Apples, a versatile fruit

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By Deanna Godman

Apples are currently in season and are easily used in recipes or eaten fresh. Several Spencer County cooks willingly shared their favorite ways to use this favorite fall fruit.

Margaret Glasford, a member of the Waterford Homemakers, enjoys serving apples to her guests in a low calorie dish she found through Weight Watchers. Her preferred varieties are Gala and Cameos because she likes sweet and crunchy apples.

“I used to only use Red Delicious but I like others now,” Glasford, who has lived in Spencer County for fourteen years, said. “I also like to dip apples in caramel dip or eat them plain.”

Weight Watchers Apple Salad

1 carton fat free frozen whipped topping

20 ounce can crushed pineapple with juice

1 package of sugar free butterscotch pudding

4 apples, cubed

Mix all ingredients together and serve.

Glasford mentioned that other flavors of pudding can be used in this recipe. She adapted the recipe from the original by adding pistachios.

Kay Greer, who moved to Spencer County in 1967, likes to make apple pies and fresh apple cake during apple season. She gets Red Delicious apples from her stepdaughter Lisa Monroe’s farm in Nelson County.

Greer made up her recipe apple pie recipe and generally does not measure the ingredients. She used approximately 2 cups of apples, sliced and peeled, 1/2 cup of Splenda brown sugar, 1/2 cup of plain Splenda, 2 tablespoons cornstarch, and cinnamon candies. She mixed all the ingredients together and cooked them on the stove for a few minutes to meld the flavors. She put it all in a prepared pie crust and then dotted it with butter. Greer covered it with another crust and baked the pie for approximately one hour or until the crust browned.

Greer usually uses two teaspoons of cinnamon in the pie, but did not have any when she made her most recent one that she took to a Waterford Homemakers potluck meeting. The red cinnamon candy added a touch of color to the filling.

Greer also freezes apples for future use. She peels and slices the apples, then dips them in salt water and puts them in quart freezer bags. Greer tries to put up approximately twenty bags of apples each year.

Greer does not believe in wasting anything, and used the good leftover apple peels from freezing and baking pies to make apple jelly.

“My husband teased me about that. He said, ‘Surely we’re not that poor!’” said Greer, who is originally from Letcher County in Eastern Kentucky.

Rena Baird also freezes apples for use throughout the year. Baird prepares a mixture of one quart of cold water and two tablespoons of lemon juice. She then peels and cores the apples and slices them into the lemon water.

Once she has finished peeling a quart of apples into the water, she drains them and freezes them immediately. If she has more apples to freeze, she starts the process over again. This year, Baird put up fifteen quarts.

One of her family’s favorite apple recipes can be made from fresh or frozen apples.

Cinnamon apples

1 quart of apples, sliced

1 cup of sugar or artificial sweetener

1/3 cup water

1 teaspoon cinnamon

2 tablespoons butter or butter buds

2 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch

1/4 cup cold water

Put the apples in the bottom of a microwave safe dish. Sprinkle with the sweetener. Add water, cinnamon and butter. Cover the dish with waxed paper. Cook in microwave for five minutes on High. Take out of the microwave and break the apples apart if frozen. Cook five more minutes in microwave.

If the apples seem soft and fully cooked, then mix cornstarch in the cold water, and then stir into the apples. Microwave for an additional 2-3 minutes or until the juice is clear and thick.

The tartness and amount of juice in the apples determines how much sweetener and cornstarch will be needed.

Baird’s family enjoys this dish so much that she made it for dinner three times just last week.

“Children especially enjoy it because it’s thick and sweet,” said Baird, who has been a member of the Spencer County Homemakers Association for over fifty years.

If you have an idea for a future At Home article, please contact Deanna at  ideas@funmama.net”. Deanna can also be found on her blog http://blog.funmama.net.