World’s Fastest Gingerbread Applesauce Cake

Or, “Dessert: The Most Important Meal of the Day, and other weekly rhythms”

It’s Wednesday here, which means its Choir Day.  Mr. Mackerelsnapper arrives home by train about five minutes before First Shift of Kids have to leave for choir practice.  Families that eat together stay together, so our options were: try to eat a nice, family meal within five minutes, or… think of something else.  Since we can’t even be guaranteed to have the table set within five minutes, we came up with Wednesday Dessert. 

Here’s how it works:  First Shift of Kids skips after school snack and eats dinner about 45 minutes after getting home from school (they get home late, so this is not as much of a disaster as it might sound).  When Mr. Mackerelsnapper gets home, one of us takes First Shift off to choir while the other sets the table for the Second Shift.  Grown-up gets home, Second Shift eats dinner, then First Shift is acquired from choir practice.  Then we gather around the table, say our Wednesday night grace, and eat dessert. 

Dear Lord, we thank You for this dessert and for each other. 
Please bless the hands that made this dessert,
Bless the mouths that eat it,
And bless our hearts as well. 

Amen

Sometimes dessert is something home baked from recipes I’ll share here another time.  Sometimes if I’m really busy it’s just something I picked up at a grocery outlet or off the market’s reduced rack.  Usually, though, it comes out of the microwave.  I am not ashamed.  Tonight, for instance, we’re having a recipe I’ve kludged together from several sources: 

Gingerbread Applesauce Cake

2c AP Flour
1/2 tablespoon cinnamon
1/2 tablespoon ground ginger
1 tsp nutmeg
pinch of ground cloves
1 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
2 tablespoons water
1/2 c + 1 tablespoon oil
1/2 cup sugar (white works, but brown makes it richer)
1/2 c molasses or corn syrup (this makes it so moist, and the molasses makes it taste like Fall)
1 c unsweetened applesauce
1 tablespoon vanillla extract

Whisk flour, spices, soda and powder together in a medium bowl, leaving a well in the center.  Add the rest of the ingredients and stir until just combined.  Pour into a sprayed microwave safe baking dish (we use the bottom of our Tupperware stack cooker, with the baking cone in the center) and microwave on high for 7-10 minutes.  Slice and serve!  We freeze our leftovers and thaw them for breakfasts.

I’m also going shopping today for our Friday meal.  I operate on the Frugal Zealot’s Pantry Principle, so having a shopping list for a meal is now counterintuitive:  why would I practice a sacrifice by putting so much time into it and, well, sometimes even spending more money on it than I would a regular family meal?  These non-Lent meatless Fridays are teaching me that sometimes the sacrifice is not always about money.  There’s a mindfulness aspect as well that I think gets lost in our capitalistic mindset, that if I give something, then somebody better get some money out of it, even if that person is not me.

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About Erin McCole Cupp
Erin McCole Cupp is a wife, mother, and lay Dominican who lives with her family of vertebrates somewhere out in the middle of Nowhere, Pennsylvania. Her short writing has appeared in Canticle Magazine, The Catholic Standard and Times, Parents, The Philadelphia City Paper, The White Shoe Irregular, Outer Darkness Magazine, and the newsletter of her children’s playgroup. She is a contributor to CatholicMom.com and has been a guest blogger for the Catholic Writers Guild. Her other professional experiences include acting, costuming, youth ministry, international scholar advising, and waiting tables. When Erin is not writing, cooking or parenting, she can be found reading, singing a bit too loudly, sewing for people she loves, gardening in spite of herself, or dragging loved ones to visitors centers at tourist spots around the country. Find out more about her novels and other projects at erinmccolecupp.com .

2 Responses to World’s Fastest Gingerbread Applesauce Cake

  1. Pingback: Communion of Saints Flower Meadow Cake « Mrs. Mackerelsnapper, OP

  2. Pingback: Wednesday Dessert: Miryam Cookies « Mrs. Mackerelsnapper, OP

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