Friday, July 26, 2013


   The Boryeong Mud Festival is an annual festival which takes place during the summer in Boryeong, a town around 200 km south of Seoul, South Korea. The first Mud Festival was staged in 1998 and, by 2007, the festival attracted 2.2 million visitors to Boryeong.
   The mud is taken from the Boryeong mud flats, and trucked to the Daecheon beach area, where it is used as the centrepiece of the 'Mud Experience Land'. The mud is considered rich in minerals and used to manufacture cosmetics. The festival was originally conceived as a marketing vehicle for Boryeong mud cosmetics.
   Although the festival takes place over a period of around two weeks, it is most famous for its final weekend, which is popular with Korea's western population. The final weekend of the festival usually falls on the second weekend in July.

History of the Festival

   In 1996 a range of cosmetics was produced using mud from the Boryeong mud flats. The cosmetics were said to be full of minerals, bentonites, and germaniums, all of which occur naturally in the mud from the area.
   In order to promote these cosmetics, the Boryeong Mud Festival was conceived. Through this festival, it was hoped people would learn more about the mud and the cosmetics. The festival has become popular with both Koreans and western tourists, as well as American Military personnel stationed in the country, and foreign English teachers working in Korea.
   The festival attracted some controversy in 2009 when a group of school children attending the festival developed skin rashes after contact with the mud.


   For the period of the festival several large attractions are erected in the seafront area of Daecheon. These include a mud pool, mud slides, mud prison and mud skiing competitions. Colored mud is also produced for body painting. A large stage is erected on the beach, which is used for live music, competitions and various other visual attractions.
   A small market runs along the seafront selling cosmetics made using the mud from Boryeong. Various health and beauty clinics offer massages, acupuncture and other treatments utilising the medicinal qualities of the mud. The festival is closed with a large firework display.


That late summer/early fall feeling is beginning at my house! The cicadas are singing and my ginger lilies are beginning to bloom...always a sign that fall is on the way! And I have also noticed that interest in fall is beginning to pick up around blogland and on Pinterest, too.  Hey...you need a little lead time to create your fall decor! Sooo...I decided I would do a little series of posts on my most popular fall projects for those who may have missed them or who are new to my blog. And first on my list are these...…my Country Living inspired d├ęcoupage pumpkins! I knew this would be my next project when I spied...


...this on the cover of their October 2011 issue! Isn’t this simply gorgeous?  I love the way the pumpkins look as though they have been covered with fabric even though it is actually paper!  Sooo...the magazine hopped in my cart and went straight home with me! Next, I went right to work assembling what I needed. And, as luck would have it, just about everything was half price at Michael’s…including the cream fauxpumpkins!

I decided that a few things about my pumpkins would be different from those inCountry Living. First, I chose a damask pattern rather than toile for one of them. There’s already so much toile in my house and I wanted these pumpkins to stand out. And then, I also decided that I would use the cream pumpkins just as they are rather than paint them white. That just fits better with my decor. Other than that, for the most part, I followed their instructions, found online here.


For the damask pumpkin:  

1. I chose a fabric with a simple damask pattern that would be easy to work with…Premier Prints Avery in Greenage…and bought just enough to have one repeat of the design. I scanned and printed it, making several copies. Remember…you are working with paper copies of fabric…not fabric!
2. Next, I cut them out and spaced them according to the design, taping them to the pumpkin. 
3. I removed the tape and attached each piece of the design to the pumpkin one by one, using matte finish Mod Podge…my new BFF. (Mine was a 25 cent yard sale find.) The process requires some finesse and patience and, quite honestly, it helps if you have some experience with d├ęcoupaging  spheres.
4. Give the pumpkin a thin all-over coat, let dry and you are done! 
This was the easiest one, so if you only want one, I suggest this one!


The calico print pumpkin was a little harder:

1. I couldn’t find any fabric that would do, so I bought scrap booking paper and scanned and printed it since scrap booking paper is too thick and hard to work with. 
2. I cut lengthwise pieces about  1 1/2 inches wide, working within the pattern. I attached them with Mod Podge as before. It helps to cut alternating notches about 1/3 of the way in to allow for the curves of the pumpkin.
3. Eventually, the strips got off a little and I had to straighten them back up by piecing in a few odd shapes. Here, you can see an empty spot I am about to cover. 
4. Once again, I finished with another final all-over coat of Mod Podge and…taa daa! It’s not perfect, but all of the pumpkins seemed to have at least one really good side…thank goodness!


The vintage-y pumpkin quilt design was downloaded from Country Living’s web site. I followed their instructions and measured and calculated the size and number of designs I would need and adjusted. A program such as Photoscape…free to download…was really helpful here, since I had to adjust the color a little also.  I found it helpful to make small pencil marks on the pumpkin for the top and bottom of the design.  The little yellow lines are perfect places to cut in some notches to allow for the curve of the pumpkin. If it’s not perfect, it’s OK since you can’t see all sides of the pumpkin at once!  A final coat of Mod Podge to the whole pumpkin and you are through!


I didn't have a suitable stand for the pumpkins, so I made my own by painting a small flower pot and a larger saucer and hot-gluing them together. They were also half-price at Michael’s! I used an ivory spray paint since my pumpkins are cream.


Apfelkuchen. Or Apple Cake. Or Bavarian Apple Cake. OR “Happy Apple Cake” as I’m calling it….

Apple Kuchen 10 1024x1024 Apfelkuchen ( Bavarian Apple Cake) for #TwelveLoaves

This was a common treat when I visited my grand parents as a kid, so was homemade apple strudel, spaetzle and all kinds of yummy German/Austrian/Bavarian things to eat. My grandmother was an excellent baker and made everything from scratch. My mom was telling me how she even made her own phyllo dough for the strudel. That is a LOT of work, something I hope to try one day.
I saw Barbara from Creative Culinary, post this pear quick bread the other day with the hashtag, #TwelveLoaves, and I asked her what it was all about. She told me it was a monthly recipe group all about breads and that there was a different flavor theme each month, but we could make our own twist on it, not have to follow the exact same recipe as everyone else. November’s theme is apples and pears, and well what do you know? I still have a HUGE bag of apples that we picked from our trip to the apple orchard not too long ago. So apple bread it was. Barbara also told me that it didn’t have to be limited to just bread that its merely a suggestion and that anything from waffles, to quick bread, to cake would count. So I went on a little search for inspiration. I have some apple cider in my freezer still so I was thinking maybe an apple cider bread; but then when I was looking online I came across some recipes for Apfelkuchen and knew I had to make it, I mean after all I am Austrian and my mom did grow up in Germany and they have like some of the best pastries in the world. Especially apple pastries

Apple Kuchen 2 1017x1024 Apfelkuchen ( Bavarian Apple Cake) for #TwelveLoaves

To keep with the bread theme, I made these into two smaller loaves than a traditional round cake. Since its a bread theme with #Twelveloaves I thought making them more like a quick bread than a cake would be appropriate. These were a bit of a challenge to make, but so worth it. This is a lightly sweetened yeast raised cake, and the apples bake just enough to turn mushy at all. I hate that. Mushy apples. Ew.

Apple Kuchen 4 685x1024 Apfelkuchen ( Bavarian Apple Cake) for #TwelveLoaves

I had to scrape the topping off the tops of the apples so you could see them, since that is part of the decor of the cake, and I think it looks really neat. I cut into the cake for a cute “slice” pic and couldn’t stop laughing at what I found. My husband was cracking up too.

Apple Kuchen 5 757x1024 Apfelkuchen ( Bavarian Apple Cake) for #TwelveLoaves

Dude. The cake is SMILING at us.  I so didn’t plan this. When I put down the first layer of apples in the cake, I didn’t realize how much the cake was going to rise, this was my first time with a yeast cake, and I didn’t layer in enough apples. I was working quickly since we were making dinner at the same time and I had a cramped work space, hungry kids, hungry mom ( that would be me) etc so I was kind of rushing. So when we cut into the cake and realized the first apple layer was closer to the top than expected I was dying laughing that it made it look like the cake had a face.

Apple Kuchen 6 1024x957 Apfelkuchen ( Bavarian Apple Cake) for #TwelveLoaves

A closer look. Maybe Apfelkuchen really means ” happy apple cake”.  Maybe its my grandmother smiling at me through the cake for making one of her recipes. I lost her when I was 16, so I hope I made her proud.
Lots of other tasty apple and pear breads and cakes are posted on Creative Culinary and Cake Duchess, the two hosts of #Twelveloaves, and posts also mentioned on #TwelveLoaves on Twitter. Come join in the fun, the group is open to anyone. I think!

Apple Kuchen 9 685x1024 Apfelkuchen ( Bavarian Apple Cake) for #TwelveLoaves

We cut another piece to show what the apples in the top looked like, and also because I told my husband there was no way I could eat the piece that was smiling at us. He said he had no problem eating it. Figures. Typical guy.

5.0 from 1 reviews
Apfelkuchen ( Bavarian Apple Cake) for #TwelveLoaves
Recipe type: Cake, Quick Bread, Breakfast
Prep time:  
Cook time:  
Total time:  
Serves: 16
A lightly sweetened yeast raised German apple cake like grandma used to make.
  • Ingredients
  • 2 ¼ c all purpose flour (281 g)
  • ½ c sugar (100 g)
  • 1 packet of rapid rise yeast, or active dry yeast
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¾ c milk (178ml)
  • ⅓ cup butter, softened (76g)
  • 1 large egg, room temp
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract (5 ml)
  • 2 cups apples, peeled, cored and sliced thin
  • 1 tsp lemon juice (5 ml)
  • 1 tbsp sugar(14g)
  • 4-8 small apples, peeled, halved, and tops sliced thin but not all the way through (8 if using a larger pan)
  • Topping
  • ½ c sugar (100g)
  • 1 tsp cinnamon (.68 g)
  • 2 tbsp cold butter(30g), cut into small pieces
  1. Grease either 2 8X4 loaf pans or a 9X13 pan with butter.
  2. Combine the thin apple slices with the lemon juice and sugar,stirring to coat well and set aside.
  3. Combine the topping ingredients in a small bowl and mix with a fork until crumbly.
  4. In a bowl of a stand mixer combine half of the flour, sugar, yeast and salt and mix to combine.
  5. Heat the butter and milk together until the butter is melted and the temperature is 120 deg f. Slowly add this to the flour mixture. Beat on medium until combined, about 2 minutes.
  6. Add in the egg, vanilla and mix well again and then add the rest of the flour and mix on low until a stiff batter forms.
  7. Spread a little less than half the mixture on the bottom of the prepared pans, it is pretty stiff and stretchy so work slowly to not over work the dough. Place the apple slices over the dough and cover with the remaining dough. Gently press the apple halves into the top of the dough, arranging in any pattern desired. Sprinkle the topping over the batter avoiding the tops of the sliced apples. Cover pan with a towel and let rest in a warm, draft free area until batter has doubled in size, at least an hour
  8. Preheat oven to 350 deg f
  9. Uncover the pan or pans and bake for 20-30 minutes or until done. Let cool in pans on a wire rack. If made in loaf pans carefully remove from pans and set on a plate to cool. Can be served room temperature or warmed with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
Traditional German or Bavarian baking uses Vanillezucker or vanilla sugar. It may be hard to find the packets of it here in the states, perhaps at specialty bake shops or places like Cost Plus World Market. I substituted it for a little more sugar and the vanilla extract. This was traditionally made in a bowl and mixed with a spoon. I saved your arm by using a stand mixer. Electricity is a good thing. But it still can be mixed the traditional way.

Apple Kuchen 1 939x1024 Apfelkuchen ( Bavarian Apple Cake) for #TwelveLoaves