Baked apples are incredible for breakfast. There, alongside a stack of pancakes, their cozy, wrinkly exterior and elemental sweetness taste right at home.
During Rosh Hashanah, when apples are at their seasonal and symbolic peaks, they are even better. Most importantly for hurried weekday mornings, or leisurely holiday ones, baked apples’ flavor intensifies overnight in the fridge and they are delicious cold or at room temperature, which makes them the perfect make-ahead breakfast or brunch dish.
You can serve baked apples with yogurt, because that’s what you are supposed to do at breakfast time. Or, serve them with ice cream because you’re an adult, and you can à la mode any time you want. Either way, it will get your morning, and the Jewish New Year, off to a very sweet start.
6 medium McIntosh apples** (or another good baking apple)
¼ cup light brown sugar
½ cup granola (homemade or store-bought)
2 tablespoons raisins, optional
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
Zest of ½ a lemon
Pinch of salt
2 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1 cup boiling water
1. Preheat oven to 375˚ F. Using a sharp paring knife, cut out each apple stem. Use a spoon or melon baller to scoop out the cores, leaving the bottom ½ inch of the apples intact. The holes left in the apples should be about an inch wide.
2. Stir together the brown sugar, granola, raisins (if using), cinnamon, nutmeg, lemon zest and salt in a small bowl. Stuff each apple with the granola mixture, then place in a baking dish (any size that comfortably fits the apples is fine.) Top each apple with a few pieces of butter.
3. Pour the boiling water into the bottom of the baking dish. Bake, basting once or twice with juices from the dish, until the apples are tender but not mushy, 25-35 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool before serving.
**Note: McIntosh apples are relatively quick cooking. If you sub in a different baking apple, the baking time might be longer.
recipe by: Leah Koenig at forward.com