Friday, August 15, 2014

Cinnamon Applesauce Chocolate Chip Cake

My sister, Nan has been downsizing her cookbook collection.
In a conversation on Facebook, she asked me if I wanted some of her cookbooks. Now I am never going to turn down an offer of free cookbooks!

Two weeks later, Nan stopped in for a quick visit with Mom and Dad. I had forgotten our conversation. When Bill and I went to Mom's birthday party, I found two large bags of cookbooks waiting for me.

For a week and a half, I have been reading cookbooks from the Hawkeye state, Iowa. Yellow tabs now mark interesting regional recipes that I want to cook and share with you.

Today's recipe is adapted from the Favorite Recipes Tried and True cookbook from the Denmark Congregational United Church of Christ.

Ingredients for Cake

  • 1 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup salted butter, softened I just set the stick of butter on the counter until it is room temp.
  • 2 eggs, at room temperature Eggs will give you more volume if you let them warm to room temp.
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 Tbsp. baking cocoa
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2 cups applesauce, unsweetened

Ingredients for Cake Topping

  • 2 Tbsp. white sugar
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Cream 1/12 cup sugar and butter in a deep bowl. My serving bowl wasn't deep enough. The mixer kept trying to send bits of sugary butter out of the bowl. 
  • Add eggs and blend until light colored and fluffy.
  • Sift together flour, cocoa, soda, cinnamon, and salt.

If you do not own a sifter:  Use a small wire whisk and stir the flour in the bag with an upward motion to "fluff" the flour. Next, scoop the fluffy flour into the measuring cup and level the top of the full measuring cup with the flat edge of a butter knife. Do not shake the flour in the measuring cup to level it. 
  • Blend the dry ingredients together with a wire whisk

  • Add a small amount of blended dry ingredients to the creamed butter mixture and stir in.
  • Then add part of the applesauce and stir in
  • Repeat the two preceeding steps until all of the dry ingredients and applesauce have been mixed into the butter mixture.
  • Pour the batter into a greased 9" x 9" square pan. I use a nonstick pan and do not grease it.
  • Combine topping ingredients and sprinkle on top of the cake batter.

  • Place the pan in the 350 degree F oven. 
  • Bake for 30 - 35 minutes. I baked my cake for 30 minutes. The four center pieces had a custard layer between the crunchy sugar chocolate chip topping and cake that I loved. 

  • Cool completely before cutting. 
  • Vanilla ice cream would be a perfect accompaniment for this cake. 
I did not add any additional frosting. The hubby and I loved the soft, dark chocolate flavor and golden brown crunchy top. 

NOTE: The cake will collect moisture if it is wrapped too tightly with plastic wrap and the baked sugar will not be crunchy.

Yield: 12-16 squares of amazing homemade happiness!