I love it when all those wonderful apples begin appearing this time of year in area markets. They are a healthy part of the 5-A-Day plan for fruits and vegetables. Here are some tips on how to include them in your family meals.
Which One To Pick? That depends on what you are going to do with the apple and your taste. If you are just going to enjoy eating a fresh sweet apple you might choose Fuji, Gala, Honey Gold or the classic Red Delicious.
For baking or pies with a sweet tart flavor choose Braeburn, Empire, or Jonagold. For baking or pies where a tart taste is preferred choose Rome or Granny Smith. Now that you know what apple to choose here are some delicious recipes containing apples.
Baked Apples and Pork Chops
1 medium unpeeled cooking apple, sliced
2 T. packed brown sugar
1/4 t. ground cinnamon
2 pork rib chops, 1/2-3/4 inch thick (about 4 oz. each)
Heat oven to 350. Place apples in 1 1/2 qt. casserole. Sprinkle with brown sugar and cinnamon. Remove fat from pork. Spray a nonstick skillet with cooking spray; heat over medium heat for 1-2 minutes. Cook about 5 minutes, turning once, until light brown. Place pork on top of apples. Cover and bake about 45 minutes until pork is done and apples tender. Be careful not to overcook as it will make the pork tough.
Baked Apple Oatmeal
2 2/3 c. old-fashioned oats
1/2 c. raisins
4 c. milk
1/3 c. brown sugar
2 T. margarine, melted
1 t. ground cinnamon
1/4 t. salt
2 medium apples, chopped (2 cups)
1/2 c. chopped walnuts, if desired
Heat oven to 350. In a 2 qt. casserole, mix all ingredients except walnuts. Bake uncovered 40 - 45 minutes or until most liquid is absorbed. Top with walnuts. It may be served with additional milk, yogurt, cream, brown sugar. This recipe also may be made with pears.
Baked Apples with Granola
2 large crisp apples
2 T. raisins or sweetened dried cranberries
2 T. brown sugar
4 t. margarine, softened
4 crunchy granola bars, crushed
Cut apples in half lengthwise. Using spoon, remove and discard the cores, making at least a 1 inch hole in each apple half. On a microwavable pie plate, arrange apple halves, cut side up. If needed, slice off a small piece of the bottoms to keep them from tipping. Fill each apple half evenly with the raisins and brown sugar. Dot with margarine. Cover with microwavable plastic wrap, folding back one edge to vent steam. Microwave on High 5 - 6 minutes or until apples are tender. Top with granola. Enjoy this warm apple treat with a cold glass of milk.