I'm late with everything this year. But since I'm a deadline-oriented person, I'm kicking in the afterburners to get my holiday baking done. (My UPS man would be unhappy if I didn't give him a goodie box--and, considering nearly all my work passes through his hands, he's one fella I don't want to anger!) So I've been baking kiffles, mini black bottom cupcakes, and other cookies.
For my neighbors I made Ina Garten's Apple Cake Tatin, which was featured on one of her Barefoot Contessa shows. (Check it out--the episode is called "Housewarming Party" and is airing again on January 7 at 1:30 pm.) I coerced my husband and our neighbor Dan into trying it out--y'know, to make sure it was "good." There's a candied-sugar glaze on it that can make the cake a little crunchy after a day or two. If that happens, all you need to do is warm the cake (preferably not in a microwave) and you're good to go.
The recipe is easy to double, and the only special equipment you need is a candy thermometer, unless you're comfortable with sugar work and knowing exactly how amber to make the glaze.