Tuesday, September 6, 2011

~Baked Meringue Apples~

picture from marthastewart.com



It was a long day at the apple orchard.  We left with a large box of apples,an apple peeler and two worn out kids. 

Martha Stewart Living, December/January 1996/1997
  • Yield Serves 6

Ingredients

  • 10 Cortland, Jonathan, or Granny Smith apples, (about 4 pounds)
  • 1 lemon
  • 1/4 cup sugar, plus 1 tablespoon for sprinkling
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons brandy or cognac
  • 1/2 recipe Swiss Meringue Swiss Meringue
  • Caramel Sauce

Directions

  1. Core 6 apples by cutting a cone from the top of each with a paring knife. With a melon baller, scoop out seeds down to the bottom. Juice the lemon into cavity of each apple, and sprinkle each apple with 1/2 teaspoon sugar. Place 3 apples on a microwave-safe plate, and loosely cover with plastic wrap. Microwave on high power until the apples are translucent and cooked through but not caving in, about 3 1/2 to 4 minutes. Remove from the microwave, and repeat with another 3 apples. This cooking time will vary from oven to oven, so turn them occasionally, and check the window periodically. They will bubble up with juices when almost done.
  2. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Peel, core, and slice the remaining 4 apples into 1/4-inch-thick wedges. In a large saucepan, melt butter over high heat. Add apple wedges, and toss to coat. Saute for about 1 minute, and sprinkle 1/4 cup sugar over the apple wedges. Saute, tossing often, until the apples are brown and translucent. Carefully add brandy (it may ignite), and toss again.
  3. Transfer microwaved apples to a baking sheet, and stuff with the sauteed apples. Set aside in a warm place.
  4. Fill a pastry bag fitted with Ateco No. 5 star or any other large star tip with meringue, and pipe out meringue onto each apple in decorative swirls. Place in oven, and bake until meringue just starts to brown, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from oven, and serve warm with caramel sauce.
The recipe says to be careful when adding the brandy because it might ignite...wooohooo now we're talking!  This is a dessert to die for?  Who knew.


Photo Gallery

 Tension was building in the kitchen as the directions clearly warned me that the addition of brandy may cause the hot, sugary apples to ignite.  Scared?  I'm a little jumpy.  I've decided that I'm going to deck out some goggles with glitter for occasions such as this.  I am totally going to do this before the end of the year.  Anyway, as I said, the suspense was building.  Flame or no flame?  We'll see what happens.  I'm crossing my fingers and hoping for a little action.  *The children were not at home while I was playing with fire.  Please keep small children away from flames and exercise extreme caution.*
The kitchen smelled so good.  The butter, apples and sugar created an aroma that definitely made the kitchen smell like fall.  Yum.  Once the brandy was added, the apples began to sizzle loudly.  Sadly, no flames :/  That would have been so cool!
Now it's time to make the caramel.  It takes about five minutes for the sugar to thicken and brown nicely.
It's starting to look like caramel.
Here is the meringue in the making.  I've added the ingredients and now I'm stirring rapidly until the sugar dissolves.  Next, I used my KitchenAid mixer to do the rest.  I love my mixer!
So I got a little bored.  I wanted to see how well the brandy would actually burn.  Come to find out, the brandy burns very well.  The flame was a blue color (indicating it was hot!).  Then it hit me.  Why not use brandy as a candle? Cool huh?  I think I'm going to fill a few heat proof jars with brandy and burn them like candles just for fun.   It was hard to capture the flame on camera during the day- it looks very ethereal.  Be careful with the brandy container once it is lit.  I almost burned off the fingerprints on my right hand when I grabbed the fiery hot ramekin. 
These are the Ateco Pastry Tips.  As luck would have it, I couldn't find the number 5 tip so I just found one that I thought looked good.
After piping the meringue onto the baked apples, I discovered that my smaller torch was out of gas.  Thanks, Ben for letting me borrow your torch! Real women use big torches while baking meringue ;) 
It was fun making these baked apple meringues with sweet caramel sauce.  Since apple season is now upon us,  we bought a giant box of "seconds" from a local apple farm at a very affordable price.  I foresee many more apple recipes being put to use in the near future.  



~Just Dessert~

2 comments:

yinzerella said...

Those are impressive.

The Green Mama said...

Dear Yinzerella,

Thanks. I've found that anything with meringue seems to spruce up a simple dessert. :)

Live Well,

Morgan

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