All About Apples & Great Recipe Picks
a special feature from Kay & Leslie, founders grandparentslink.com
It’s that time of year – the foliage is making a statement and so are all those delicious, nutritious apples of the season. There’s no better time than now, to give you a quick glossary of the different types of apples, and then of course, we have some delectable baked apple delights (recipes) that you won’t be able to resist.
Top Apple Picks*
With so many varieties to pick from, it can be hard to know which apple is right for you. Some are better for baking, while others are most enjoyable when eaten out of hand. Here are some popular apples and their best uses.
A cross between the Jonathan and Golden Delicious varieties, this crisp apple has a pleasing mild flavor with a hint of honey that is enjoyable eaten fresh or baked!
This is a wonderful apple for pies or apple crisp. It has a terrific tang that blends well with spices when baked.
This Japanese apple was formed by crossing red Delicious apples and Rall’s Janet apples. Fuji’s are crisp, firm, and sweet, and are best eaten fresh.
Rome apples are a favorite for baking because they retain their shape well and their flavor is enhanced, becoming sweeter as they bake.
Adaptable and mild, Golden Delicious apples are brilliant in any baked good and a beloved choice for apple cider.
No wonder the Gala apple is a popular variety- it’s crisp, sweet, and versatile. Eat it fresh, as well as in your baked goods.
The tart flesh of the Granny Smith is a natural for sugary baked goods — the perfect baking apple.
The Braeburn is available a little later in the season- usually October- but this spicy-sweet, multipurpose apple is worth the wait!
Harvest the scents of fall with the aroma of baked apples and cinnamon wafting from the oven. Here are some scrumptious recipes for going beyond apple pie!
Danish Pastry Apple Bars**
Prep: 30 minutes
Bake: 50 minutes
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup shortening
1 egg yolk
1 cup cornflakes
8 cups peeled and sliced tart cooking apples (8 medium)
1 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 egg white, lightly beaten
1 cup powdered sugar
3 to 4 teaspoons milk
• Preheat oven to 375. For pastry — in a large bowl stir together flour and salt. Using a pastry blender, cut in shortening until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. In a glass measuring cup, beat egg yolk lightly with a fork. Stir in enough milk to measure 2/3 cup total liquid. Add egg yolk mixture all at once to flour mixture. Stir lightly with fork until combined (pastry will be slightly sticky). Divide pastry in half.
• On a well-floured surface, roll half of the pastry into a 17×12-inch rectangle. Fold pastry crosswise into thirds. Transfer to a 15x10x1-inch baking pan and unfold pastry, pressing to fit into the bottom and sides of the pan. Sprinkle with cornflakes; top with apple slices. In a small bowl stir together granulated sugar and cinnamon; sprinkle most over apples. Roll the remaining pastry into a 15×10-inch rectangle. Fold pastry crosswise into thirds. Place on top of apples and unfold pastry. Crimp edges or seal with the lines of a fork. Cut slits in top of pastry; brush surface with beaten egg white. Sprinkle with remaining sugar mixture.
• Bake about 50 minutes or until apples are tender and pastry is light brown, covering loosely with foil for the last 25 minutes of baking.
• For icing, in a bowl combine powdered sugar and the 3 to 4 teaspoons milk to reach drizzling consistency. Drizzle warm uncut bars with icing. Cool completely in pan on a wire rack. Cut into bars. Makes 32 Bars.
prep: 25 minutes
bake: 18 minutes
1 15-ounce package (2 crust) rolled refrigerated unbaked pie crust
1 1/3 cups chopped baking apples (2 medium)
1/2 cup toffee pieces
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1/8 teaspoon salt
powdered sugar (optional)
• Let pie crusts stand according to package directions. Preheat oven to 375. In a medium bowl combine apples, toffee pieces, brown sugar, melted butter, and salt; set aside.
• On a lightly floured surface, unroll one pie crust at a time. Using a 3-inch round cookie cutter, cut pastry into 24 circles, re-rolling scraps as necessary. Press pastry circles onto the bottoms and up the sides of 24 UN-greased 1 3/4- inch muffin cups. Spoon about 1 tablespoon of the apple mixture into each cup.
• Bake about 18 minutes or until pastry is golden and filling is bubbly. Remove tartlets from muffin cups and cool on a wire rack. If desired, sprinkle with powdered sugar.
Makes 24 tartlets.
Apple Streusel Muffins****
Prep: 25 minutes
Bake: 18 minutes
Cool: 5 minutes
Nonstick cooking spray
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour or white whole wheat flour
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon apple pie spice
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup buttermilk
2 tablespoons canola oil
3/4 cup shredded peeled apple (1 medium)
2 tablespoons finely chopped pecans
1 tablespoon flax seed meal or toasted wheat germ
1 tablespoon packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon butter
• Preheat oven to 375. Lightly coat twelve 2 1/2-inch muffin cups with cooking spray or line with paper bake cups and coat bake cups with cooking spray; set aside. In a large bowl stir together all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, the 1/3 cup brown sugar, the baking powder, apple pie spice, and salt. Make a well in the center of flour mixture; set aside.
• In a medium bowl combine eggs, buttermilk, and oil. Add egg mixture all at once to flour mixture. Stir just until moistened (batter should be lumpy). Fold in shredded apple. Spoon batter into the prepared muffin cups, filling each about three-fourths full.
• In a small bowl combine pecans, flax seed meal, and the 1 tablespoon brown sugar. Using a pastry blender, cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Spoon pecan mixture onto batter in cups.
• Bake for 18 to 20 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the centers comes out clean. Cool in muffin cups on a wire rack for 5 minutes. Remove muffins from muffin cups. Serve warm.
Makes 12 muffins.
Apple Cinnamon Pull-Apart Bread*****
Prep: 25 minute
Cool: 5 minutes
nonstick cooking spray
1 7.5-ounce package (10) refrigerated reduced-fat home style biscuits
4 teaspoons ground flax seeds
2 teaspoon granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup thinly sliced apple
3 tablespoons coarsely chopped walnuts
2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons orange juice
1 tablespoon butter
2 tablespoons reduced-fat cream cheese, softened
2 teaspoons orange juice
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
• Preheat oven to 350. Coat an 8x4x2-inch loaf pan with cooking spray; set aside. Cut biscuits in half crosswise. In a small bowl stir together ground flax seeds, 1 teaspoon of the granulated sugar, and the cinnamon. Roll biscuit halves in flax seed mixture to coat. Alternately arrange biscuit halves and apple slices in the prepared loaf pan. Sprinkle with any remaining flax seed mixture and walnuts.
• In a saucepan combine brown sugar, the 2 tablespoons orange juice, and the butter. Cook and stir over medium-high heat until boiling. Pour mixture over biscuits. Bake about 25 minutes or until edges are golden and biscuits near center are done. Cool in pan on a wire rack for 5 minutes. Invert bread onto a small baking sheet; invert again onto a serving platter.
• For icing, in a small bowl whisk together cream cheese, the 2 tablespoons orange juice, the vanilla, and the remaining 1 teaspoon granulated sugar. Drizzle bread with icing. Serve warm.
Makes 6 servings.
Recipes Reprinted from:
*Better Homes and Gardens Special Interest Publications,Top Apple Picks, Fall 2013, p.93.
** Better Homes and Gardens Special Interest Publications, Danish Pastry Apple Bars, Fall 2013, p.95.
*** Better Homes and Gardens Special Interest Publications, Apple-Toffee Tartlets, Fall 2013, p.96.
**** Better Homes and Gardens Special Interest Publications, Apple Streusel Muffins, Fall 2013 p.98.
***** Better Homes and Gardens Special Interest Publications, Apple-Cinnamon Pull-Apart Bread, Fall 2013, p.98.