Pumpkin, Spice and Everything Nice

About nine years ago, Maureen Heller stopped by La Vie En Rose to pick up a cake and discovered that the owner was interested in selling. That was all she “kneaded” to know. She soon took over the bakery-cafe at 10 W. Prospect St. in Waldwick, where she and her staff bring together European ambiance, creative cuisine and quality ingredients whipping up breakfast, lunch and all kinds of tempting baked goods. Here’s a peek at two of their classic fall treats!

Apple Cinnamon French Toast Casserole

Serves 10-12

Ingredients

1 large loaf French bread

8 extra-large eggs

3 1/2 cups whole milk

1/2 cup sugar

3 teaspoons bourbon vanilla extract

6-8 medium apples (Granny Smith or MacIntosh)

3 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon nutmeg

3 tablespoons butter

Confectioner’s sugar for dusting

Directions

The night before, slice the French bread into 1-inch slices (approximately 32 pieces). Spray a 9-by-13-inch glass pan with non-stick spray. Place the bread in the glass dish making two layers. In a separate bowl, beat eggs, sugar, milk and vanilla. Pour over bread. Peel, core and slice apples. Toss apples with cinnamon and nutmeg. Sauté apples in 2 tablespoons butter and place on top of bread to cover. Dot with 1 tablespoon butter. Cover with foil and refrigerate overnight.

The next morning, preheat the oven to 350 F and bake covered for 45 minutes. Remove foil and bake approximately 15 minutes more. Remove from oven and allow to rest 5-10 minutes. Dust with confectioner’s sugar and serve with heated maple syrup and a side of mixed fruit.

Pumpkin Coffee Cake

Ingredients

Crumb Topping:

3/4 cup all-purpose flour

6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold and cubed

3/4 cup packed light brown sugar

1/4 teaspoon plus 1/8 teaspoon salt

3 teaspoons ground cinnamon

Cake:

3 cups all-purpose flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

3/4 teaspoon baking powder

3/4 teaspoon salt

3 teaspoons ground cinnamon

3/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon plus 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves

1 1/2 cups pure pumpkin puree

3/4 cup packed light brown sugar

3/4 cup vegetable or canola oil

1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup

1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons whole milk

Confectioner’s sugar for dusting

Preheat oven to 350 F. Spray a 9-by-13-inch non-stick baking pan with baking spray or grease and lightly flour pan. Make crumb topping. In a bowl, toss flour, brown sugar, salt and cinnamon together. Cut the cold butter cubes using a fork or pastry blender. Mix to create clumps and crumbs. Set aside.

Make the cake. Whisk the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves together in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk the pumpkin, brown sugar, oil, maple syrup and milk together. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir until just combined. It will be very thick. Spoon batter into the prepared baking pan and spread evenly. Sprinkle with crumb topping and gently press crumbs down.

Bake cake for 30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool and then cut into squares. Dust with confectioner’s sugar.

La Vie En Rose Bakery Café
10 W. Prospect St., Waldwick
201.652.8880, LaVieEnRoseBakeryCafe.com