Be happy and eat dessert first, especially this year’s winning recipes. Linda Wagner placed first in the division with her Harvey Walbanger Cake, while Denise Hench placed second with her Apfel Kuchen.

Both dishes are a delight to the taste buds.

Harvey Wallbanger Cake


1 package yellow cake mix

1 small package vanilla instant pudding

1/2 cup cooking oil

4 eggs

1/4 cup vodka

1/4 cup Galliano Liquer

3/4 cup orange juice


Mix all ingredients together and beat for 4 minutes. Pour into well-greased bundt pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 40-50 minutes. Dust with confectioner’s sugar or frost with with an orange glaze.

Linda Wagner, Defiance


Apfel Kuchen


1 1/2 cups all purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 large well-beaten egg

1/2 cup of whole or 2 percent milk

1/2 cup melted butter

1/2 cup white sugar for kuchen batter and 1/2 cup white sugar for topping

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

5-6 tart, firm apples peeled and sliced (Granny Smith apples work well)


In bowl, mix flour, baking soda, salt and 1/2 cup sugar with fork. In separate bowl, mix the egg, milk and melted butter together Stir the bowl of wet ingredients into the dry ingredient bowl. Pour batter into a 9x9 lightly-greased pan. Press the sliced apples firmly and deeply into the batter in rows. Top with 1/2 cup sugar and cinnamon. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes. Serve with freely-whipped cream if you desire. Serves 6–9.

Denise Hench, Defiance





1 cup plain Kroger Almond milk (warm)

One of the three packages of Fleischmanns original dry yeast (comes in a three-pack package)

1/3 cup Kroger Apriva sweetener

1/3 cup I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter Light

2 large eggs

½ teaspoon salt

4 cups bleached all purpose flour

Filling (applesauce)

2 cups applesauce cooked down at a slow boil to about one cup or less, which takes about 2-3 hours.

2 tablespoons of cinnamon

5 tablespoons of Apriva

3 tablespoons of I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter Light


Add cinnamon, Apriva and butter to applesauce and let cool.

Mix warm almond milk and yeast together in warm bowl and set aside. In a separate bowl, use a mixer to mix 1/3 cup Apriva and 1/3 cup butter. Add two eggs and salt. Slowly add 4 cups of flour and mix thoroughly. Add almond milk and yeast mix. Place mixture in another bowl mixture sprayed with Pam, cover with plastic wrap and let sit for one hour. Roll dough out to about 12 by 16 inches.

Spread applesauce filling on dough. Roll into a log and cut into 1 ½ inch-wide rolls. Let dough rise in 8 x 8-inch sprayed baking pan for 30 minutes. Bake at 350 degrees for 22-28 minutes until light brown. Let cool for 15 minutes.


Take 1 ½ cups powdered sugar and add ½ teaspoon vanilla and enough I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter Light to make a thin frosting. Put a small amount of frosting on cinnabons, let cool and add more frosting later if desired. Calories per cinnabon are about 220.

Rayne Heffner, Paulding


Peanut Butter



Crust: 1 1/2 cups flour, 1 1/2 sticks margarine, 1 cup chopped nuts any kind.

Filling: 8 ounces of cream cheese

2/3 cup creamy peanut butter

12 ounces Cool Whip topping

1 1/2 cups powdered sugar

1/2 cup milk.


Mix crust ingredients and bake in a 9x13-inch pan for 15 minutes at 350 degrees. Cool. In a bowl, whip cream cheese until creamy. Beat in powdered sugar and peanut butter. Slowly add milk, blending thoroughly. Fold in Cool Whip and then pour mixture onto baked crust. Sprinkle with (optional) chopped nuts or shaved chocolate. Refrigerate or freeze until ready to serve —about an hour or so. Serves 12.

Mary Kaye Clark, Wauseon





1 cup white sugar

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 cups flour

2 eggs

1 cup vanilla Greek yogurt

4 cups fresh or frozen rhubarb

1 tablespoon flour

Ingredients for topping:

3/4 cup brown sugar

5 tablespoons real butter (cold)

1/4 cup flour

1 teaspoon cinnamon


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spread a 13x9 baking dish with cooking spray and dust with flour. Set aside. Wash and trim fresh rhubarb and dry with paper towels. Cut into 1/8 to 1/4 -inch slices, then toss with 1 tablespoon flour. Set aside. In a separate bowl, mix sugar, baking soda, salt and 2 cups flour. Set aside. In another mixing bowl, blend eggs and yogurt. Gradually add dry ingredients. Blend— the batter will be very thick. Hand fold in the rhubarb. Pour into baking pan.

For the topping, with a pastry blender or fork cut butter into brown sugar. Add flour and cinnamon. Sprinkle on top of batter. Bake 45 minutes or until done. Test with a toothpick. Serves 12.

Linda Hanawalt, Defiance



Almond Torte


1/2 cup butter

1/3 cup sugar

1/4 teaspoon almond extract

1 cup flour

1 rounded tablespoon almond paste or chopped almonds

Directions for pastry shell:

Cream butter, sugar and extract. Blend in flour. Spread dough into 90-inch pie pan. Bake at 450 degrees for 10 minutes.

Ingredients for filling:

8 ounces cream cheese

1/4 cup sugar

1 egg

1/2 teaspoon almond extract

15-20 dried apricots


Cream together cream cheese, sugar, egg and extract. Pour into baked pastry shell. Use 15–20 dried apricots simmered in water 10 minutes or 1-15 ounce can apricots, drained. Slice apricots and arrange on top of filling.

Ingredients for crumble topping:

3 tablespoons flour

3 tablespoons sugar

3 tablespoons butter

1/4 cup slivered almonds

Mix together and pace on top of apricots Add ¼ cup slivered almonds. Bake at 400 degrees for 25 minutes.

Karen Kent, Defiance


Chocolate Peanut Butter Magic Bars

Ingredients: Cookie layer

1 pouch (1 pound, 1.5 ounce) peanut butter cookie mix

3 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 tablespoon water

1 large egg

Ingredients for topping

1 -14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk

2 tablespoons cocoa powder

1 -11.5 ounce bag chocolate chips (2 cups)

2 cups salted peanuts


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly spray 13x9-inch baking pan with cooking spray. In a large bowl, stir together cookie mix, oil, water, and egg until soft dough forms. Press dough in bottom of prepared pan. In a small bowl stir together the sweetened condensed milk and cocoa powder until well combined. Sprinkle chocolate chips and peanuts on top of cookie dough. Pour condensed milk on top in even layer. Bake cookies about 25-30 minutes or until light golden brown around edges and center is set. Serves 36.

Traci Flory, Defiance


Butterfinger Pecan Muffins


1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats

1 cup milk

1/2 cup whole wheat flour

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1/3 cup packed brown sugar

3 teaspoons baking powder

Scant 1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

1 egg

1/4 cup olive oil

1/3 cup Butterfinger pieces

1/3 cup roasted and salted pecans, coarsely chopped


Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Place paper liners in muffin pans that hold 12 muffins total. In a large mixing bowl, combine oats and milk and let stand 10 minutes. In second bowl, stir together both flours, sugar, baking powder, salt, Butterfinger pieces and pecans until well-blended and set aside. In a third bowl or large measuring cup, whisk together the oil, egg and vanilla all blended. Stir into oats and milk mixture and blend well with fork.

All at one time, add the bowl of dry ingredients into the wet and use a fork (not an electric mixer) to combine. Mix together until most of the dry ingredients are barely blended. Do not overmix. Fill muffin cups 2/3 full and bake at 425 degrees for 20 minutes. Turn out of pan onto wire rack to cool.

These muffins freeze well. Two can be thawed on platter in the microwave on the defrost setting for 1 1/2 minutes.

Barb Sedlock, Defiance





1 box German chocolate cake mix (prepare as directed below)

1/3 cup oil

3 eggs

1 1/3 cups water

2/3 cup shredded coconut

2/3 cup chocolate chips

1/2 cup chopped pecans

1/2 cup butter

8 ounces cream cheese

1 pound powdered sugar

Directions: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9x13-inch pan. Sprinkle the coconut, chocolate chips and pecans on the bottom of the pan. Mix the German chocolate cake mix with the oil, eggs and water. Pour the cake mix on top of the coconut/chocolate/pecan layer.

In saucepan, melt the butter and cream cheese. Beat in 1 pound of powdered sugar until it’s smooth with the butter/cream cheese. Spread this mixture on top of the German chocolate cake in the pan and swirl into the cake mix using a knife. Bake for 35-45 minutes.

It’s done when it doesn’t wobble in the pan if you shake it. The toothpick test won’t work because the cake should be gooier in nature.

Jan Lindsay, Archbold


Oh My, Coconut Cranberry Bars


1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs

1/2 cup melted butter

1 can sweetened condensed milk

1 1/2 cup sweetened dried cranberries

1 1/4 cup pecan halves

1 cup flaked coconut

3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips

3/4 cup white chocolate chips


Set oven at 350 degrees. Line a 9x13 pan with parchment paper and leave a 2-inch overhang. Mix together cracker crumbs and butter in a bowl and press into pan. Stir remaining ingredients together and spread over graham cracker crust. Bake until golden brown, about 25-28 minutes.

Use the parchment overhang to lift and transfer to a wire rack to cool. Cut into 36 bars. Recipe keeps 3 days in the refrigerator.

Gloria Shininger, Sherwood


Maple Pecan Cheesecake


1 cup Pecan Sandies crumbs (I use a food processor)

5 tablespoons butter, melted

1 tablespoon sugar

1/4 cup ground pecans

3- 8-ounce packages low fat cream cheese

1 cup packed brown sugar

3 eggs

2 tablespoons flour

2 tablespoons maple flavoring

1/2 cup chopped pecans

1/4 cup honey

1 tablespoon butter

1 tablespoon maple flavoring

1/2 cup chopped pecans

Directions: Combine the first four ingredients and press onto the bottom only of a greased 9-inch springform pan. Refrigerate. In a mixing bowl beat cream cheese and sugar. Add eggs and beat until smooth. Add flour and maple flavoring and mix well. Stir in ground pecans. Pour mixture onto crust, bake at 350 degrees for 50-55 minutes or until center is nearly set. Turn off oven, open door and leave cheesecake in oven for 1 hour.

Remove from oven. Cool completely. Refrigerate overnight.

For topping: Combine honey, butter and maple flavoring in small saucepan. Cook and stir over medium heat for 2 minutes and add chopped pecans. Cook 2 minutes longer. Mixture will be thin. Spoon over cheesecake.

Carefully remove sides of pan before serving. Refrigerate leftovers. Serves 12.

Jean Lee, Defiance



Brownie Pizza


1- 18-ounce box fudge brownie mix (plus ingredients to prepare)

1- 8 ounce package cream cheese, softened

1- 8 ounce can crushed pineapple, drained and with juice reserved

2 tablespoons sugar

2 bananas, sliced and tossed in lemon juice to prevent browning

1 cup fresh strawberries, sliced

2 kiwis, peeled and sliced

1 cup chopped nuts

Chocolate ice cream topping or chocolate syrup for drizzling


Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease a 15-inch pizza pan. Prepare brownie mix according to directions on box. Pour onto prepared pan, bake for 20 minutes or until done. Remove from oven and cool.

Beat cream cheese and sugar together in bowl and then add pineapple. Use any reserved pineapple juice now if needed soften mixture to good spreading consistency.

Spread mixture over brownie crust. Arrange bananas, strawberries, and kiwi slices on top of cream mixture. Sprinkle with chopped nuts and drizzle with chocolate ice cream topping. Refrigerate before serving. Slice as you would pizza. Serves 8-10.

Barb Schindler, Napoleon


Smeary Smores


1 package of fudge-striped cookies

1 package milk chocolate or semisweet chips

1 bag miniature marshmallows

Butter to coat pan


In a 9x12-inch buttered baking dish, crumble cookies in large chunks, then spread chocolate chips on top of cookies.

Sprinkle marshmallows over top of chips and bake at 375 degrees for 8-10 minutes or until marshmallows are browned.

Let cool and cut into squares Gooey and delicious! Serves 12.

Jill Hatcher, Cecil

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