September 17, 2015 | Home & Happiness Team | Comments Off on Four Simple Apple Recipes for Sophisticated Fall Flavor
Right now in New England, we can practically smell Autumn approaching.
Evenings are officially sweater-worthy. Folks are harvesting and canning. Children are back in school. All in all, it’s time to embrace the approaching bounty of a New England Autumn, kicked off officially in our neighborhood with the Annual Lenox Apple Squeeze Festival.
This season is already marked with a banner crop…maybe it was the weather, the extra rain, or just luck, but it’s a superior year for apples in particular! People who didn’t even realize they had trees are gathering fruit by the bushel and making everything “apple” under the sun.
Whether you’re a novice in the kitchen, just want a no-fuss idea, or want the grand-kids try their hand at something fresh and wondrous that they can do all by themselves (with supervision, of course) – these are the simplest apple recipes we had on hand. Easy as pie, in fact! Do let us know if you try any of them.
Apple Pie Cookies
2-3 Apples Peeled, Cored & Sliced (Tart varieties work well!)
“Pie” Dough (Homemade, Pre-made, even crescent roll dough will work.)
Brown Sugar & Cinnamon (The more the merrier!)
Wrap the apple slices in pie dough coated with cinnamon and brown sugar. Bake on a lined pan at 425- 450 degrees for about 10 minutes, (or until a beautiful brown). You can fancy this up or down in many ways, but those are the basics. The apples can be peeled or not, and wrapped with homemade or prepared dough. Add a butter glaze or an egg wash to the top for some added drama…it will still smell and taste marvelous. Is it a cookie? Or is it a tiny pie? Either way, it’s a finger-food favorite around here.
Easy-Baked Apple Sophistication
2-3 Apples – Core removed but bottom intact
(Any variety, but core carefully – the shell needs to hold liquid.)
Brown Sugar & Cinnamon Blend
1 Pat of Butter (Tsp) per Apple
Optional: Caramels, Nuts, Raisins
Core the top (leave enough bottom to hold in the liquid love) fill with brown sugar, cinnamon and a pat of butter. Bake at 350 until tender (about 20 min). So simple, it’s unfair how amazing it turns out. Wrap it in foil or set it in a dish, and create a lid from the top piece – or not. Baked apples can be cooked in individual ramekins, muffin tins, or as a batch in a shallow baking dish. Tuck in a stick of cinnamon, a handful of pecans and raisins, or a caramel for flair. You can create a pie crust lattice over the top for some panache. Few apple recipes are this simple and this good!
Apple Ring Crisps or Pancakes
2-3 Apples Sliced Horizontally and Cored into Rings
(If you cut slices first, a biscuit or cookie cutter cores them easily.)
Cinnamon and Brown Sugar
2-3 Pats of Butter
Variation: Dip in Pancake Batter (Mix, Pre-made… any kind will work!)
Dip or Shake apple rings (with or without peel) in sugar mixture to coat both sides. Preheat a saucepan on medium and melt a pat of butter. Brown the apple rings on each side (watch for burning or sticking) – the trick is keeping attentive and your heat on the lower side of medium. That’s it. When they turn a golden brown and smell like the most wonderful thing you’ve ever dreamed – they’re done. And you can serve them with ice cream as dessert, on a waffle, between pancakes, with caramel sauce… or just fresh and hot on a plate with another pat of butter! See the recipe below for directions on dipping in batter for a fitter-minded pancake. There’s practically no need for a recipe, but here is one we like.
The “I’m a Chef” Apple Pork Roast
Pork Loin or Small Roast (room temperature, patted dry)
2-3 Apples (your choice of variety – peeled, cored, sliced)
2-3 Sweet Onions (peeled, cut into wedges apple-slice size)
Salt, Pepper & Rosemary Leaves (fresh or dried)
2 Cups Apple Cider (Any kind – sweet, hard or even juice)
Optional Garlic Clove
Brown your loin or small roast first in a saucepan if desired (not required) and set on a shallow pan – arrange apples and onions around then season all with salt, pepper and rosemary. Add a clove of garlic or two if desired. Bake at 350 for 45 -50 min (safe done temp. is 145 degrees). The browning is for looks mostly, if you’re in hurry you can skip it. As always, the goal is lovely caramelization of the apples and onions blending with the juices from the roast. Check at 20 minutes and flip over your apples/onions if they’re browning too much. When your roast reaches 145 degrees – remove it to rest before carving and rearrange your apples and onions on a platter. Then deglaze the pan by pouring the apple cider over the dark, lovely flavorful bits remaining and scraping it up with a spatula. Strain this pour over the arranged dish for a sauce that really pulls together all your flavors. Lovely!