My little dumpling

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Today’s post is an accidental adventure.  I was making a clean-out-the-refrigerator quiche and had an extra single pie crust.  I didn’t have enough apples to make a full pie, then remembered I  had an apple dumpling for the first time  about a year ago.  I gave it a try.

dumpling

Dumplings are balls of dough wrapping meat, fruit, vegetables, and cheeses; they are baked, fried, boiled or steamed. I never realized how versatile they are!

I chose my recipe from AllRecipes.

green apples

pastry

sauce

Patty’s Points

1.  AllRecipes.com is a great website. You can develop a profile and have a box of saved recipes to go back and refer to. You can also adjust the number served on the recipe and the website will automatically change the ingredient measurements. Very cool!

2. I never realized how differently apple dumplings are made. I made mine for a couple of people.  The Pioneer Woman Apple Dumplings version is a big casserole dish to serve a big family or a crowd at a potluck.

3. I learned from a Martha’s New Year’s Celebration DVD  how to make the leaves for my dumpling crust. I found a “how-to”  from this Pear Dumpling video from Martha Stewart’s website. That is my tiny bit of creativity 🙂

All I can say is EASY. What a nice way to do something with leftover scrapes of pastry dough, especially with all the upcoming pies that will be made during the holiday season. Enjoy!

 

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Julie’s Apple Butter

The cooking club members gathered at Julie’s house this past week to relax and enjoy the beautiful fall we have had this year.

2013 Fall

We had a fall assortment of dishes; tomato bisque, mini pepper appetizers, apples with salted pumpkin caramel sauce, fresh grapes, pumpkin bread, and sweet potato pie. We also got an lesson on how Applejack liqueur is made from fermented apples that freeze in the winter. I mixed my 1/2 shot of Laird’s Applejack with warm apple cider. My legs got a little warm and numb with that 80 proof concoction.

applejack

Afterward, we commenced to making Julie’s family apple butter recipe. She cut the original recipe down for an easy undertaking.  Julie likes using Pink Lady apples.

Julie’s Apple Butter

6 C diced apples (about 6 medium to large apples)

1 2/3 C apple cider

1/4 C apple cider vinegar

1 1/3 C sugar

2/3 tsp cinnamon

1/8 tsp cloves

1/8 tsp allspice

Peel, core, and dice 6 medium to large sized apples to make 6 cups.

pink lady apples

Place in cooking pan and add the cider and cider vinegar.  Place on high heat until boiling for about 20 minutes, stir occasionally. Reduce to medium heat and add the sugar and spices, mix well and stir occasionally.  After another 20-30 minutes reduce the heat again to medium-low and cook for another 40-45 minutes. The apples will be soft and with a brown syrupy liquid. Remove from heat then mash the apples to eliminate the lumps. Place into jars and either process for canning or place in refrigerator for up to one week (if it lasts that long :))

cooking it down

Patty’s Points:

1.  Since the cooking process is 1 1/2 hours, we had to leave Julie’s house before seeing the final product. I made a batch at home tonight. It was easy to let it cook on the stove while I did other chores around the house.

2. I couldn’t find Pink Lady apples at my local supermarket. I found this website on the best apples for making apple butter. I chose Fuji apples from the list. The apple should be a softer type apple

3. I used my apple corer-slicer-peeler and the process went very quickly in prepping the apples.

apple peeler

4. I used my hand emulsion blender when the apples had cooked through to mash the apples into butter.

emulsion blender

5.  It is a very sweet butter with the sugar and the apple cider combination. You could easily decrease the sugar to one cup or less to your taste. I also substituted the spices listed in the recipe with 1 tsp of apple pie spice. What a yummy, smooth and sweet butter. It was yummy to top on buttered, whole wheat bread.

apple butterI had never made apple butter before this week. I felt my midwestern roots when making this classic recipe. A  flashback to childhood.

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