Too Many Apples

A few weeks ago, my son who is living in San Francisco with three roommates while attending university called. “No one seemed to realize that we had apples already so everyone bought some. We have six bags of apples. I was thinking, you’re someone who knows what to do with things…”

Suppressing my desire to bask in the joy of knowing my 19-yr-old child recognizes my talent, I listened with a proud heart as he mentioned he’d already made a pie crust that was chilling in the fridge but hoped I could provide options for ‘what besides apple pie’ might he do with all these apples.

Harkening back to the days when I lived in retreat houses with apple orchards (1982-1986) – and the carpal tunnel that resulted from my hours of hand peeling apples to make gallons of applesauce (3-5 gals per week), hundreds of apple pies (15-20 per week), and creatively using any apples that remained – I conjured the many variations of apple dishes I served. Then I added the treats I’ve enjoyed since living in through the chilly autumn months of the Midwest.

I thought I’d follow up on the guest post I wrote for Leanne at Cresting the Hill’s Social Saturday: The Art and Science of Creative Cooking by sharing a few things to do with all these apples:

  • Apple pie (a recipe of your choosing)
  • Apple sauce (peel – or not, core and cut, add a little water and dump in a crockpot/slow cooker; add sugar and cinnamon if desired)
  • Baked apples (core but leave the bottom intact, fill with mix of brown sugar, cinnamon, and raisins – and bake)
  • Apple turnovers (buy remade crescent roll dough, cut apples in tiny chunks, mix with cinnamon, sugar, cornstarch; place mixture in flat uncooked dough, dab with butter, roll up and bake)
  • Hot Apple cider (juice the apples, pour juice into crockpot, add a bag of mulling spices)
  • Apples & caramel sauce (a favorite fall pleasure)
  • Apples sliced into sauté starter – with celery, onions, mushrooms, garlic, ginger to flavor the oil when cooking veggies, pastas, or grains.
  • Apples in a smoothie – tossing slices or chunks to a smoothie adds fiber and vitamins without changing the flavor much

Do you have any creative, delicious ideas for enjoying an apple-a-day?

38 comments

  1. No creative ideas on this end, but I certainly appreciate you sharing yours! I live in apple orchard territory so will be working my way through your list over the next several months. 🙂

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  2. There’s a church downtown Cambridge (Galt section) that makes the most fabulous apple dumplings every market day. Served with coffee or tea and a delicious (albeit terribly sweet) caramel sauce. They also make dumplings to take home, which I have done for a special dessert. I don’t have a recipe but each takes a whole apple so would use them up quickly.

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  3. Love the idea of adding apples to a sauté! I’ve not cooked with fruit before… had a recipe this summer for grilled peaches and they were lovely. Need to think about using fruit more in cooking main dishes and not just dessert.

    My mom had an apple “pudding” I adored as a child. I need to find that recipe now!

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  4. I love apples in desserts so this is an easy one for me. I’m glad you mention baked apples. They are so easy and always a favorite of mine but nobody seems to make them anymore. Apple crisp is another easy favorite. I also like apples in dessert salad, cut them up, add whipped cream and chocolate chunks!

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  5. A delicious collection Janet and aren’t you proud of your son having the pie crust made! I like the idea of Apples and caramel sauce but hadn’t thought of using apples in a starter. Your suggestion sounds delish! Thanks for sharing with us at #MLSTL. P.S. my grandson Ethan starts each day with an apple. We aren’t sure why but he wakes each morning and asks for one. Better than candy!

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  6. That was a huge amount of apple cooking you did back in the day Janet – I’m surprised you can still look at an apple and not run from the room screaming! My favourite apple dessert is apple crumble – so easy to make and delicious – and everyone loves it when you bring it as your contribution to a bring and share meal.
    #MLSTL 🙂

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    • Leanne, I certainly had my share of apple cooking. Funny that you mention running from apples – I’d never thought of that. But I imagine, my life would be limited if I ran from things I was inundated with in my convent days — far too many to count! Will you share the apple crumble recipe?

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    • My easy apple crumble recipe is – tin of cooked apples for the base + crumble made of flour, rolled oats, raw sugar and dash of cinnamon rubbed into a crumble with butter and then cooked in oven long enough to brown the top – no exact measurements – I tend to throw things together and they turn out fine x

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  7. I don’t have any apple suggestions, but I just had to comment. I love this post! First of all, I’m impressed that four young roommates didn’t let the apples go to waste; that your son already had a pie crust chilling, and that he called the expert, Mom, for more creative ideas. Nice work all the way around.

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    • Thanks Christie! That’s kind of what I was thinking when he called me! But I thought it also a good follow up to the cooking post I’d shared on Cresting the Hill — and it has become the impetus to post more “In the Kitchen” blogs. We’ll see how that turns out…Thanks for joining the conversation.

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  8. We often find ourselves with a lot of apples, and fruit leather is one of my favorites! You make applesauce, then spread it thin on a cookie sheet (I spray the cookie sheet with oil first) and put it in the oven on the lowest setting fo a few hours. When it is hot out, I put the cookie sheet on the grill with the top closed (I do not light the grill!). It’s a lot like fruit roll-ups, and my 11 year old loves it!

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  9. Ooohhh… I am going to PIn this for future reference. We have another month before apples will be plentiful here in the midwest. I’m excited to try some of your suggestions. Do you happen to have a good pie crust recipe(?) My mom bought frozen…. but I’d love to learn make one from scratch.

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    • Funny you should ask about the crust Molly — I haven’t made one in years – which is why I’m so proud of my son! And the Quiche dough recipe I have begins with 24 cups of flour! Remember I cooked for the masses…the key to a good pie crust for me is real butter and making sure you really cut the butter in. I always used the old fashion pastry blender. Sorry I can’t be of more help — but practice is what makes the best dough!

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  10. I happen to love Apple and zucchini bread. The apples are just about ready for picking and the zucchini are more than plentiful at about the same time here in New England. Apple muffins are always good too…not to mention eating a nice crispy apple as you take a walk.

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    • Do you mix apple and zucchini in one bread? I have a favorite zucchini bread but I’ve never added apples. Yes – and apple muffins…the list continues to grow. Thanks for joining the conversation!

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