Monday, November 20, 2017

Apple Dumplings with Cider Sauce

Life does not stop moving and that is the reason I cling to for being the worst blogger on the face of the planet. First, I broke my foot. Then we discovered that I have a serious pregnancy complication. Next, my husband received a job offer in a city far, far away and after much prayer and discernment we decided to jump at the opportunity. Over the course of a week, we accepted that job offer and listed our home for sale. I've been going crazy packing up boxes, clearing out our home, all while still on crutches and with a growing bump that makes it quite difficult to perform simple tasks like bending over. Oh, and with my pregnancy complication, I'm not allowed to lift over 5 pounds and technically should be resting nonstop. But how can I do that with three little ones while preparing for a move?

Due to all this, my time in the kitchen as been nonexistent. Friends have been gracious and generous enough to bring us home-cooked meals that have greatly alleviated the burden of meal preparation for us, especially since the crutches have made this and other daily tasks ridiculously cumbersome.

However, I do have an amazing dessert alternative to pumpkin pie to share with you today. I actually made this shortly after my injury. In fact, this recipe made me decide that I wanted to spend as little time cooking in the kitchen as possible until my foot completely heals. While this recipe would certainly be fun to prepare with two healthy feet, I was incredibly frustrated with my awkwardness moving about the entire time and declared "Never again shall I cook with crutches!!" to Paul as I angrily moved about. However, again I stress, this recipe is certainly simple and fun to prepare in ideal circumstances. The dough comes together quickly in the food processor and is pretty much fool-proof in my opinion. It folds beautifully over the apple halves and bakes up to a flakey, tasty biscuit-like consistency. Each dumpling perfectly conceals an apple half filled with a delightful mixture of raisins, butter, and brown sugar. The final cooked biscuit is drizzled with tantalizing cider sauce that, while optional, adds quite a bit of flair and additional apple flavor to the humble dumplings so I certainly would not skip it!

I would certainly eat one of these over pumpkin pie!

Apple Dumplings
Recipe from Cook's Country

2½  cups all-purpose flour
3     tablespoons sugar
2     teaspoons baking powder
¾    teaspoon salt
10   tablespoons (1¼ sticks) unsalted butter, cut into ½-inch pieces and chilled
5     tablespoons vegetable shortening, cut into ½-inch pieces and chilled
¾    cup cold buttermilk

Apple Dumplings
6     tablespoons sugar
1     teaspoon ground cinnamon
3     tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
3     tablespoons golden raisins, chopped
4     Golden Delicious apples (see note)
2     egg whites, lightly beaten

Process flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in food processor until combined. Scatter butter and shortening over flour mixture and pulse until mixture resembles wet sand. Transfer to bowl. Stir in buttermilk until dough forms. Turn out onto lightly floured surface and knead briefly until dough is cohesive. Press dough into 8- by 4-inch rectangle. Cut in half, wrap each half tightly in plastic, and refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour.

Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 425 degrees. Combine sugar and cinnamon in small bowl. In second bowl, combine butter, raisins, and 3 tablespoons cinnamon sugar mixture. Peel apples and halve through equator. Remove core using a melon baller and pack butter mixture into each apple half.

On a lightly floured surface, roll each dough half into 12-inch square. Cut each 12-inch square into four 6-inch squares. Working one at a time, lightly brush edges of dough square with egg white and place apple, cut-side up, in center of each square. Gather dough one corner at a time on top of apple, crimping edges to seal. Using paring knife, cut vent hole in top of each dumpling.

Line rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Arrange dumplings on prepared baking sheet, brush tops with egg white, and sprinkle with remaining cinnamon sugar. Bake until dough is golden brown and juices are bubbling, 20 to 25 minutes. Cool on baking sheet 10 minutes.

Serve with Cider Sauce (recipe below).


Makes about 1½ cups

To make this sauce up to 2 days in advance, reduce the cider mixture until it measures 1½ cups, then refrigerate. When ready to serve, return mixture to simmer and whisk in butter and lemon juice off heat.

1     cup apple cider
1     cup water
1     cup sugar
½    teaspoon ground cinnamon
2     tablespoons unsalted butter
1     tablespoon lemon juice

Bring cider, water, sugar, and cinnamon to simmer in saucepan and cook over medium-high heat until thickened and reduced to 1½ cups, about 15 minutes. Off heat, whisk in butter and lemon juice. Drizzle over dumplings to serve.

1 comment:

  1. Yeah...when I was on crutches I basically did nothing besides lie on the couch and read books to myself and Luke. Much less while pregnant and preparing to move! Majorly impressed you baked anything!! (And I would MUCH prefer these to pumpkin pie!).