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Fireworks and good cooks


By Laura Araujo Crockpot Apple Butter


This apple butter earned Janie Lou a fi rst place ribbon at the Comanche County Fair and a second place ribbon at the Oklahoma State Fair.


✓ Tart apples (enough to over fi ll the slow cooker) ✓ 3 cups granulated sugar ✓ 1 cup brown sugar ✓ 2 heaping teaspoons ground cinnamon ✓ ¼ heaping teaspoon ground cloves ✓ ¼ teaspoon salt


Peel, core and slice the apples. Fill the slow cooker half way with apples. In a medium bowl, combine the sugars, spices and salt. Add the mixture to the slow cooker. Add additional apples until the slow cooker is more than full (so the lid will NOT fi t on). Stir until the apples are coated with the sugar mixture and place the lid on top of the apples. Cook on high, stirring every hour until bedtime. At night, turn the temperature down to low and continue cooking. In the morning, stir or mash the apple butter with a potato masher. Continue cooking until the apple butter clings to a metal spoon. Transfer to canning jars and process in a hot water bath for 10 minutes.


Hummingbird Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting


One of Bill’s favorite desserts, this cake is also an Oklahoma State Fair blue- ribbon winner.


For the cake: ✓ 3 cups all-purpose fl our ✓ 1 teaspoon baking soda ✓ 1 teaspoon salt ✓ 2 cups granulated sugar ✓ 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon ✓ 3 eggs, beaten ✓ 1 cup vegetable oil ✓ 2 teaspoons vanilla extract


✓ 8-ounce can crushed pineapple, undrained ✓ 1 cup chopped pecans ✓ 2 cups chopped ripe banana


For the frosting:


✓ 8-ounce package room-tempera- ture cream cheese ✓ ½ cup room-temperature butter ✓ 16 ounces powdered sugar ✓ 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


Preheat the oven to 350°F. For the cake, combine the fl our, baking soda, salt, sugar and cinnamon in a large bowl. Add the eggs and oil, stirring with a wooden spoon until the dry ingredients are moistened. Do not use a mixer. Stir in the vanil- la, pineapple, pecans and bananas. Pour the batter into 3 greased and fl oured, 9-inch-round cake pans. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool in the pan for 10 minutes and transfer to cool- ing racks. For the frosting, combine the cream cheese and butter, beating until smooth. Add the powdered sugar and vanilla and beat until light and fl uffy. To assemble the cake, spread the frosting between each of the three layers and on the top and sides of the cake. The cake can be frozen and thawed at room temperature.


Bonus


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