This week’s column is dedicated to all those people such as plowmen, paper deliverers and letter carriers who keep taking care of us, regardless of the weather.

Pecan Upside Down Cake

1/2 cup reduced fat butter, melted

1/2 cup packed brown sugar

1/4 cup dark corn syrup

1 1/2 cups pecan halves

1 package (18 1/4 ounces) butter pecan cake mix

1 cup reduced fat sour cream

1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce

2 eggs

2 egg whites

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

In a small bowl, combine the butter, brown sugar, corn syrup and pecans. Spread evenly into a 13-by-9-inch baking pan coated with cooking spray. Set aside. In a large bowl, combine remaining ingredients; beat with a mixer on low speed for 30 seconds. Beat on medium for two minutes. Transfer to prepared pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 to 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for five minutes before inverting onto a serving platter. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Spinach Casserole

2 or 3 packages frozen chopped spinach

1 pint dairy sour cream

1 package dried onion soup mix

grated Parmesan cheese

Combine dairy sour cream with as much dry onion soup mix as you would like to use. In the meantime, cook frozen spinach according to directions on package, drain and mix with cream mixture. Turn into buttered 7-by-11-inch casserole. Sprinkle grated cheese on top. Heat in moderate oven at 325 to 350 degrees until it is bubbly. Made with two packages of spinach this serves four to six people. Made with three packages it serves six to eight people. Use the same amount of cream and onion soup mix with either amount of frozen spinach.

Our thought for the week: Failure follows the man whose wishbone is where his backbone should be.