There’s a quote by George Bernard Shaw that goes like this: “If you have an apple and i have an apple and we exchange these apples then you and i will still have one apple. But if you have an idea and i have an idea and we exchange these ideas, then each of us will have two ideas.” The moral of the story? ..euh… i don’t know… but if you have a million dollar idea, send it to me and i’ll send you some baked apples in return, deal?
When the weather turns bad, i turn to apples, but i’m also a little bit flakey so if you are reading this from under a palm tree in some exotic location know that i would trade my apples for your pineapples in a New York minute. This recipe is a favorite at work and one of the first one i published on my old blog with [gulp].. pictures taken with an iphone. What was i thinking!? You deserve much better than that my friends which brings us to this updated version.
These baked apples are stuffed with a mixture of apricots, raisins, walnuts, brown sugar and butter and cooked in orange juice. The cinnamon stick imparts some cinnamon-ey aroma of course but also act as the “apple stem”. Clever, eh? Baste the apples as the orange juice reduces and they will take on that beautiful golden color and serve them with the remaining syrup. When it’s done, the apples are so soft you can eat them with a spoon. It’s a delicious dessert with great visual appeal and needless to say, an healthier alternative to the good ol’ apple pie.
Now, where is my million dollar idea?
Baked Apples with Apricots, Raisins & Walnuts,
- Serves 4
For the baked apples
- 4 apples (Cortland, Granny Smith, Golden Delicious or Winesap…), cap off, peeled and cored (see pic above)
- 1 cup dried apricots, diced
- 1/2 cup dried raisins (or cranberries)
- 1/2 cup walnuts, roughly chopped
- 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
- 4 tablespoons butter, softened
- 4 cinnamon sticks
- 4 oranges, juiced
- Preheat the oven to 350′F.
- Cut off the cap of each apple, peel and core (see picture below).
- In a medium bowl, mix the apricots, raisins, walnuts, brown sugar and butter until well combined. (You can soak the dried fruit in a Grand-Marnier syrup ahead of time if you want.)
- Divide the stuffing equally between the apples, replace the cap and put a cinnamon stick in place of the apple stem.
- Place the apples in a shallow oven dish and pour the orange juice over them.
- Bake for 1 hour basting the apples with the orange juice, every 10 minutes or so (The apples are ready when soft, golden and shiny and the juice is reduced to a glaze).
- Serve immediately or at room temperature.
For the baked apples: