Nothing welcomes Autumn like the fresh apple harvest, the harbinger of leaves putting on their party dresses of red, gold, orange and yellows. Nothing perks up your spirits like the smell of baking apples with lots of cinnamon, fresh grated nutmeg, cardamom, lemon zest. Whatever you add to the apples becomes aromatherapy as you walk into your home on a cold and rainy day to deeply inhale those wonderful smells emanating from the oven.
In our home, we choose to use Honey Crisp apples, which hold their shape during baking and look like the inside of an apple pie (I love a good crust on my pie, but these apples give all the best of the pie without the guilt!) There really is no recipe to do this—it is just your whimsy and what spices seem to fit the occasion. Remember that the apples will shrink down as they bake so we always have 8 to 10 pounds of apples. You may choose to peel them or leave the skin on during baking. We peel them.
Apples should be sliced to roughly the same thickness so they cook to the same level of done. You may like them completely soft or some people like them “al dente” – it’s totally a personal preference.
Rose’s Baked Apples
8 to 10 pounds of apples peeled and sliced
½ cup flour
Fresh grated nutmeg
Dash and a pinch salt
Butter (we prefer ghee)
Mix dry ingredients together, butter the baking dish, layer apples with spices and butter, bake for 30 to 45 minutes at 350.
Mix coconut sugar with about a ½ cup of flour (again the amount of sugar depends on the sweetness of the apples so less is better) and mix in the spices and a bit of salt. Stir well and begin to layer the apples in a glass baking dish (for 10 pounds, we use 11 x 17 size). Sprinkle the sugar and spice mix over the layer, add a few dots of butter, and then continue layering until the pan is full. The flour will help thicken the juices as the apples bake and gives a little more body. Your pan may be heaped in the middle and that’s okay, they will settle down.
Bake for 30 minutes at 350 and then check to see if they are done to your taste. If you want them softer, leave in for another 10 or 15 minutes. Then ENJOY this with a scoop of ice cream and let the apples melt the ice cream; just close your eyes and savor the flavor.
Thank you glorious Autumn for this gift of goodness.
- recipe shared by Rose Coleman