People usually associate apples with autumn and the changing seasons, when the fruit is picked from the tree and harvested. But because apples store well in cellars, they are an all-winter-long fruit as well. Thanks to our bountiful farm share, we’ve had so many more apples than I’ve known what to do this year, and it looks like we’ll be eating them long into the winter. People keep suggesting I make applesauce but honestly I don’t really like to eat it. I’ve found other ways to add apples in here and there—including them in our Thanksgiving stuffing, roasted kohlrabi dishes, and this delicious Gouda bread—but I’ve also been wanting to try out a pop tart recipe for awhile and apples seemed like a fitting filling, considering my bumper crop. When I stumbled on this hand pie recipe last week, I thought I’d make it my last recipe in Berlin in 2013, before heading to the US for our big holiday trip.
Not only was I happy to use up some of our apple reserves, but I’m so glad I discovered this pastry recipe, which is absolutely divine, so flaky and buttery and just delicious. I’ll definitely be playing with it again, so don’t be surprised if you see it sometime soon. For the filling I’ve made my own deep dark caramel sauce but the recipe can be simplified to use store-bought caramels instead. I baked the tarts to a nice dark caramelized brown, but you can reduce the cooking time by a few minutes if you prefer golden brown. These tarts are so delicious it’s hard to not eat several in one sitting, and I’m already daydreaming about my next batch. And since we still have plenty of apples, that’s not really a problem!
This week I landed back in the US, and am busy enjoying some much-needed time with friends and family. But I’ve had a little inspiration for a special cookie recipe that I’m excited about, so I’ll try and share it next week before the holidays. Until then! Read More
We’re gearing up for our second Thanksgiving in Berlin and before things get too crazy in the kitchen I wanted to share a last minute holiday recipe. Like most of our CSA haul, the pumpkins came in a big batch—at one point we had at least 10 pumpkins sitting on our windowsills! This week I turned most of them into pumpkin butter, and in turn, this batch of pumpkin muffins. Fluffy, slightly sweet, and full of pumpkin flavor, they are a great way to get the veg on the table, regardless of the feast. Happy Thanksgiving!
Pumpkin Muffins, adapted from Pinch of Yum
Servings: 16 muffins
3½ cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
3 teaspoons Lebkuchen spice
½ teaspoon salt
¾ cup granulated sugar
2 cups pumpkin purée
½ olive oil
¼ cup maple syrup
½ cup sugar
3 tablespoons orange juice
Preheat the oven to 350°F. In a bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, spice, salt, and sugar. In a separate bowl, combine the purée, olive oil, maple syrup, and eggs. Mix the flour into the wet mixture and stir to combine thoroughly. Scoop the batter into muffin cups or into a lightly greased loaf pan. Bake for 20 minutes, until the tops are golden brown. Remove from the oven and place on a cooling rack.
While the muffins are cooling, prepare the syrup. Place a small pot over medium high heat and cover the bottom with a thin layer of the remaining ½ cup sugar. When all the sugar is melted and golden brown, add another thin layer of sugar. Repeat until all the sugar is melted and the caramel reaches a dark auburn brown. Remove from heat and add the orange juice, being careful as the pot will splatter. Return to heat and cook down until the mixture thickens into a pourable syrup. Drizzle the syrup on top of the muffins and serve.
Even though I find myself in Germany days before the most American of holidays, we’re still planning to cook a Thanksgiving meal this week. And thankfully my sister just happens to be in town, along with some of her best friends from New York, so we have some great company to celebrate with! Although I’m going to try and find a turkey to roast for TH, I’m also planning on including a few German recipes in the menu.
One dish that I’ve made for some of our best Thanksgiving meals is German red cabbage. It’s something that I’ve been eating, either out in German restaurants alongside a nice plate of bratwurst and potatoes, or this home version, since I was a child. A good dose of tangy apple cider vinegar mixes with brown sugar to create a tart, slightly sweet flavor, helping to cut through rich meat preparations (making it an excellent addition to the Thanksgiving table). And it’s simply made, just chop up onion, apple, and cabbage and let the dish cook while focusing on the more intricate elements of the meal.
German Red Cabbage
Servings: 4 quarts
2 tablespoons bacon fat
1 medium onion, skin removed and thinly sliced
2 medium red apples, cores removed and thinly sliced
1 medium head red cabbage
¼ cup brown sugar
¼ cup apple cider vinegar
¼ cup water
1¼ teaspoons salt
In a medium-sized, heavy-bottom pot, heat the bacon fat over medium heat. Add the onion and apple and cook 5 minutes until it just starts to sweat. Add the red cabbage, cover with sugar, vinegar, water, and salt, and cover. Reduce heat to low and cook for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally, until cabbage is soft.