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A Dash of Class

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Warm and cozy desserts

By Nora Sweat

By Nora Sweat

First, I want to thank the many readers who have called, sent e-mails and told me in person how much they enjoyed the column about my mom. Thank you for that. Now that fall is almost over and winter right around the corner, I will try to make a switch from foods common in summer and fall and concentrate on things that make us warm and cozy. I promise, I’ll do a column on soups after the first of the year. If you have a favorite, please e-mail it to me. This month, however, we’re back to apples. The Apple Cake recipe is left over from Delphine French’s column at the first of the month. The second recipe is a delicious chocolate cake that a friend who volunteers at the Hardin County Schools Performing Arts Center at John Hardin High School made for our “Church Basement Ladies” dinner show. Her name is Sue Crutcher and the cake is Chocolate Melt Away Cake. There were other delicious desserts served along with Back Home’s famous Coal Miner Cake and Carrot Cake. I hope to include those recipes later. As some of you know, I am retiring from the Hardin County Schools Performing Arts Center Nov. 26 after being there for seven years. I was there from the very beginning and will miss seeing so many friends I have made in that time. I hope this will give me time to work on a cookbook that I have wanted to do for a long, long time and spend more time with my husband. I’ll keep you posted on the progress of the cookbook. Remember, if you have lost a recipe or would like to have a copy of a particular recipe, just let me know and I will be glad to find it for you. Note: Last week, I wrote that I would reprint a recipe for Apple Upside Down Cake from earlier this month because some ingredients appeared to have been left out. One reader said hers turned out very hard. I need more time to investigate this and will reprint the corrected recipe in a later issue. If you have made it and it turned out good, please let me know. Nora Sweat is a lifelong resident of Hardin County and a retired home economics/family and consumer science teacher. She now works at the Hardin County Schools Performing Arts Center as secretary to the director and can be reached at norasweat@thenewsenterprise.com.     Apple Cake 3 cups all purpose flour 3 cups sugar ½ teaspoon salt 1 tablespoon baking soda 1 tablespoon cinnamon 4 eggs 1 ½ cups vegetable oil 1 tablespoon vanilla 1 ½ cups pecans 4 ounces shredded coconut 2 large apples, peeled and shredded 8 ounces crushed pineapple, drained Frosting: 8 ounces cream cheese, softened 5 tablespoons butter, softened 1 teaspoon vanilla 1 tablespoon milk 16 ounces confectioner’s sugar Grease two 9-inch cake pans and line with waxed paper on the bottom. Grease paper and set pans aside. Sift dry ingredients onto a separate sheet of waxed paper. Beat eggs in a large bowl; add oil and vanilla and mix again. Add dry ingredients. Stir; add nuts, coconut, apples and pineapple. Stir well. Pour into prepared pans and bake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes or until edges have pulled away from the sides and cake is springy to the touch. Cool cake for 10 minutes, and then remove from pan. Remove paper and cool thoroughly. For frosting: Beat softened cream cheese and butter until very soft. Add vanilla and milk and beat in powdered sugar gradually. Spread on cake.   Chocolate Melt-Away Cake 1 cup margarine ¼ cup cocoa 1 cup water ½ cup buttermilk 2 eggs, well beaten 2 cups sugar 2 cups self-rising flour 1 teaspoon vanilla Frosting: ½ cup margarine ¼ cup cocoa 3 cups Confectioner’s sugar ½ cup peanut butter 6 tablespoons buttermilk 1 teaspoon vanilla Place margarine, cocoa, water, buttermilk and eggs in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Remove from heat. Add sugar and flour and beat well; add vanilla. Pour into a greased and floured 13 x 9 x 2-inch pan and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Allow to cool. For frosting: Bring margarine and cocoa to a boil in a saucepan. Add confectioner’s sugar, peanut butter, buttermilk and vanilla. Beat until smooth, pour over cake. Chill.