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Apple Harvest Recipes

By Brenda Hyde

Who can resist a fresh, crisp apple straight from the orchard? Even if you can't grow your own you can find a favorite farm market or orchard each year and take advantage of the apple harvest. My favorite apple treat growing up was Dutch Apple Pie with the sweet brown sugar topping. Every year I find new apple recipes to try because it's such a versatile fruit that can be used in main dishes, desserts, appetizers, side dishes and breads.

Golden Delicious, Granny Smith, Jonathon and Jonagold are good baking apples because they are on the tart, crisp side. Gala are one of my favorite eating apples, as well as Pink Lady. Winesap and McIntosh are known for being great is sauces and cider. Everyone has their favorites, old and new varieties. Experiment and trade ideas with the local cooks near you. Buying apples locally helps the area growers, plus you'll often find they will trade recipes and tips with their customers. Take a weekend drive and find the orchard nearest you this fall!

Apple Upside-Down Pie

1/4 cup butter, cut up
6 tablespoons brown sugar
6 medium, firm apples
1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Peel, core and cut each apple into 12 wedges Place butter and brown sugar in an 8-inch baking pan. Place in oven until butter is melted. Stir mixture; return it to the oven for 6-7 minutes. Remove. Stir, spread evenly over bottom of pan. Arrange apples evenly over butter mixture. Unfold the puff pastry; place on top of apples. Holding pastry down and using a spatula, push the edges down between the apples and baking dish. With the tip of a knife, poke a hole in the center of pastry. Bake 40 to 45 minutes or until pastry is golden brown. Cool completely on a wire rack.

Light Apple Cobbler

5 large Granny Smith apples
1 package spice cake mix
granulated sugar
1 16 oz. jar unsweetened applesauce

Peel apples and slice 1/4 inch thick. Arrange in 9x9 inch baking pan. Sprinkle generously with cinnamon and a small amount of sugar. Sprinkle spice cake mix over apples to cover Spoon the applesauce evenly over the top of the mixture. Bake for 30 minutes in a 350 degree oven. Serve with frozen vanilla yogurt or light whipped topping.

Apple Tart

1/2 cup apple juice, cider or water
3 large, tart baking apples, peeled, cored, and sliced
1 18 oz. roll of refrigerated sugar cookie dough
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
2 Tbsp. lemon juice
Whipped cream

In a large skillet, heat apple juice or water to boiling; add apples and reduce heat. Cover; simmer 3 minutes or until apples are tender. With slotted spoon, remove apple slices. Cool slightly. Press cookie dough into greased and floured 10-inch tart pan or 9-inch pie plate, pressing dough evenly onto the bottom and up the side of the dish. In small bowl, combine sugar and cinnamon. Toss with apple slices and lemon juice. Arrange apple slices on prepared crust. Bake in 375-degree oven, 30 to 40 minutes or until evenly browned and set. Cool slightly. Serve warm topped generously with whipped cream. Makes 8-10 servings.

Apple Sugar Muffins

4 tablespoons shortening
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 egg, beaten
1 cup milk
1 cup apple, peeled and chopped
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
2 cups all purpose flour
3 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 cup crushed corn flakes

Cream shortening and sugar. Add well-beaten egg. Sift flour, add baking powder, salt and 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon; sift again. Add dry ingredients to creamed ingredients, alternating with milk. Stir just enough to mix ingredients until moistened. Fold in chopped apples and corn flakes. Drop into greased muffin tins, filling 2/3 full. Mix 2 tablespoons sugar with 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon. Sprinkle over muffin tops. Bake at 400 degrees for 25 minutes. Serve warm. Makes 12 to 15 muffins.

Apple Chile Chutney

4 cups Granny Smith apples
2 red or green chilies, diced
1/4 cup cider vinegar
1/3 cup brown sugar
6 cloves garlic, minced
2/3 cup water
1 Tbsp. fresh marjoram or 1 tsp. dried

Peel, core and dice the apples; combine all ingredients in a saucepan and cook over medium heat until apples are tender. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Be very careful when chopping hot chilies-I've even worn rubber gloves when working with the really hot ones. If you are not sure about the hotness-try it with one chili and remove the seeds.

Scalloped Apples

6-8 tart apples
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
2 Tbsp. lemon juice
1 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup butter
1/4 cup pecans, chopped

Peel, core and slice apples. Melt butter in a small saucepan and add cinnamon, nutmeg, lemon juice and brown sugar. Heat until sugar is melted. Place apples in a baking dish and pour mixture over apples, sprinkle with pecans and bake for 45 minutes at 350 degrees.

Raisin Apple Bread Pudding

4 cups bread cubes
1 cup chopped apple
1 cup raisins
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups(12 fluid-ounce can) evaporated milk
1/2 cup apple juice or cider
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Caramel ice cream topping (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease 11x7 inch baking dish. Combine bread, apple and raisins in large bowl. Beat eggs in medium bowl. Stir in evaporated milk, apple juice, sugar and cinnamon, mix well. Pour egg mixture over the bread mixture, pressing it into the bread: let stand for 10 minutes. Pour into prepared baking dish. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes or until set and apples are tender. Serve warm with ice cream topping, whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.

Caramel Apple Cookies

1/2 cup vegetable shortening
1 1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1 egg
1/2 apple juice, divided
2 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1 cup apples, peeled and shredded
2 to 3 tbsp. margarine, softened
1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
2 tbsp. water
1 1/2 cup powdered sugar
2 to 4 tbsp. milk
5 tbsp. finely crushed walnuts

Beat shortening and brown sugar in medium bowl until blended; beat in egg. Mix in 1/4 cup apple juice, combined flour, baking soda, salt, and spices; mix in remaining 1/4 cup apple juice and apples. Drop by teaspoonfuls, 2 inches apart, onto greased cookie sheets. Bake at 350 until browned, 10 to 12 minutes. Cool on wire racks. Spread with frosting and sprinkle each cookie with crushed walnuts. Caramel Frosting: Heat margarine, brown sugar, and water over medium high heat in saucepan, stirring until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat; beat in powdered sugar and enough milk to make spreadable consistency; use immediately. If frosting begins to harden, return to low heat and stir in more milk.

Brenda Hyde is a wife, and mom to three, living in the Midwest United States. She is also a freelance writer and editor of Old Fashioned Living.

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