Autumn’s Apple Recipes

Apples are an autumnal favorite in Virginia, whether fresh from the tree or baked into cakes, pies or puddings. Here are three of our favorite apple recipes.

Apple Squares

1 3/4 cups sugar

3 eggs

1 cup vegetable oil

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon cinnamon

2 cups chopped peeled apples

1 cup chopped nuts

Confectioners’ sugar for dusting

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Beat the sugar, eggs and oil in a large bowl until well blended. Combine the baking soda, salt, flour and cinnamon in a bowl. Add the dry mixture gradually to the egg mixture and beat well. Fold in the apples and nuts. Pour the batter into a 9″-by-13″ pan, and bake for 1 hour. Dust with confectioners’ sugar, and cut into squares to serve.

Apple Black Walnut Pudding Cake

1 pound golden raisins

1 1/2 cups apple brandy

2 to 3 Granny Smith apples, peeled & cored

(to yield 1 cup roasted apple puree)

1 1/4 cups sugar

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon cloves

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

3/4 cup coarsely chopped black walnuts

1/2 cup half-and-half

Two days before serving, combine raisins and apple brandy in a bowl. Cover and macerate at room temperature overnight. The day before serving: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut apples into eighths. Place in a single layer in a baking dish. Cover loosely with foil and roast in oven until soft, about 30 minutes. Puree roasted apples with fork or blender. Measure 1 cup of the puree and place in a large mixing bowl. Add sugar, vegetable oil, and vanilla. Mix manually until well incorporated. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Sift together flour, baking soda, salt, cloves, cinnamon, and ginger. Stir into the apple mixture. Stir together the walnuts, half-and half, and raisin brandy mixture. Fold into the flour-apple mixture and pour into a well-greased 9- or 12-cup Bundt pan. Bake cake until firm on top, about 40 to 50 minutes. (The cake will still be sticky in the center.) Cool and then chill overnight in the Bundt pan. On the day of serving carefully loosen sides of chilled cake with knife. Place Bundt pan in several inches of hot water for 5 minutes. Unmold cake by flipping onto a flat serving plate. Serve topped with Mascarpone Cream.

For Mascarpone Cream:

1/2 pound mascarpone

1/2 cup light-brown sugar

1/4 cup brandy

1 cup heavy cream

Whisk together mascarpone, brandy and brown sugar until smooth. Add heavy cream and whisk until thickened. Serve a small amount with each slice of cake.

Jefferson’s Apple Pudding

Think fusion cuisine is a new trend? Wrong. Jefferson himself incorporated culinary techniques and ingredients from other cultures into his feasts at Monticello. Here is Jefferson’s recipe for apple pudding, in his own words:

“Peel and boil until tender 3 or 4 apples. Press through a sieve. To one cup of the puree add 1/2 cup of cream and butter. Let cool. Add 3 well-beaten eggs, 1/2 cup of powdered sugar, the rind of 1 lemon. Mix all well together and put in a crust. Half an hour will bake it. This pudding is made with either fresh or dried apple.”

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