Wednesday, January 28, 2009

What does a person do with pounds of apples?

Make apple stuff, apparently. I bought a bag of apples for $1 during one of the grocery stores' big "Lots of Stuff is $1" sale with the express intention of making an apple pie. Then, I bought another bag of apples a week later. I have no excuse or explanation for that one. When I finally sat down the other day to prepare my pie (s), I realized I had a handful of apples I had originally purchased to eat, as well. I had planned to make one apple pie, so I did. This is the only apple pie recipe I use, because it always turns out delicious, and I prefer the crumb topping to two pie crusts.

Apple Pie
1 (9 inch) pie crust
6 cups apples, cored, peeled and sliced
1 tablespoon lemon juice
3/4 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
3 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons tapioca

1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup all purpose flour
3 tablespoons butter, softened

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare pie plate with crust. Mix together apples, lemon juice, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, flour and tapioca. Mix well. Pour mixture into crust. In the same bowl, mix together brown sugar and flour. Cut the butter into the mixture until coarse crumbs form. Gently press the strudel mixture evenly onto the apple mixture. Bake in the preheated oven 25 - 35 minutes or until golden brown.

I still had 12 cups worth of sliced apples, though. I wanted to make some apple bread to freeze, but all of the recipes I could find called for butter, not oil. I like to substitute half or more of the oil with applesauce because it makes it lower in fat, but it doesn't work as well with butter. My brother found the recipe for an apple cake he wanted, but it called for caramel, and I didn't have any, and have been snowed in for several days, so that wasn't an option. I ended up making a second apple pie and tossing it in the freezer (precooked).

I also made an apple-cranberry crisp. This was great, because it used up some of the cranberries in the freezer, too!

Apple Cranberry Crisp
6 cups apples, peeled, cored and thinly sliced
3/4 cup cranberries
1/3 cup white sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/3 cup quick-cooking oats
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup butter, cut into pieces

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Spray an 8 inch square baking dish with non stick cooking spray. In a large bowl, mix together apples, cranberries, white sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg. Place evenly into baking dish. In the same bowl, combine oats, flour and brown sugar. With a fork, mix in butter until crumbly. Sprinkle over apples. Bake in preheated oven for 40 to 50 minutes, or until topping is golden brown, and apples are tender.

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