Sunday, August 30, 2015

It's That Time Of Year Again

Apple Season is now upon us here in New England and what better way to get the apple rolling than some original, Yankee recipes using our favorite orchard fruit? Having spent a few hours at Treworgy's Orchard here in Levant, Maine, I came away with some fantastic apples and I highly urge all to take a trip, even if you have to drive a little ways. This place is perfect if you have little ones. Check them out at Check out their corn maze this year, such fun.

Without going on and on(much like I did in my previous post), let's start peeling. And if you have any questions about certain apples for any recipe you are preparing, simply ask them. They are the single friendliest people as well as 100% child friendly, which is the mitigating factor for me visiting year after year.

Crunchy Apple Crisp Bites

These little treats are perfect for that after school snack, sitting on the deck at twilight or curled up watching your favorite movie. The coating is a little tricky but by placing some of the oat mixture in the palm of your hand, then an apple piece, topped with more oats, simply squash together with both hands while rotating the apple a couple of times.

1/4 cup brown sugar
3 tablespoons flour
1/2 cup rolled oats
1/2 teaspoon each cinnamon and nutmeg
1 tablespoon butter or margarine, melted
2 egg whites
1 firm apple, peeled, cored and quartered
Whipped topping

Preheat oven to 350-degrees F. In a shallow bowl, combine sugar, flour, oats, cinnamon and nutmeg. Add the butter and mix until all dry ingredients are moistened. Add egg whites to a shallow bowl and whisk well. Cut apple quarters into 4 evenly sized pieces, about an inch on all sides. Add a quarter of the apple slices into egg whites, stir to coat. Lifting out one apple piece at a time, shake excess egg white off and dip in oat mixture. Press dry coating into all sides of apple firmly and place on a dry baking sheet. Continue until all apples are coated. Bake 13-15 minutes, or until apple is softened when pressed and the coating has become crispy, turning over halfway through baking to brown on all sides. Remove from oven and serve warm with whipped topping for dipping.

Enough for 2

Spiced Wine-Poached Apples

My favorite vehicle for these poached apples is a simply grilled pork chops and unpretentious, freshly cooked green beans. But if I were to enjoy these wine-infused apples as a dessert, the answer is yet another simple presentation.....ladled hot over real vanilla bean ice cream.

2 firm, tart apples, such as Granny Smith
1 cup red wine *
2 tablespoons chopped, candied or crystallized ginger
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

Peel, core and cut apples in 8 wedges each. Place apples in a large bowl, add remainder of ingredients and toss to combine well. Cover and refrigerate for one hour, stirring frequently. Transfer apple mixture to a large skillet over low heat. Once the wine is hot and slightly simmering, let apples cook until they are crisp tender, about 15-17 minutes. Remove apples with a slotted spoon to enjoy over your protein or ice cream.

*Red Bordeaux, red Beaujolais or Pinot Noir are highly recommended for this recipe.

Grilled Pork with Golden Cider Gravy

Although hard apple cider is less sweet(ordinarily)than non-alcoholic apple cider, you can substitute one for the other in this recipe. Simply add a pinch or two of salt over pork before cooking if desired. The hard apple cider, I might add, will tenderize the pork much more efficiently than ordinary cider.

1(12-ounce)bottle hard apple cider
2 tablespoons lemon juice
4(6-ounce)boneless pork chops
3 tablespoons butter or margarine, divided
2 tart apples, peeled, cored and cut into 10-12 wedges
1 cup cooked carrot slices
1/2 cup vegetable broth
2 tablespoons maple syrup
2 teaspoons cornstarch
4 cups California style vegetables

In a large, shallow bowl, blend cider and lemon juice. Add pork chops, cover with film wrap and refrigerate at least 4 hours. Turn chops a couple times while marinating. Melt half the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add apple wedges and cook about 6-7 minutes, or until browned and almost completely tender. Remove pan from heat and set aside.

Meanwhile, remove pork from marinade onto a plate; set pork aside. Transfer marinade to a blender or food processor with the cooked carrots, vegetable broth, maple syrup and cornstarch. Pulse on high until as smooth as possible. Transfer to a saucepan and boil over medium-high heat until reduced by half. Add reduced marinade to skillet with cooked apples and bring to a simmer while cooking pork.

Add remainder of butter to a large skillet over medium heat and cook pork until no longer pink in the middle. Heat California-style vegetables until hot according to package directions. Serve 1 pork chop per person, topped with a quarter of the cooked apples in Golden Cider Gravy and equal amounts of vegetables.


Baked Sour Apple Piroshki

Okay, okay! I know I have repeatedly 'repeated' that I would not use alcohol in recipes because of my love of everyone(especially children)enjoying my recipes. But I had a weak moment and being a Yankee, I adore anything apple. So, because I thought our beloved Apple Jack liquor would be far too potent for this Russian street food, I chose the deliciously different apple liqueur. For those of you who do not want any alcohol, simply replace with melted, whisked apple jelly or even mint jelly.

1 cup warm apple juice
1/4 cup brown sugar, divided
1(.25-ounce)envelope dry yeast
2 cups diced, sweet apples
1/4 cup apple liqueur*
2 1/4 cups flour, divided
1 tablespoon oil
1 teaspoon salt
Nonstick cooking spray
1 egg, beaten

 In a large bowl, add apple juice, 2 tablespoons brown sugar and yeast. Stir well and let sit 10 minutes. Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan, add diced apples and enough water to cover. Over medium heat, cook until apples are crisp tender, about 5 minutes. Remove, strain, transfer to a bowl. Stir in apple liqueur and refrigerate until needed.

After 10 minutes, stir 2 cups flour, oil and salt in the yeast mixture. Using a wooden spoon, continue stirring until it begins leaving the side of the bowl. Loosely cover with a cloth and place in a warm spot to rise for about an hour, or until almost double in bulk. On a well floured work surface, empty dough and knead for 2-3 minutes, or until elastic feeling and it is no longer sticky. Divide into 12 equal pieces. Grease a baking pan with nonstick cooking spray; set aside. Remove cooked apples from refrigerator and stir in apple liqueur; set aside.

Flatten out a dough ball until it is about 3 inches in diameter. Place a tablespoon of apple mixture in the center and pinch until it is sealed. Place, sealed side down, on prepared baking pan. Repeat with remainder of dough and apple mixture, leaving 3 inches between each filled dough ball. Brush the top of each with beaten egg and place in cold oven. Turn heat to 350-degrees F and bake 30-32 minutes, or until lightly browned on top. The filling may ooze out on top, but that is fine. Remove from oven to a plate or rack to cool slightly before serving or cool completely.
This is just the beginning. A couple more trips to Treworgy's over the next couple weeks will certainly result in more Yanked recipes.


1 comment:

momoftwo said...

Damn Yankee, great recipes. Taking kids to there tonight. TY