a tale of apple dumplings

Remember my fabulous visit to the orchard last month? I brought many apples home with me. Both Cortland and Haralson, two of my favorites. This week I decided to do cook something new [for me] and made apple dumplings. In the past I have always talked myself out of making these for some reason and certainly I had issues. But if you are looking for something low sugar, scrumptious, rich and seasonal they will be perfect.

The first issue was my pastry. The last two times I made pastry it was oddly wet, so determined to not have it be too wet, yep you guessed it, it was very dry and crumbly. I basically had to mold the dough all around the apple. I think that this is the reason why the cooked apples expanded through the crust in a very fluffy fashion. Although as soon as they were removed from the oven the apple sank back in a very disarming way.

I indulged myself by making a larded WW flour, pie crust as my pastry, but these work with any type of pastry. Make your favorite and don't tell me if it's pre made or made with shortening, we all have our illusions we try to maintain.

All taste testers said they were yummy, which I guess is the most important part. Perhaps I'll do bird's nest pudding next time and not have any pastry worries.

EB's Apple Dumplings

-4 peeled, cored apples
-1/8 c of palm sugar [perhaps more to taste]
-1/2 c softened butter [you may not use it all]
-1/2 c agave nectar
-1/2 c water
cinnamon and nutmeg

-Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

-Heat the agave nectar, water, dash of cinnamon and 2T of butter to a simmer for 2 minutes.
-Remove syrup from heat.

-Roll out pastry into a circle big enough to fold up and cover the apple
-Place apple upright in the center of the pastry
-Place a small spoonful of butter and a spoonful of palm sugar into the center of your apple.
-Sprinkle apple with cinnamon and nutmeg.
-Lift edges of pastry and cover your apple, use water as needed to make pastry seal
-Place in an oven safe dish and brush dumpling with the syrup.
-Make the other dumplings in the same manner.
-Bake 10 minutes then brush all dumplings with syrup again.
-Turn down oven to 325 degrees and keep baking dumplings.
-Every 10 minutes brush dumplings with syrup

-Remove from oven after 30 minutes of baking at 325 degrees.

-Serve with heavy cream, whipped cream, creme fraiche, ice cream [maybe cinnamon]
-Make a tasty breakfast the next morning, you know I saved one for that.

Enjoy even if they burst.


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