I like to save some of the fruit that I’ve preserved from summer and fall like canned peaches, cherries, blueberries, rhubarb and dried apricots so that I can incorporate them into recipes. They add that light, bright, fruity flavor that gets me thinking that spring and summer are just around the corner. One of my favorite desserts is a baked apple. I know, apples say fall but combining them with a jam like peach or cherry with a crunchy butter crumb and some whipped cream gives that warm weather taste to an otherwise fall darling. I like to double up flavors as well, so pairing it with crisp dry cider flavored with a dash of peach canning syrup makes it interesting, light and not too sweet.
Makes 6 servings
FOR THE FILLING:
3 apples—I like fuji and honey crisp but just about any apple works
1 tablespoon peach, cherry or apricot jam
FOR THE CRUMB TOPPING:
2 ounces salted butter, cut into small pieces
2 ounces sugar
2 ounces Farmer All Purpose Ground flour
Preheat oven to 375°.
Lightly grease a 6-hole muffin pan. The trick to this recipe is choosing an apple that’s slightly larger than a standard muffin pan. Pull the stems and cut the apples in half around the equator. No need to peel them. Scoop the core, being careful to not make a hole in the bottom.
Place the apples cut side up in the muffin pan and fill the scooped out centers with jam. In a small bowl, mix the butter, sugar and flour with a fork, pastry cutter or your fingers until it resembles pea sized crumbs. Sprinkle an even layer over the 6 apple halves.
Bake for 25–30 minutes or until the apples are golden brown and tender. Allow to cool for 5 minutes, then remove apples from the pan with a spoon or small spatula. Serve warm with a dollop of whipped cream and home-canned peach slices. (A nice late harvest Riesling wouldn’t be a bad idea either.)