NOODLE KUGEL WITH GRAHAM CRACKER CRUST
12 ounces wide egg noodles
6 large eggs
16 ounces light sour cream
8 ounces light (Neufchâtel) cream cheese
16 ounces (1 percent) cottage cheese
1 (20-ounce) can crushed pineapple, drained
3⁄4 cup sugar + 2 tablespoons sugar, divided
2 teaspoons vanilla
3⁄4 teaspoon salt, divided
3⁄4 cup graham cracker crumbs
3 tablespoons melted butter
1⁄4 teaspoon cinnamon
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Coat a 9-inch-by-13-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
2. Cook the noodles according to the least time suggested on the package directions; drain but do not rinse.
3. Place the eggs in a food processor and pulse briefly. Add the sour cream, Neufchâtel, cottage cheese, pineapple, 3⁄4 cup of the sugar, vanilla and 1⁄2 teaspoon of the salt; run the machine until the mixture is smooth. Toss with the cooked noodles and transfer to the prepared baking dish.
4. Combine the remaining 2 tablespoons sugar, 1⁄4 teaspoon salt, graham cracker crumbs, melted butter, cinnamon and nutmeg: Work the mixture with your fingertips until the liquid is evenly distributed. Sprinkle over the noodles.
5. Bake 1 hour, until golden and bubbly. Makes 12 servings.
Nutritional analysis for each serving: 400 calories, 16 g protein, 51 g carbohydrates, 2 g fiber, 15 g fat, 8 g saturated fat, 468 mg sodium
TIP: The kugel may be assembled in advance and baked just before serving.
APPLE SPICE CAKE
2 pounds golden delicious apples (about 4 medium)
1⁄4 cup brown sugar
1⁄2 teaspoon cinnamon
1⁄4 teaspoon cardamom
1⁄4 teaspoon ground ginger
1⁄8 teaspoon nutmeg
1⁄8 teaspoon allspice
1⁄8 teaspoon ground clove
4 ounces (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Coat the inside of a 9-inch springform pan with cooking spray.
2. Peel the apples and cut into 1⁄2-inch thick wedges. Toss with the brown sugar, cinnamon, cardamom, ginger, nutmeg, allspice and clove.
3. Beat the butter with an electric mixer until light and fluffy; add the sugar and again beat until fluffy. Add the flour and baking powder and beat until just incorporated. Add an egg; beat briefly; add the second egg and vanilla and beat until just combined. Transfer the batter to the prepared pan. Arrange the apples decoratively over the batter.
4. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean, about 1 hour. Cool in the pan 20 minutes, run a knife around the edge and remove the sides of the pan. Cool on a wire rack. Makes 8 servings.
Nutritional analysis for each serving: 295 calories, 4 g protein, 45 g carbohydrates, 2 g fiber, 13 g fat, 81 mg sodium
JANE’S ORANGE-HONEY CAKE
3 cups all-purpose flour
1⁄2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1⁄4 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 cups honey
1 1⁄2 cups orange juice
1 1⁄4 cups pecans, coarsely chopped, divided
1 1⁄4 cups dried apricots, chopped in 1⁄4-inch pieces
1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Coat 2 (9-inch-by-5–inch) loaf pans with cooking spray.
2. Combine the flour, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and baking soda in a medium bowl. In a second bowl, combine the honey and orange juice, stirring to dissolve the honey. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry; stir in 1 cup of the pecans and the apricots. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pans and sprinkle with the remaining 1⁄4 cup pecans.
3. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes clean, about 1 hour 40 minutes. Remove from the oven, run a knife around the edges to loosen, and cool in pans on a rack before unmolding. Makes 24 servings.
Nutritional analysis for each serving: 205 calories, 3 g protein, 41 g carbohydrates, 2 g fiber, 4 g fat, 0 g saturated fat, 103 mg sodium