Sister Mary Kateri's Award Winning Cranapple Coffee Cake
Amanda Grattan

Recipe as written in the newspaper:

Coffee Cake:

3 oz. cream cheese

4 tablespoons margarine

2 cups biscuit mix

1/3 cup milk


1 cup fresh cranberries, chopped

1 cup apple, chopped

1 tablespoon granulated sugar

1 tablespoon brown sugar

1/8 teaspoon cinnamon

1/8 teaspoon nutmeg


1 cup confectionary sugar

1 1/2 tablespoons milk

1/2 teaspoon vanilla


Mix first three ingredients, cream cheese, margarine and biscuit mix with a pastry blender until a course meal is formed.

Add milk, mixing with a fork.

Knead dough on a floured pastry board. roll dough into a 12"x 8" rectangle.

Transfer the rectangle of dough to a greased cookie sheet.

Prepare filling by mixing cranberries, apples, sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg.

Spoon filling down the center of the rectangle of dough.

Using scissors, cut 2 1/2" strips of dough every inch along both sides of the length of the rectangle.

Fold strips over the filling, alternating sides.

Bake in oven for about 20 minutes at 425 F.

Allow coffee cakes to cool and then drizzle with icing of confectionary sugar, milk, and vanilla. Approximately 12 servings.


Cranberry Dish wins prize for Bay View sister

By Bert Wade

Sister Mary Kateri is the most popular person right now at St. Mary's Academy - Bay View. She has just learned she has won, with the help of 12 girls in one of her food labs, a 13-day New York to Quebec to Bermuda cruise. 

Naturally each of the girls and all of Sister Kateri's friends are trying to influence her decision on a traveling mate.

The prize is for winning first place in a national fresh cranberry recipe contest sponsored by Ocean Spray to celebrate the 350th "birthday" of the use of cranberries on American Thanksgiving menus. The contest was open only to home economics teachers and their classes. 

Sister Kateri teaches two food labs, with 12 girls in each, and both spent a month on the contest project, studying the history and nutritive value of the cranberry and the ways it can be used. The girls tried many recipes, both original and modified, before they decided which to enter in the contest. The winning Cranapple Coffeecake was the unanimous choice of both the labs, but they could only enter that, so the second choice and entry was for Poka-dot Muffins. 

The cranberry -apple filling was the tricky part of the coffee cake recipe. The girls tried many variations until they accomplished the "perfect consistency and taste.  They ground and chopped the ingredients by hand and machine until they determined just the right size for both eye appeal and taste. The cranberries they decided must be cut hand into quarters to be just right. They tried brown sugar, white sugar and Sucarayl, and the combinations thereof, and the best effort was small (one tablespoon), equal measures of brown and white. 

The brown sugar gives the apples a hint of apple-pie flavor, explained Sister Kateri, as the girl made another sample of their prize product. It was yummy, just tart enough to be very appealing, the apples providing a natural sweetness that completed the stronger fruit. 

Each of the girls in the winning class will receive a copy of "Five Seasons Cranberry Book," a publication of Better Homes and Gardens. Sister Kateri said the teacher probably got the top prize because it was she who was responsible for setting up the class project and writing up the results, which had to be submitted along with the recipe. 

"I didn't really think of anything coming from our entry," said Sister Kateri, "except maybe an honorable mention because we had done a lot of class work on it." So when the letter arrived the other day announcing the award, no one was more surprised than teacher. 

The feeling of astonishment has not worn off yet, and the night after the announcement arrived Sister Kateri got very little sleep. " I kept waking up thinking that in the morning, I would find it all was a mistake."

Home economics is only an elective at Bay View, which is a college preparatory school for girls, and because of limited facilities in the department, enrollment is very restricted. Only seniors can take the foods course. 

The award-winning girls are Michaela Burke and Ann Walsh of Rumford, Anne Marie Butterfield and Gail Cinquegrana of East Providence, Paula DePetro of Cranston, Kathy Kowalewski and Linda Santillo of North Providence, Nancy Carvalho of Pawtucket, Joanne Cimini of Providence, Ginny McCann of Newport, Claire Trainor of Warwick and Annette Catalfano of Warren. 

Contests, often announced through a magazine for home economic teachers, are popular in schools, although a contest specifically for a class is unusual. Most are intended for individual students, said Sister Kateri, in which case the teacher is limited in what she can honestly help the student to do prepare an entry. Some prizes are really worth working for, like the $2,000 scholarship offered by one company.