Friday, March 5, 2010

Honey Baked Apples

For once, I shall blog not something that I have made, but something that someone else makes that I love eating.
Baked apples! Sweet and tart, with the juices caramelized around them.
Hot, fresh from the oven.
Very good with homemade icecream.
(can you tell yet that I love these apples?)

There is no specific recipe, you just go with what feels right (my kind of cooking!)

1 or 2 or 3 apples, depending on size. quartered or eighthed and cored. they should cover the bottom of a 9x13 pyrex baking dish with some space between - but don't put them in the dish yet. The better - tasting and crisper your apples are the better this dessert will taste.
about 1/4 to 1/3 cup honey - do put this in the dish
juice of one lemon - also in the dish
several healthy sprinkles of cinnamon - into the dish
1 to 2 Tbsp melted butter - in the dish
Mix the honey, lemon, cinnamon, and butter together until fairly homogeneous. Put your apple slices on top, turning once to coat them all over. Put in the oven uncovered and bake at 400* for 15 minutes, reduce heat to 375* and bake until the apples are tender and the juices are reduced and fragrant (but not burnt) about 30 to 60 minutes.
Serve immediately with caramelized juices poured over top and a little vanilla icecream to the side.

Recipe Variations -
vary the seasonings by adding lemon zest, or nutmeg, or a dash of cloves to the mix. Alcohol-based extracts (like vanilla) do not work with this recipe because they cook out.
vary the fruit - replace the apples with pears, or add a handful of raisins or dried currants or some fresh berries in the last five minutes of cooking.
change up the honey - different honeys have different flavors. If you don't like store-bought clover honey, try local wildflower honey, orange honey, or my favorite - blackberry honey.

Enjoy playing around with this recipe, if you stay pretty close to the proportions mentioned in the recipe, you're guaranteed to have a great dessert. 


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