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Posts tagged ‘apple turnovers’

And Now We Have To Move

Until yesterday, I had at least one neighbor who didn’t think I was nuts–one neighbor who wasn’t home the morning I went door to door looking for bourbon.  (It was for a cake, y’all.)  She was a blank slate, and I was going to write all over her with kindness and oatmeal cookies.  I was going to become her best friend.

But yesterday–for a very good reasonI got down on my hands and knees behind her house and tried to rip the insulation out of her basement wall.

I didn’t think she was home.

She was.

This is what I wish I’d told her:

1.  It all started when I was outside supervising Splash Fest 2012.

Splash Fest 2012. Two weeks after I bought a space heater.

2.  I ran inside for a minute, and Thunder walked out of a gate that’s always closed.  (Except, apparently, when it’s not.)

3.  I let out a scream that I usually reserve for full-body waxes and hyena attacks.

4.  We had a tearful reunion in my neighbor’s yard.  I was all “I love you!” and Thunder was all “No, I love you!”  “Meh.”

5.  I noticed insulation foam sticking out of my neighbor’s wall.  I worried that Thunder had nibbled on it because she was licking her chops.

I poked at it, to see if she could have bitten some off.  I sniffed at it, to see if it smelled like food.

And that’s when I heard someone behind me say “hello?”

I froze.  I mean, what was I supposed to say? 

“Don’t mind me!  I’M JUST HERE TO HUFF YOUR INSULATION.”

“Heeeey, we’ll be out of here in a second!  MY DOG IS JUST EATING YOUR HOUSE.”

Or my go-to: “Hi there!  GOT ANY BOURBON?”

None of these seemed like a good option, so I didn’t say anything.  For a really long time.  It felt like long enough for this teeny tiny flower to sprout, bloom, and die.

Eventually Thunder waddled back to her baby pool, got in it, and peed.

It was just the break I needed to say “Well, looks like my work here is done.  TOODLES!”

And that’s why we need to move to another state.

~~~

After this went down, I made some comfort food.  I may give some to my neighbor, who’s probably experiencing a lot of discomfort right now.

It’s homemade apple sauce, or apple butter, depending on how long you cook it.  Mine was somewhere in between.  I left most of it chunky, and I’ve been eating it cold– spooned on top of plain yogurt, or with a dollop of creme fraiche.  You can also serve it warm with pork or chicken, or spoon it on top of vanilla ice cream.

You can puree it, too, and get a real apple sauce thing going on.

I didn't can it. We're not that advanced around here. We just stick things in mason jars.

And with a puff pastry sheet, you can do this:

You should, by the way.  They taste like you and your favorite neighbor jetted to France to hang out in a bakery.

Not that I would know.

For one of them, I threw some cheddar cheese in with the apples.

Homemade Cinnamon Apple Sauce or Apple Butter {Download & Print Recipe}

(Adapted from The Beekman 1802 Heirloom Cookbook)

Ingredients:

4 large apples (any kind–I used 2 Fuji and 2 Pacific Rose.)

1/3 c. water

3 tbsp. sugar

1/2 tsp. cinnamon

2-3″ fresh ginger root (enough to yield 2 tsp. ginger puree and juice after being put through a garlic press)

1/2 tsp. vanilla

1 tbsp. fresh lemon juice

Directions:

Peel and core the apples.  Cut them into sixths.

Peel the ginger root and cut it into chunks small enough to fit in a clean garlic press.  Pass each chunk of ginger through the garlic press, catching the juices and the pressed nibs of ginger in a small bowl, and discarding the ginger remaining in the press each time.

In a large pot with a lid, combine the water, ginger, and sugar.  Stir.  Add the apples and stir once or twice.  Cover and bring to a boil over medium-high heat.  Reduce to a summer and cook, covered but stirring occasionally, until the apples are tender and caramel brown, and the water has nearly evaporated–about an hour.

Add the vanilla and the lemon juice.  [Add lemon even if you used tart apples, as it makes the flavors pop.]  If the apples need more sugar or spices, add them while the apples are still warm.  Serve apple slices or, for an apple sauce consistency, purée.

If you’re going for apple butter, puree it, return it to the pot, and let it simmer slowly, until it thickens to the consistency you like.

~~~

Apple Butter Turnovers {Download & Print Recipe}

(From The Beekman 1802 Heirloom Cookbook— the ingredients are as listed in the book but I made the ginger and cardamom optional and the directions are in my own words.)

Ingredients:

1 sheet puff pastry (1/2 of a 17.3-oz. package), thawed

3/4 c. homemade apple butter (see the recipe above, or use store-bought apple butter. I don’t purée mine for this.)

1 tbsp. butter, melted

1/4 tsp. cinnamon

1/8 tsp. ground ginger (optional)

1/8 tsp. ground cardamom (optional)

1 tbsp. + 2 tsp. sugar

pinch of salt

1  egg, beaten

Directions:

If your puff pastry is frozen, thaw one sheet of it according to the instructions on the package.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

On a lightly floured work surface, roll the pastry out into a 10-inch square.  Cut the pastry into 4 squares of equal size.

Brush the squares with the melted butter (just on the side facing up).  [Note: if you don’t have a pastry brush, you can use your fingers or the back of a spoon.]

In a small bowl, combine the cinnamon, ginger and cardamom (if desired), 1 tbsp. of the sugar, and the salt.  Sprinkle over the butter.

Spoon about 3 tbsp. of the apples onto the bottom half of each square–not all over the square.  Leave about a 3/4″ border on the bottom and the sides.

Brush the border of the square with the beaten egg and fold the top over to enclose the filling.  If desired, press the back of a fork around the three sides of the turnover that form the seams, to make pretty edges.  [Note: dip the fork in flour between each pressing if it starts to stick].

Transfer the turnovers to the baking sheet.  Brush the tops with the beaten egg and sprinkle with the remaining 2 tsp. sugar.  With a small, sharp knife, make 2 small steam vents in the turnovers.

Bake about 20 minutes, until puffed and golden brown.

Yield:

4 pastries.  They’re best the day you make them.

~~~

Two housekeeping items:

1. Thunder is safe now.  Scott fixed the gate so that no man or beast can get in or out.  It makes it almost impossible to have house guests or take out the trash, but whatever.

2. The meatloaf slider recipe should have said 1/4 c. bread crumbs, not 1/2 c.  I noticed I’d messed it up 2 days after I posted, so if you printed the recipe before I fixed it, make a little note.

This series is entitled “Thunder Goes To The Pool.”

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