Posts Tagged ‘Apple’

Recipe: Apple-Cheese Streusel Squares


Apple-Cheese Streusel Squares

This is a recipe that I submitted to Pillsbury’s Baking Challenge. I heard about the contest one night, and realizing that I only had a couple of days to create a recipe, I found a tube of Pillsbury Crescents in my fridge and started brainstorming. Apple-Cheese Struesel Squares (or rectangles, depending on how you cut ’em), is what came out of it all. After serving the delicious dessert to several friends of mine (and of course, trying it myself), I knew I had a winner in my books. Moist and flaky Pillsbury Crescent base for this quick and easy dessert, along with the blend of tender apples, cream cheese and streusel topping. If you enjoy the recipe, remember to head over to the Pillsbury Baking Challenge website and vote for my dessert (you can vote once a day)!


1 can (235 g) Pillsbury* Crescent Rolls

For cream cheese filling:
1 – 250g package of cream cheese (room temp.)
3 tbsp granulated sugar (45 mL)
1 egg
1/2 tsp vanilla extract (2.5 mL)

For apple filling:

2 cooking apples, peeled and sliced (e.g. golden delicious)
3 tbsp unsalted butter (45 mL)
2 tbsp brown sugar (30 mL)
1 tsp ground cinnamon (5 mL)
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg (2.5 mL)

For Streusel Topping:

1/3 cup flour (75 mL)
1/4 cup brown sugar (50 mL)
1/4 cup unsalted butter (50 mL)
1 tsp ground cinnamon (5 mL)


  1. Grease an 8-inch casserole dish and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  2. In a saucepan over medium heat, melt the 3 tbsp of unsalted butter for the apple filling. Add in the 2 tbsp of brown sugar and cinnamon and stir until dissolved. Gradually add in the sliced apples and cook for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat.
  3. In a medium bowl, using a spatula mix together the ingredients for the cream cheese filling: cream cheese and granulated sugar until blended, then add in the egg and vanilla extract. Set aside.
  4. For the streusel topping, mix together the flour, sugar and cinnamon. Using a pastry blender or a fork, cut in the butter and combine until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
  5. Open the can of Pillsbury* Crescent Rolls and arrange four sections in the bottom of the casserole dish to cover the bottom of it (use your fingers to stretch the dough slightly if necessary). Slowly pour the cream cheese mixture over the bottom layer of the Crescent dough. Top the cream cheese mixture evenly with the semi-cooked apple. Add the remaining four pieces of Crescent dough on top of the layers to seal.
  6. Top the layers evenly with the streusel topping and bake in the pre-heated oven for 25-30 minutes, or until the top is golden-brown. Cool for 5 minutes before cutting into squares.

Tips and suggestions: Top with chopped walnuts prior to cooking and serve with vanilla ice cream.

Recipe: Banana-Apple Crumble Muffins


Banana-Apple Crumble Muffins

I usually don’t like eating bananas when they are too ripe, so when I remembered I had a couple of ripe bananas in my kitchen the other day, I decided to make a batch of banana muffins from scratch. I also wanted to make this batch a little different so I added an apple to the recipe, used sour cream to make the muffins soft, along with a brown sugar topping and ended up with a dozen tasty treats! Since I added the apple, I was also able to cut down on the amount of sugar that’s usually called for in regular banana muffin recipes. Feel free to substitute the oats for granola for the crunch topping, or omit the nuts.

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 12 medium-large muffins


1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup white sugar
1/3 cup butter (melted, at room-tempurature)
2 large-sized bananas (ripe)
1 apple (peeled and diced)
1 egg, lightly beaten
1/2 cup sour cream
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. cinnamon

1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1/3 cup Quaker Oats
1 tbsp. flour
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tbsp. butter (melted, at room-temperature)


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. For the topping: in a small bowl mix together the brown sugar, cinnamon, oats and melted butter with a spoon, until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Set aside.
  3. For the muffins: In a medium-sized bowl, mash bananas with a fork or potato masher.
  4. Using a wooden spoon, mix in the diced apples to the bananas. Then add the melted butter, vanilla, beaten egg and sour cream to the banana-apple mixture until blended.
  5. In a large bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and cinnamon.
  6. Stir the banana mixture into the flour mixture until just combined. Fold in chopped walnuts, being careful not to over-mix.
  7. Pour batter into a lightly greased or lined 12-cup muffin pan, about 3/4 full.
  8. Sprinkle a small amount of the the sugar-oat topping on top of each banana-apple muffin.
  9. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the centre of a muffin comes out clean.
  10. Cool in pan for 5-10 minutes before removing. Eat and enjoy!

Damn You Mr. Jobs! Stop Releasing Super-Cool Gadgets!


Apple iPod Touch - It sucks that I don’t have wads of cash just lying around. I think I’m due for a new mp3 player… and the iPod Touch is it. As for the overview of this new gadget:

[The iPod Touch] features built-in Wi-Fi networking and a revolutionary multi-touch user interface—first introduced on iPhone—that makes it easy to find all of your music, video, and other digital content and enjoy it on the gorgeous widescreen display on iPod touch. The multi-touch interface uses pioneering new software to present the perfect user interface for Safari, Apple’s YouTube application, and the new iTunes Wi-Fi Music Store—all of which come with iPod touch. An unbelievable 8mm thin, iPod touch features up to 22 hours of audio playback and up to five hours of video playback. Available later this month, iPod touch comes in 8GB and 16GB models for $299 and $399, respectively.

It’s a damn good thing I didn’t waste my money buying the original iPods/Nanos, because this one is just so sexy! :)

*starts putting coins in piggy bank to pay for iPod Touch*

Click here for the guided tour of the iPod Touch from Apple.

I Just Touched an iPhone


One of my former tech-savvy co-workers dropped by the office today, and what did he have with him? An iPhone! Okay, so I only handled it for a couple of minutes, but it swayed me to seriously think purchasing one when they finally come to Canada… especially for business needs. It’s a little heavier than I thought it would be, but the interface is breathtaking (I just love that slide lock function!).

Perhaps I’ll wait a few months after the mob calms down when it’s released north of the border, though.

Apple’s iPhone Release: The Time Is Near


iPhone - Photo Credit:

Ever since Steve Jobs’ Macworld Keynote back in January, tech-savvy (and band-wagoners) have been itching to get their hands on the much-awaited iPhone: Apple’s device that’s an iPod, a phone, an Internet mobile communicator in one. This sure is one sexy phone.

Now, unless you have been living under a rock, there is a feeding frenzy that will occur in less than 24 hours. A mass techsteria like the world has never seen. Starting tomorrow at 6pm, Americans who have been camping outside Apple and AT&T stores since the beginning of the week will be able to purchase the iPhone. I can’t even image the hysteria that will ensue. And I thought Boxing Day was bad. I’ll be on the lookout for ‘brawls break out in iPhone lineup’ stories in the news tomorrow. Check out this listing on Craigslist for a “line-waiter” position. And another one asking for help. Wow… this is just a few of many similar listings. People are willing to ask for and even willing to pay up to the price of an iPhone ($500) just for a spot in line.

Will I purchase one when it comes to Canada through Rogers Wireless? Probably not at first. I just bought a Nokia 6265i from Telus last week (they offered me an amazing monthly plan, and all I had to do was sign 2 years of my life away to get the phone for $49.99), so the iPhone would probably have to wait until after that (or until I find an extra $500 lying around). Hell… I don’t even have an iPod yet.

The iPhone does look amazing though. I think it will live up to the hype (unless escalating complaints about AT&T’s network arise). The most intriguing feature I’m looking forward to though is the multi-touch display (I hope they’ll give away free screen wipes). For a quick rundown on those still wondering what the iPhone is, here’s a quick rundown from

iPhone introduces an entirely new user interface based on a revolutionary multi-touch display and pioneering new software that allows users to control iPhone with just a tap, flick or pinch of their fingers. iPhone combines three products into one small and lightweight handheld device—a revolutionary mobile phone, a widescreen iPod®, and the Internet in your pocket with best-ever applications on a mobile phone for email, web browsing and maps. iPhone ushers in an era of software power and sophistication never before seen in a mobile device, which completely redefines what users can do on their mobile phones.

If you want more in depth coverage on the features of the iPhone, check out the Apple site. I also really like that “slide to unlock” feature. You don’t know how many times my old cell phone took pictures of the inside of my bag…

Personally, I think the iPhone is going to transform the mobile telephone industry, the same way the iPod affected the record industry. It sucks that now I probably can’t watch an episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation without critiquing a technological device and saying “the iPhone is so much better than that”. ;)

To cheer up all the people who cannot purchase an iPhone because they don’t live in the U.S., or would rather use the $500 for more constructive means, here’s a funny sketch from MadTV that pokes fun at Steve Jobs’ Apple technology (along with obvious U.S. political satire):

YouTube Preview Image