1. LINE a 5-to-6 quart slow cooker with a Reynolds Slow Cooker Liner. Open a slow cooker liner and place it inside a slow cooker bowl. Fit the liner snugly against the bottom and sides of bowl; pull top of the liner over the rim of the bowl.
2. PLACE the apples in the bowl and drizzle with lemon juice.
3. MIX the granulated sugar, brown sugar, flour, cinnamon and nutmeg in a medium bowl. Sprinkle the mixture over the apples; stir gently with a rubber spatula to coat the apples. Drizzle with butter.
4. PLACE the lid on the slow cooker and cook on the low-heat setting for 3 hours or on the high-heat setting for 2 hours, until the apples are done.
5. CAREFULLY REMOVE the lid to allow the steam to escape. Transfer the apples to serving bowls and top with ice cream or whipped cream; or spoon the apples over a scoop of ice cream. Serve with cookies, if desired.
6. COOL the slow cooker completely; remove the liner and toss. Do not lift or transport the liner with food inside.
“AN APPLE A DAY” ORIGIN
According to a website that tracks the origins of English phrases, the earliest known print reference dates to Wales in 1866:
Eat an apple on going to bed, And you’ll keep the doctor from earning his bread.
By the turn of the 20th century, a number of variants of the rhyme were in circulation, including the one popular in the U.S.
Why were apples singled out to keep the doctor away? While they are healthful*, the answer is more complex. In Old English, “apple” was used to describe any round fruit that grew on a tree. Adam and Eve’s forbidden fruit is cited in English as an apple; but the word in the original Hebrew and the subsequent 1611 King James version of the Bible, it simply called “a fruit.”
Most historians believe that the apple originated in the Dzungarian Alps, a mountain range separating China from Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan (far away from the Middle East/Garden of Eden). Scholars believe that the fruit tree in the Middle East, the designated home of the Garden Of Eden, may actually have been a pomegranate.
*According to Phrases.org.uk and medical resources: Apples contain vitamin C, which aids the immune system, and phenols, which reduce cholesterol. Apples help to reduce tooth decay by killing bacteria that adhere to the teeth. Cornell University researchers believe that the quercetin in apples protects the brain cells against neuro-degenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s Disease.