"Hey look what Mindy's cooking
for dinner tonight!"

Stuffed Baked Apples

Here is a simple dessert that can be cooked relatively quickly or in less than ideal solar cooking conditions. One can put this dish in the oven later in the afternoon (for example, after you have solarcooked the hot dogs at the picnic).  It also makes a good afternoon treat on sunny but cold Winter days .  

Simply replace the cores from 4 or 5 apples with mincemeat pie filling. Place in a covered container and bake for about an hour on a warm day, or longer if the ambient temperature is below 70 degrees Fahrenheit (20 degrees C.)

  Pumpkin Fruitcake
(A big hit every time guests come over.)

- ½ cup unsweetened apple/orange juice
- ½ cup raisins

- 1 cup dried figs (chopped)
- 1 cup pumpkin (cooked or canned)
- 2 Tbs. sugar
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 1 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 1 tsp. baking powder

- 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
- ½ tsp. ground nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp. ground allspice
- 1/4 tsp. ground cloves
- ½ cup chopped walnuts (optional -- my husband says mandatory)
- 2 tsp. grated orange rind

- Put a heat sink in the solar cooker to preheat.  (See Solar Baking Tip below.)

-Combine the juice, raisins, and figs in a bowl.  Let stand for an hour or overnight.

-Beat together the pumpkin, sugar and oil.  Stir in the fruit mixture.  Add the flour, baking soda, baking powder and spices.  Mix well.  Add the nuts and orange rind.  Stir to blend well.

-Pour batter into a 8 inch round or square pan or a 8 x 5 inch loaf pan. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out, more or less, clean (I like it moist).  This takes about an hour and a half for an 8 inch square pan or a couple of hours for a 8 x 5 inch loaf pan when cooked at midday. (The best solar cooking occurs between 10 AM to 2 PM local time.)

Solar Baking Tip:

A conventional oven cooks from the bottom up. A sun oven cooks from the top down. To make sure that your bread, muffins, or pizza isn't too moist on the bottom, preheat a heat sink in your solar cooker, for an hour or so, before you plan to bake. A heat sink is a brick, a tile, or a flat rock that is painted black. The heat sink gets hot in the cooker so you have a hot surface to later place your baking.

Important About Paint:

The interior surface of your sun oven needs to be repainted from time to time for the oven to work up to peak efficiency. Ordinary water based black house paint is OK, paint for barbeques is better, but do NOT use high temperature paint designed for car exhausts (it gives off toxic fumes).

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