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These are part pastry, part muffins and totally awesome.  Use leftover challah or chunks of day-old croissants for these. They are puffy, golden and satisfying and unlike any other muffin I know. I first saw them at a Second Cup Cafe and knew I would have to replicate my own edition.

 This is a great and welcoming cake that is great to have on hand for unexpected company. It's as good on day one as it is on day five. It's huge (but you can make two smaller cakes and freeze one) so expect a towering wonder or half the recipe. Up to you....

This cake is a cross between a muffin and a scone. It makes perfect coffee break snack and an superb brunch bread. It freezes well too. When someone calls and says they are dropping by in an hour - this is the one to make.  

Serve warm with a maple-tinged caramel sauce. Big chunks of apple in a golden batter with a touch of spice. Great for breakfast, brunch or a summery, post BBQ dessert.

My painter is lactose intolerant. These are the sort of things you discover when a 3-day house painting job dawdles from June to just after Labor Day. It's like having an extra son/husband around. I wanted to bake our painter something flavorful but dair- free. So I created this cake which is wonderfully flavor rich, moist and gorgeous but lactose-free. It was intended for the painter to share at a company dinner with his out-of-town relatives. Instead, he offered a few slices and apparently hid the remaining, coveted slices in an empty paint can. Ok, I don’t know that for sure. I do know he a) loved the cake and b) he hid some extra slices – but not in an empty paint can. This cake features a gloriously rich but butter and milk free batter, with a river of apples running through it and an elegant fondant ripple topping. I made two of these cakes – one for him and one for us. You know, I also ending up hiding a few pieces and considering I could whip up another one in seconds, that says something about how good this cake is.

Big, bold, moist, simple – hey, give me a slice! This cake calls for raisins and nuts but it also is nice with dried or fresh cranberries, chocolate chunks or really, absolutely wonderful with nothing added.  The scent of this baking will bring crowds to your kitchen. I don't think I have ever made a cake that has a better perfume-while-baking than this cake! A drizzle of melted white chocolate, tinted with some cinnamon would be extra special on this cake, or a lemon glaze but the dusting of confectioners’ sugar is perfect. Use your own fresh applesauce or jarred/canned unsweetened applesauce. Btw - my big secret is I rarely use a Bundt pan but I do adore Nordicware's (famed for Bundt pans) colorful non-stick angel food cake pans. It's what I bake honey cake in, chocolate, marble, and any sort of tall, grand hospitality cake.

 Is this a scone in a loaf or an unusual quick bread? This is wonderful fresh or toasted. It is not quite cake; not quite a bread – somewhere inbetween.  If you can, use Californian dried apricots.
This recipe has some 800 hits - it's a winer.

The pure buttery taste of this loaf is quite satisfying. This pound cake is traditionally glazed with a thin pink fondant but you can omit it or use a white or chocolate fondant glaze topping. You may wish to substitute chocolate chips for the currants if you prefer but only use one cup of chocolate chips (not two). This is just one buttery, solid poundcake from Australia that begs for a big pot of tea and a fluffy, vapid magazine or a great read-it-at-one-shot novel.

These are soda bread-for-two sort of soda breads, wonderfully rustic but taken up a notch with a touch of vanilla and an addictive Irish cream glaze. To give as gifts, wrap a couple of these in brown paper or a pastry box with a green ribbon, or in two’s in a cello bag with a green ribbon and a side packet of Irish Breakfast tea.

These muffins are extraordinary no matter how you bake them but making them using Melitta coffee filter papers put them over the top (or get those new bigger muffin baking cups). Taste? Smooth bananas, with caramel, pecans, brown sugar and vanilla –a pure bouquet of autumnal sweetness. 
 

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