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|Our farmer’s markets are brimming with tempting apple varieties, and we’re enjoying more than one apple a day. Beyond a snack fruit, it’s easy to work apples into daily meals. Here are a baker’s dozen of ideas.
1. Lightly saute apple wedges and serve them with eggs, pancakes, oatmeal and other breakfast foods. Toss in some nuts, raisins and other dried fruits, too. You can serve this dish as a side with dinner as well.
2. Bake apples into muffins and breads.
3. Try a Waldorf salad, the classic apple salad, and go light on the mayo.
4. Make chicken salad with large chunks of chicken and apples. Add walnuts, pecans or almonds.
5. Add thin slices to a ham, chicken or turkey sandwich.
|6. Applesauce is a great side with poultry or pork, and homemade applesauce is infinitely superior to the commercial product. We use McIntosh apples (Braeburns or Fujis work, too) and cook them with skins on, which gives the applesauce a beautiful, rosy color. Use a food mill to puree and remove the skins after cooking. Homemade applesauce is also a delectable dessert, with a small stream of heavy cream.
7. Stuff a pork roast with apples.
8. Serve apples with cheese, as a dessert course. Cheddar, Stilton and Roquefort are some of our favorite pairings. For the kids, make Cheddar and apple skewers.
9. Make apple sorbet.
10. Dip fresh apple slices in warm caramel sauce. It’s an adult riff on a caramel apple.
11. There’s nothing better than a warm, homemade apple pie or crumble. Our mother’s is the best (unless your mother’s is). She prefers tart apples like Winesaps, when she can find them, or else Granny Smiths. We prefer streusel to crust, so love to make crumbles.
12. Baked apples are terrific, whether warm from the oven or cold from the fridge. Try them with fresh goat cheese or goat’s milk yogurt, for dessert or for breakfast.
13. Serve an apple dessert course of four or six different varieties of apple. Give everyone slices of each (an apple slicer is helpful here). Discuss the different flavor profiles.
Enjoy apples while they’re freshly-harvested. While apples are available throughout the winter, you’re buying fruit that’s been put in cold storage. It loses its flavor and texture every day it’s off the tree.
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