Food, Fun and More

Coffeecake and Stress Relief

Apple Coffee Cake

Apple Coffee Cake

After deliberating for a year, I’ve decided to sell my house. It has been my home for over thirty-two years. This is the house I raised my family in, remodeled and decorated from top to bottom. I will leave my gardens that are filled with plants and flowers that were shared by friends, some who are gone forever. Fluffy, our first cat, is buried under the bleeding heart by the back fence. My roots here are deep and tangled. They won’t pull free easily.
I’ve been sorting through boxes that haven’t been opened in years. My son’s toys and mementos from birth through high school graduation are stacked against the basement walls. There is a dresser my dad hand painted with Pennsylvania Dutch motifs, a used rocker I meant to repair and paint for the front porch. Boxes of photographs and birthday cards, awards and board games, canning jars and dishes fill the shelves. The thought of sorting through thirty years of STUFF has my stress level off the charts.
I’ve decided to sell because as the last couple of years have passed, I find the focus of my life is no longer here in the village. My second granddaughter will be born in the spring and I want to be near, close enough for both of them to come by after school, drop over to play or spend the night at an all-girls slumber party.
My church family is in Jackson, as is my camera club and my writers’ group. My favorite cross-country skiing spot, the Dahlem Center, is just south of town. Jackson is where I buy my groceries and it has two great coffee shops, along with a library that is open more than twice a week, parks to enjoy and golf courses to play. It is time for me to move. But that doesn’t make it any easier.
In the last couple of months I’ve found a very good stress reliever, besides my usual Clean Something or Taking a Long Walk. I stumbled across a yummy, delicious apple coffeecake recipe. It was published in the Farmland News of Archbold, Ohio. Farmland News is one of the newspapers that carry my column, The Recipe Exchange.
I was checking my column when I saw the coffeecake recipe. It was their featured recipe of the week and was submitted by Allison of Archbold. Purely by accident, I discovered that an over-large piece of coffeecake accompanied by a cup of French vanilla coffee is a sure cure for my anxiety and stress. Add an hour with a good book, a second cup of coffee and I can conquer anything life tosses my way.
A recent stressful week wasn’t good for my diet but I did look forward each afternoon to my dose of apple coffeecake and a hot cup of coffee. I recommend it to everyone who needs to relax with a few moments of sheer gastronomical delight.
Apple Coffee Cake
1 cup flour                                                1/4 cup shortening
1/2 teaspoon baking powder                    1 egg
1/2 teaspoon baking soda                        1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoon salt                                      1 Macintosh apple, peeled
1/2 cup sugar                                                   and chopped fine
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 c walnuts                                          2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup brown sugar                              1 teaspoon cinnamon

Sift together flour, baking powder, soda and salt. Set aside. Cream sugar and shortening until fluffy. Add egg and vanilla. Stir 1/2 of flour mixture into sugar mixture. Add sour cream. Stir in the rest of the flour mixture. Add chopped apple and spread in a greased and floured 8 x 8 inch square pan. Mix brown sugar and cinnamon. Cut in butter with a pastry blender. Stir in walnuts. Sprinkle over top of cake. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes.


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