Wednesday, November 19, 2014


It isn't too often that I make something really delicious that everyone really raves about but decide I want to make it again because it just didn't look like I thought it ought to look like. This is one of those times. 

I first made this Apple Cranberry Streusel a couple of weeks ago and took it to Hillcrest to share with the other volunteers downstairs. It was still warm when I took it and the volunteers really liked it. And I liked the taste also. (See pictures at the end.)

I guess I should just blame it on my OCD. I really dislike recipes that have a crumbly mixture on top (streusels and crisps, for example) but the mixture is too wet to really crumble. I have decided the difference is the consistency of the margarine. If you want it to crumble, the margarine should still be cold enough that it will remain in tiny pieces when mixed with the brown sugar/flour/oats ingredients, whatever the recipe calls for. I like to cut the margarine into thin slices to make this process easier either with a fork, pastry cutter, or your fingers.

What I have done with this post is provided you with pictures of the final results either way. You can decide which way you want to make it. Both ways produced a really delicious cake. 


1        box yellow cake mix (I used a sugar-free yellow cake mix)
2/3   cup natural apple cider 
1/2    cup (1 stick) margarine, at room temperature
3       eggs
3       cups diced baking apple
3/4   cup dried cranberries
2       tablespoons flour
Streusel Topping (see below)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Grease and flour a 9 x 13 - inch baking pan.

In a large mixing bowl, blend the cake mix, cider, margarine, and eggs on low speed for 30 seconds to blend. Then increase speed to medium and beat for three minutes.

In a medium bowl, combine the apples and cranberries with the flour; toss to coat. I did the dried cranberries with part of the flour first....
and then added the apples...

Gently stir into batter until well mixed.

Pour batter into pan.

Bake for 30 minutes, remove from oven 
and sprinkle streusel topping (below) evenly over the cake.

Return to oven and bake for another 15 minutes, or until cake tester comes out clean.


1             cup packed light brown sugar (I used 1/2 cup brown sugar blend)
1-1/2       cups flour
1 - 1-1/2  sticks of margarine, almost at room temperature , but still firm enough to slice
1/2          cups chopped pecans

In a medium bowl, combine all ingredients. Start with 1 stick of margarine and add up to 1/2 stick more for desired consistency. (I just used 1 stick since I had used the brown sugar blend which meant I didn't have as much ingredients in the mixture.)

Mix with a fork or your fingers until well blended and crumbly.



 *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *
The first time I made it....

The recipe called for the margarine to be softened for the streusel topping. I softened it in the microwave for 10 seconds and it was half melted and half soft.  When I mixed it with the dry ingredients, I didn't like the results of the "streusel". Crumbly to me means dry. My mixture was wet. The only good thing was there was so much that I was able to cover the entire cake with little globs.

It tasted really good, but as I said in the beginning, it didn't look like I thought it should. 
This is what an individual serving looked like.

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