DEAR JEANNE: This recipe looks and sounds delicious. I can’t imagine the calories, fat or carb count. I’m hoping you can revise it to allow us to enjoy it without guilt. Thanks! — Shirley Turnipseed, San Diego



1 cup packed light-brown sugar

1 cup granulated sugar

1 1/2 cups vegetable oil

3 eggs

3 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

2 teaspoons cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon salt

5 Granny Smith or golden delicious apples, cored, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces

1 1/4 cups chopped pecans or walnuts

2 1/4 teaspoons vanilla extract


4 tablespoons butter

1/4 cup granulated sugar

1/4 cup light-brown sugar

Pinch salt

1/2 cup cream

1. Preheat oven to 325. Butter and flour a 9-by-13-inch pan.

2. To prepare the cake, beat both sugars and the oil in a mixing bowl until very well blended. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Sift together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt; gradually add to egg mixture, mixing just until blended. Stir in apples, nuts and vanilla; pour into pan.

3. Bake for 50 to 75 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool in the pan while preparing the glaze.

4. To prepare the glaze, melt the butter in a saucepan over low heat. Stir in both sugars and salt; cook over medium-low heat for 2 minutes. Add cream and boil for 2 minutes, stirring constantly.

5. Poke holes in the cake with a skewer or toothpick. Pour on the glaze. Serve warm or at room temperature. Top with whipped cream or ice cream, if desired.

Makes 12 servings.


DEAR SHIRLEY: I get so many requests for versions of this cake that I do it very often. I never have done one with the caramel sauce, and I find that it really is not necessary, as the cake itself is so good. If you wish to use it, fat-free caramel sauce for ice cream is available. Just add the calories to the cake if you use it.


1 egg

3 egg whites

3/4 cup brown sugar

3/4 cup granulated sugar

2 tablespoons canola oil

3/4 cup low-fat buttermilk

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 cup all-purpose flour

2 cups oatmeal, ground in a blender

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

5 apples, cored, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces

1/3 cup pecans, chopped

Fat-free caramel sauce (optional)

1. Preheat the oven to 350. Spray a 9-by-13-inch pan with nonstick cooking spray and sprinkle with flour, or use a spray with added flour. Set aside.

2. In a large bowl, beat egg and egg whites; beat in the sugars, then beat in the oil, buttermilk and vanilla.

3. Combine the flour, ground oatmeal, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg.

4. Beat the flour mixture into the egg mixture. Stir in the apples and the nuts.

5. Spread batter into the prepared pan. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, or until a sharp knife inserted into the middle comes out clean. Top with caramel sauce to serve, if desired.

Makes 12 servings.

Each serving contains approximately: Original recipe: 695 calories; 44 g fat; 77 mg cholesterol; 272 mg sodium; 71 g carbohydrates; 8 g protein; 3 g fiber. Revised recipe: 360 calories; 6 g fat; 18 mg cholesterol; 328 mg sodium; 73 g carbohydrates; 5 g protein; 4 g fiber.


Jeanne Jones is the author of 33 cookbooks, most recently “Cooking from the Cupboard” (Rodale Press). For more information, you can go to her website, Send your recipe for revision to: Cook It Light, P.O. Box 1212, La Jolla, CA 92038. Please include a stamped (61 cents), self-addressed envelope.

– King Features


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