Sunday, March 22, 2015

Southern Fried Apples

Who doesn't love apples? Whether they're raw or cooked, I'll eat them with breakfast, dinner or a snack. Growing up in the Nutmeg State, you couldn't get through the fall without celebrating apple picking time with the Apple Harvest parade in Southington. I can remember my Dad buying us huge, red apples for a dime and the crisp crunch with that first bite. As a kid, I always loved it when my Mother would fix apple sauce with pork chops and to this day, this is one of my favorite combinations. Whenever we have an abundance of apples, we will use our "Rotato" device to peel, core, slice and put up apples. Depending on the time available, I will vacuum seal and freeze them raw (soaked in lemon juice so they don't brown) or can them in pint jars. The canning does take a little more time on the front end, but it's worth the effort when you can grab a jar to fix fried apples to go with a country ham, egg and biscuit breakfast. The sweet offsets the salty bite of the ham.
In a skillet (preferably a black cast iron skillet but a non-stick will work.) melt a stick of butter. When the butter is bubbling, add your raw or canned apples. I have never measured how much sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg or ground cloves I add but it always seems to taste the same. I would start with 1/2 cup sugar, 1 tablespoon of cinnamon and a 1/8 teaspoon of ground cloves and nutmeg. Stir well.
Take a taste of the "broth" to see if you're satisfied with the spices. Add more as needed. Bring to a boil.
Let  the mixture cook at medium high to high and turn every so often. When sauce thickens and apples are tender, they're ready to eat. And did I mention these warm apples are incredible over vanilla ice cream?

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