The Dan’s Papers office apple bake-off has just two rules—it must be made with apple, and it must be baked. From there, it is a matter of creativity and baking prowess.
At the bake-off earlier this month, there were six entries: apple cheesecake, apple harvest bunt cake, salted caramel apple crumb bars, apple crisp pie, cinnamon sugar apple pie cake and apple “cat food” cake.
The judges were account manager Denise Bornschein, publisher Steven McKenna and Editor-in-Chief Dan Rattiner, and the adjudication was intense.
The judges did not have prior knowledge of who baked what. After tasting, re-tasting, and tasting again all of the desserts, the judges’ individual rankings were compiled and the top three were decided by a tight margin.
In the end, the “cat food” cake proved to only look like cat food. What it lacked it presentation, it more than made up for in taste. It was revealed that marketing manager Ellen Dioguardi was the baker behind this first place cake.
Senior editor and Hamptons Epicure columnist Stacy Dermont’s apple cheesecake was the first runner-up, and production manager Genevieve Horsburgh’s cinnamon sugar apple pie cake rounded out the top three.
The first, second and third place bakers went home with Dunkin’ Donuts gift cards.