Thursday, September 22, 2011

My Favorite Apple Desserts

Next to the beautiful colors of the autumn leaves, the best thing about fall in Dutchess County is the huge variety of delicious apples available. While we tend to eat them raw everyday, we also enjoy apple desserts. Here are some of my favorite recipes:

Apple Soufflé
(for 6 people)
5 eggs (separated)
2/3 cup of sugar
1 cup of milk
2 pounds of apples (each peeled and sliced into 12 half moon shaped sections)
3 tablespoons of flour
2 Tablespoons of Butter
Preheat oven to 350F. Melt butter in a skillet. Sauté the apple segments in the butter on a low flame until they are soft inside and a bit golden on the outside. Beat the egg yolks, sugar and flour together. Add the milk and mix. Beat the egg whites until they are stiff and gently fold into the egg yolk mixture. Pour into the skillet over the apples and cook as you would an omelet, gently picking up the sides and allowing the egg mixture to fill in the spaces. Bake in the oven for about 20 minutes. Serve warm!

No Sugar-No Spice Apple Sauce
6 apples (preferably two each of three different varieties)
1 pear
Peel and cut up fruit and place in a saucepan with 1 cup of water. Cook on medium flame, making sure that there is always a bit of liquid in the pot. (add more if necessary). When the fruit is cooked, mash with a masher. Serve warm or cold, as a snack, side dish or dessert. (The pear adds extra sweetness to the apples m
aking sugar unnecessary).

French Apple Tart
1 refrigerated pie dough (I use Pillsbury)
2 pounds apples, peeled, cored, and thinly sliced with a paring knife
2 pats of butter, sliced very thinly.
¼ cup sugar
½ cup apricot jam
2 tablespoon of cognac (or brandy or bourbon)
Preheat oven to 425°.
Place dough on a lightly floured surface; roll into a 12-inch circle. Fit into a fluted tart pan with a removable bottom. Place butter on the dough and sprinkle sugar over it. Arrange apple slices spoke like on top of dough, working from outside edge of dough to the center. Sprinkle apple slices with remaining sugar mixture. Bake at 425° for 30 minutes. While in the oven, combine the jam and cognac in a saucepan and cook over medium heat for a few minutes. Strain. Five minute before the tart is ready, brush the apricot jam over the apples and crust to give it a golden glaze.,

Apple Bundt Cake
3 cups sifted unbleached flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
21/3 cups sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
½ teaspoon nutmeg
½ teaspoon ground ginger
2 pounds apples (peeled, cored and diced)
4 large eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/3 cup apple juice
½ chopped walnuts
½ cup raisins
2 tablespoons Confectioners sugar
½ cup fine bread crumbs
Preheat oven to 350F. Butter the bundt pan and dust with fine bread crumbs. Sift together flour, baking powder, and salt. Ina small bowl mix ½ cup of sugar with the three spices. Beat the eggs and add oil, vanilla, juice, and the 2 remaining cups of sugar. On low speed add the sifted dry ingredients and mix only until smooth. Pour half of the batter into the buttered bundt pan. Sprinkle over it half of the walnuts, half of the raisins, half of the apples and half of the spiced sugar. Repeat with the remaining batter, nuts, fruits and spices. Cover the top of the pan with aluminum foil and fold down the sides to make it airtight. Bake 30 minutes. Remove the foil. Bake an hour uncovered and cover loosely with aluminum foil to bake for another 15-20 minutes. (Total bake time is one hour and 45-50 minutes). Let cool for 20 minutes. Cover with a wide flat plate and turn upside down. Tap with a spoon on the top and sides and remove the pan. Let cool completely and then sprinkle the confectioner’s sugar over it.

Gerard’s Suggestions
Instead of wine Gerard recommends serving a Calvados – an apple brandy from Normandy!

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