figs, which can be used for both sweet or savory things, added to stews or even stir fries, but don’t count out making Fig Newtons! This year, I’ve made two sorts: Cardamom Fig and Orange Fig. Distinctly different but equally lovely.
It’s been a “bad” month for creating things. Work has been crazy busy and I have been off on some mini-adventures, which has left the cooking and baking at the margins, which I hate. Mostly because cooking and baking are my self-reliever, and when I just don’t have the time or the energy, I feel badly. That said, last night I did make these Apricot and Dried Cranberry Pinwheel Cookies. They aren’t the prettiest cookies that I have ever made (I let the butter get too soft, which in turn make the dough crumbly which in turn made it hard to roll out, and then roll together). They do taste quite lovely though.