It's hard to think of any food that conjures up autumn more than apples. There are apple pies, crisps and brown betties for dessert. Some people like to add apples to braised cabbage. Stewed apples, another favorite, is an incredibly easy dish to prepare even when you get fancy, like this recipe. You could serve these hot with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, wrapped in buckwheat crepes with a dollop of mascarpone cheese or as just a healthy dessert, letting their simple goodness shine through.
- Add enough rum, apple brandy or water to a small saucepan to just cover the bottom.
- Add the apples, molasses, butter, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, allspice and salt and stir to blend.
- Place over low heat partially covers and simmer gently until the apples are tender about 30 minutes.
Comparing Apples to Apples
The many varieties of apples you find in a vast array in the grocery store or at farmers' markets make a gorgeous and bountiful display, but which ones are the best for eating and which for cooking?
Once you know which varieties are best for baking, you can then narrow down your choice to the type that is best for using in whatever apple-something you are making.
- Jonathans and Jonagolds top many lists as the all-around best apples to cook with. They are a mix of sweet and tart and hold up well in cooking. They are a big favorite for pies.
- Honeycrisps are the current trend apple. There's a good reason for that: They are super sweet and super juicy, and they keep their shape when they're cooked. They're also high on the best-to-eat list.
- Braeburns are both sweet and tart, and they smell good too. They are a go-to apple for applesauce and would also be a top choice for stewed apples.
- McIntoshes are sweet and juicy and make the most of the applesauce or stewed apples.
- Winesaps are juicy and sturdy and are a good choice for pie, other baked goods, applesauce and stewed apples.
- Fujis are good for all kinds of baking -- and eating, too. If you aren't sure if you want to bake with the apples or just crunch into them raw, this is the choice to make.
- Granny Smiths are a favorite for pies. They have firm flesh and serious tartness that adds a twist to apple pie.