September 17, 2011

The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree

I love the fall. Now, I know it’s not officially fall yet but the temperature has dropped and the air has become brisk so it sure as heck feels like it’s begun!
Little man and I took a drive out east on yesterday. When we woke up this morning it was a perfect day for apple picking. So we researched the best place to go out here and found the Seven Ponds Orchard in Southampton. We drove over and were greeted by the super friendly owners who gave us a quick overview on how to pick the apples and the types that were ready to be picked. We got to take one of their radio flyer wagons to haul around our bags of goodies…and of course, a little man. The LM was really enjoying helping me put the picked apples into the bags…until he realized, hang on a second here, why aren’t I tasting these bad boys? So he started munching away on a large red McIntosh. I took a bite just to make sure it tasted good…and holy cow. I don’t even like McIntosh’s but this apple was out of this world! I loaded up with half a dozen of these because I was planning to stuff them with pork and bake for dinner tomorrow night…see recipe below.

We moved onward to the honey crisp row. My husband’s favorite. These apples are crunchy like Granny Smith’s but sweet like a golden apple. Truly unreal. We got a half dozen of these puppies to keep on hand for snacking. Then we picked up a half dozen gala apples to make an apple crumble.
They also sold a variety of locally grown veggies at this orchard so I loaded up with green beans and spaghetti squash to make with dinner tomorrow night.
After we paid for our goods (apples were sold for $1.49/pound) my LM got to run around and play in the corn maze where they have all sorts of wooden structures for the kids to climb on.  What a great way to shake his jimmies out!

Over the weekend when my husband came out we put these apples to good use. He snacked on the honey crisps, as did the little man…

And I used the rest to make some fantastic dishes for dinner with the in laws…
One recipe that I really love which I saw on the today show last fall is Seasonal and Savory stuffed apples by Jose Andres. When I saw the segment on TV the chef used ground pork which I thought was a really nice compliment to the apple but you can also use ground beef, veal or whatever you’d like for this same recipe. Trust me when I tell you…these are absolutely amazing. And really nice to entertain with!

On the side I made another fan favorite…cheese and pepper (cacio e pepe) spaghetti squash by Rachael Ray. Healthy, seasonal and delicious. A must! And finally I serve with green beans sauteed with shallots, garlic and slivered almonds. The perfect menu.
For dessert…we don’t mess around. I made my Aunt Marissa’s famous crunchy topped apple crumble. The recipe is insanely easy and this dessert is heavenly. Want to try it? Ok, here you go…
Aunt Marissa’s crunchy topped apple crumble ~
* 1 cup brown sugar
* 3/4 cup flour
* 3/4 cup butter (cut into chunks)
* 1/2 cup (go a little over – eyeball it) rolled oats
* 1.5 tsp cinnamon (I just eyeball this…I love cinnamon but go easy with it!)
* 6 apples peeled, cored, sliced thin
Heat oven to 375.
Mix the above ingrediants (except for the apples) together well till you get chunky little balls. Should look like this photo.
Lay the apples flat onto a baking dish. I used an 8×8 Pyrex and the crumble cooked perfectly.

Top the mixture onto the apples evenly and bake for 35-40 minutes till nicely browned…

Serve with fresh whip cream if you’re as ambitious as my husband is…and here’s why I used the title for this blog…this apple certainly didn’t fall far from the tree! The kid loves whip cream just like his papa and his poppi…can’t blame em. It’s pretty darn tasty!

xx, Seri
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