Franciscan

Baking with Br. Chris

Fifth of seven parts

When guests drop by

Think fast: Company’s coming! When you need something sweet and you need it fast, these two staples fill the bill.
For baby boomers, nothing says "home" like Pineapple Upside-Down Cake. Br. Chris Cahill shared his mom’s recipe; spruced up with candied cherries, it’s a festive holiday dessert.

PINEAPPLE UPSIDE-DOWN CAKE
(Makes 8 servings)

1/2 cup butter or margarine
2 cups brown sugar
1 can sliced pineapple, walnuts and candied cherries optional
4 eggs
1 cup sugar
1 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking powder

Preheat oven to 350° F. Melt butter in a 10 or 12 inch cast iron skillet or a cake pan of similar size and cover with brown sugar, spreading evenly. Place a pineapple slice in the center and put other slices around the center. Fill spaces with nuts and cherries if desired. Stir remaining ingredients until well mixed. Pour into skillet on top of fruit.

Bake about 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

When cool, turn upside-down onto a round cake plate or platter.

(Recipe from Ann Kemper Cahill.)

Who doesn’t like peanut butter? These are Br. Chris’ go-to cookies: They’re staples for bake sales and good to keep on hand when guests drop by.

CRISSCROSS PEANUT BUTTER COOKIES
(Makes 3-4 dozen, depending on size of dough balls)

1 cup shortening
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup brown sugar
2 eggs, well beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 cup peanut butter

Mix shortening and sugars well. Add the eggs, vanilla, flour, salt and baking powder, and then the peanut butter. Mix well and knead. Roll into balls the size of walnuts. Place on a cookie sheet. Flatten with a fork, crisscross style.

Bake at 400 F° for 5 to 10 minutes (depending on size).

SATURDAY: Gifts from the kitchen

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