Apple Family Values

I happen to be quite fond of Apples, the fruit and computer kinds. In fact I’m blogging from one right now. Fun fact…as I’m blogging, Feasting on Asphalt is on TV and I’ve got my Good Eats The Early Years book next to me, I’m having an Alton overload, and that’s never, ever, ever a bad thing! Anyway…on to business. Fall is in the air and there could not be a more perfect time to do this episode. Your home is guaranteed to be filled with the most delicious and comforting aromas. I just love baking this time of year, plus the heat from the oven doesn’t hurt when you’re trying to stay warm 🙂

So let’s break it down. There are hundreds of varieties of apples. I’m going to try to keep it as simple as possible and just break them down into three categories Raw, Cooked and Baked.

Starting with Raw, The Waldorf Salad. Now, a Waldorf salad is usually compromised of apples, mayo and lettuce and that’s it. Alton changes it up a bit here. The ingredients to me sound like a disaster, but the outcome is outstanding! I rebelled from the recipe a tad and used 2 Granny Smith apples and 1 Red Delicious. In all honesty, use whatever apples you like best.

The ingredients
First thing I do since I didn’t buy toasted walnuts is to throw them on a sheet pan and bake at 350 for 5-7 minutes, just until you start to smell them in the kitchen.
Let them cool slightly, throw them on a cutting board…
And chop them to death. The recipe calls for crushed, I find this method works just fine.
For the apples, first slice them in half
Then, using a melon baller, scoop out the center seeds and stem area.
Chop into bite size squares
Throw them in a bowl
And the cider vinegar
And toss
Now get your AB Gear plunger and put in your mayo
Wait…you don’t have an AB Gear plunger??? Well, good luck getting a cup of mayo in this bowl.
AB, you make my culinary heart swoon
Mix thoroughly
Add a pinch of Kosher salt and a grind of black pepper
Remember those walnuts we toasted and chopped to death? Add those now
Some Golden Raisins
Curry Powder
Grab the 2 stalks of celery
Chop off the top and bottom and cut on the bias
Now you’ve got what I like to call “pretty cut” celery
Throw those into the bowl
Take the mint leaves
Roll them up
Pretend you’re a fancy french chef and chiffonade away
Add the mint to the bowl
Take half the red onion
Slice it as thin as possible, also know as Julienning. If you’re not so confident in your culinary knifing skills you could also use a mandolin, but practice makes perfect so give it a try.
Add the onion
Grab a leaf of Romaine and spoon on the mixture. Give yourself a pat on the back because you just made a fancy schmancy salad.
Now that’s a Wonderful Waldorf



It’s a Wonderful Waldorf
(Printable Recipe)

Ingredients

* 2 Ginger Gold apples (Fuji will substitute)
* 1 Red Delicious apple
* 3 tablespoons cider vinegar
* 1 cup prepared mayonnaise
* 1 pinch kosher salt
* Cracked black pepper
* 3/4 cup toasted walnuts, crushed
* 1 cup golden raisins
* 2 teaspoons curry powder
* 2 stalks celery, thin bias cut
* 1/3 cup fresh mint, chiffonade
* 1/2 red onion, julienned
* 1 head romaine lettuce, heart only

Directions

Cut apples in half and remove the core with a melon baller. Chop apples into medium-sized pieces, leaving skin on.

In a bowl, toss apples with the cider vinegar. Fold in mayonnaise thoroughly. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Fold in walnuts, raisins, curry powder, celery, mint and red onion. Adjust seasoning. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour to allow flavors to incorporate. To serve, arrange 2 leaves of romaine lettuce per plate and spoon salad on top.
Recipe Courtesy of FoodNetwork.com

Now on to the cooked apples. This recipe is for a 10 minute applesauce. It’s super easy. Serve it warm or cold on it’s own, on top pork chops or potato pancakes, as a crepe filling, the possibilities really are endless. Again I deviated from the recipe and used 4 Granny Smith’s and 2 Honey Crisp apples. If you have not tried Honey Crisp, leave your computer now, run to the store and get some. They are the best in my opinion!

First Peel the apples. Alton makes a comment about ladies making pie in Minnesota using this method…
So apparently I was born with the ability to peel the skin from an apple in one continuous stroke. This make take a little practice to get it down, but you’ll get the hang of it in no time
Once the apples are peeled, core and quarter them and get the rest of the ingredients together
Put the apples in a microwave safe bowl and add the apple cider
Then the Brandy or Congnac
Butter
Honey, If you coat the measuring device you’re using for the honey with oil first, it will come out very easy
And finally cinnamon
Pull open a corner to vent while in microwave and throw on high for 10 minutes
Now, if you’re lucky like me and bought a Vitamix when they were on sale a Costco, throw your hot apple mixture in there and mix to desired consistency. You could also us a masher or emulsion blender.
Pour in a bowl and devour

10 Minute Apple Sauce
(Printable Recipe)

Ingredients

* 3 Golden Delicious apples, peeled, cored, and quartered
* 3 Fuji apples, peeled, cored, and quartered
* 1 cup unfiltered apple juice
* 2 tablespoons cognac or brandy
* 2 tablespoons butter
* 3 tablespoons honey
* 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Directions

In a sealable microwave-safe container, combine apples with all other ingredients. Close lid, leaving one corner of lid open to allow steam to escape. Microwave on high for 10 minutes.

Using a hand blender or potato masher, blend to desired consistency. Serve hot immediately or chill for later use.
Recipe Courtesy of FoodNetwork.com

Sick of apples yet?? One more recipe, now these would be the baked kind. This recipe is so unique and I loved using the apples as the serving vessel. I won’t mention any names, but the chocoholic in my life who refuses all desserts non-chocolate, ate two of these in one sitting.

The ingredients
Cut off the bottom of the apple slightly to get a flat surface. Then, cut off the top of the apples like a jack-o-lantern and use a melon baller to scoop out the core. Be careful not to scoop all the way through the apple. You want to bottom to be intact to hold ingredients.
Pour some honey in each apple
Combine all dry ingredients, add butter and with your fingers work in the diced butter until the mixture is nice and crumbly. Add a heaping amount of the streusel mixture to each apple.
Throw in the oven and bake for 40 minutes. Enjoy the aroma in your home and these delicious little treats from the gods, otherwise known as Alton Brown.

Baker, Baker
(Printable Recipe)

Ingredients

* 3/4 cup oats
* 3/4 cup flour
* 2/3 cup light brown sugar, packed
* 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
* 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
* Pinch kosher salt
* 1 stick cold unsalted butter, diced
* 4 Braeburn apples (Fuji will substitute)
* 4 teaspoons honey

Directions

In a bowl combine all the dry ingredients and diced butter. Rub mixture briskly between finger tips until it forms small moist clumps in a loose sandy mixture. Refrigerate while preparing the apples.

Cut a small layer off the bottom of each apple to create a flat, stable bottom surface. With a small paring knife, cut a cylindrical cone out of the top of the apple, moving about 1-inch outside of the core, similar to removing the top of a pumpkin when carving a Jack O’Lantern. Remove the top and discard. With a melon baller or a teaspoon, remove the remaining core and seeds taking care not to puncture the base of the apple.

Place apples on a baking sheet or pie dish and fill each center with a teaspoon of honey. Spoon in mixture, packing lightly until heaped and overflowing over sides of the apples.

Bake in oven at 350 degrees on the top or middle rack for 40 minutes or until filling is golden brown and the tip of a paring knife can be inserted into the side of the apple with little or no resistance. Let apples stand for 10 minutes before serving.
Recipe Courtesy of FoodNetwork.com

How do you like those apples? 😉

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6 thoughts on “Apple Family Values

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