Of course you can find apples at the grocery store. But when I was at the Farmers Market this weekend, I was reminded that there are apples, and then there are apples! Glascock's at our Market has Staymen apples right now, and these are terrific for cooking. While I'm thinking of my mother's pies, I'm reminded that she always uses this snappy variety anytime she makes a pie, or oh my, her dumplings. I love the Ginger Golds for eating. So if you're one of those who thinks apples are rather pedestrian, try reaching for a variety you haven't tried next time.
So let's say you've bought a bushel or so of apples. Now what? Ok, they are great for packing in lunches because they don't take up much room and they're easy to eat. But let's move on. Apples are so versatile. I'll give you a recipe for every course!
- Curried Apple and Squash Soup I haven't made this particular recipe yet, but I want to try it.
- Apple and Endive Salad I make this. It's a refreshing change from the standard greens/red peppers/cucumber salad that I usually make! Apples are good thrown into almost any green salad, or try shredding them into your coleslaw.
- Apple Stuffed Pork Chops I am the only fan of pork in my house, so I don't ever get to cook it. But I order it when I go out, and this sounds like something I would definitely order in a restaurant. Go for it!
- Apples Bean Bake reminds me of something I used to make when I was a vegetarian. The apples rather mimic the texture and taste of pork. Try it even if you're a meat eater. It sounds good.
- My family recently discovered that we love brussels sprouts. Here's a recipe I'm going to try soon: Warm Brussels Sprouts with Apples and Red Onion.
- Apple Beer Bread benefits from a double shot of apples: once with the Granny Smith apples, and again with a shot of hard cider.
- And how about some lovely sauteed apples? I like to melt butter in my cast iron skillet, and then caramalize some brown sugar and cinnamon. Then I lay down the apple slices, and cook them until they're nice and soft, turning them once. These are great for breakfast, or as a side to chicken.
- Now, what about dessert? Well, you could take the healthy route, and offer your dinner companions a nice platter of assorted apple slices and a variety of cheeses. Cheddar goes particularly well with apples. Port wine is so lovely with this if you like wine.