Thursday, September 17, 2009

My Fall Favorites!!!

Mama Kat over at Mama's Losin' It has some great prompts this week plus she is giving away a wonderful fall basket so head on over by clicking her button above here and check her site out!!! 
3.) My Fall favorites.
      Fall is my favorite time of year!!! I love the crisp mornings, the warm afternoons and the cool evenings. I love walking through crackly fallen leaves. 
      The house feels cozy and warm when it's chilly outside and there's nothing better than reading a book with a glass of wine by the fireplace knowing that when you step away from the fire, you won't freeze, I hate being cold. 
      I love fall decorations, the pumpkins on the front porch, the warm fall colors of oranges, rusts and golds, the trays of apples and leaves on the table. 
      I love the idea of the harvest and how it's the visual expression of God's provisions for us.
I love Thanksgiving, the gathering of family and friends praising God for what he has given us and the meal of roasted turkey, pumpkin cheesecake, apple pies, sweet potato pecan pie with a fabulous bourbon sauce, Yum. 
      I love that I can bake everyday without the house feeling as hot as the oven. I love the smells of fall, cinnamon and nutmeg, cloves and pumpkin. I love canning chili sauce, jellies, jams and apple sauce using the same recipes as my mom and grandma. Sometimes without planning we'll be canning the same item on the same day!
      There is one thing though that makes it feel like fall to me and that's making baked apples with cinnamon. It is a dish that my mom always made  when the first crop of apples came in all crisp, juicy and ready to be filled with brown sugar, cinnamon and spices. The smell and taste of them makes it officially fall no matter what the calendar says. Here's my recipe.
Autumn Baked Apples 
  • 6 apples - I like using a crisp sturdy apple that is sweet. Like Macintosh,  Braeburn, Fuji or Pink Lady Apples. Golden or red delicious are not good choices for baking or pie they get too mealy.
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 cup chopped walnuts or pecans (optional)
  • 2 TBS of dried cranberries or cherries (optional)
  • 1 to 2 TBS butter
  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and grease a baking dish bit enough for all the apples to sit into. 
  2. With a paring knife or a potato peeler, remove the peel off of the top third of the apple about and inch and a half down                                                                                            
  3. Take a small spoon or an apple corer and scoop out the center of the apple
    making sure that you  don't scoop all the way through the bottom. You're creating a hole to fill with the sugar and spices.

      4. In a small bowl mix together the brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves. Add in the nuts and dried fruit if you wish. This batch was just plain old sugar and spices.

     4. Pack the brown sugar mixture into the cavity of the apple.  
         (Pack as tightly as you can without breaking the apple.)

     5. Top the sugar with a 1/2 tsp of butter, cold or room temp. doesn't matter which. Everything is better with some butter and this is no exception.

     6. Place the apples into the pan leaving some room around each one. Pour 1/2 to 3/4 cup of water into the bottom of the pan around the apples and dump any left over brown suger mixture into the water and stir.  This will form a thick syrup as it bakes.

      7. Place in the oven to bake until tender when pierced with a fork. About 45 minutes.  I baste my apples with the sugar water ever 15 to 20 minutes so that the top of the apples get all caramelized, but you don't have to do this.

Serve plain or with vanilla ice cream, whipped cream or a splash of half and half or milk over it. It's now officially fall!!!


kyslp said...

Those apples look yummy! Fall is my favorite, too. Thanks for stopping by my blog!

Kimberly said...

My mom made these for my sisters and me when we were growing up. Your post made me so homesick for her tonight :) I love these apples and your post reminded me how special they are to make in the fall, so I'm going to back them for my two-year-old this weekend!! It will be fun to share such a delicious, treasured fall treat with her.

Bloggin Betty said...

I'm following you back now! And now I'm really hungry. And I think I'm going to go home and make these right now, even if it is like 9 p.m. Wait, I don't have apples. And it would take a lot of work to go to the store. Can you send me some?

Emmy said...

Oh my goodness those look so good! I am so going to have to try that. Though my kids probably won't eat them, but my husband and I will love them!
Your post made me miss having a real fall. Beautifully written.
Thanks for coming by my blog today. I saw you recipe blog, I will definitely have to go back to it and try some new dishes.

Anonymous said...

Ha ha, Mom!!! Literally one hour ago I told Mike that I was going to make baked apples tomorrow because it doesn't feel like fall until I make them. I wonder where I got that from?

ashley said...

oh goodness, those look delicious and make me a little homesick as aus is coming into spring and i always crave pumpkin, apple, nutmeg, cinnamon anything! must be a cold climate thing:)
hope they were as tasty as they look,

Michelle said...

Mmmm yum -- never thought to make the syrup. I love that idea. And now I know what to do with the 21 apples Mister Man picked on his field trip today :)

Jenners said...

I love fall for all the same reasons ... and those apples look fantastic and I bet they smell amazing! To fall!

Los said...

You brought up so many more reasons why fall is excellent! Thank you!

yonca said...

Hi Margaret!
Youre must be the season.Those apples look delicious!Serving with ice-cream is a great idea! I will try it:)