Apple Pickin’ Good Time

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photo-7When it comes to food and creating a great tasting dish, nothing makes the dish taste better than using the freshest of ingredients. Sure the ingredients you get at the store are fresh, but when I mean fresh, I mean straight from the farm or even going to the fields yourself and picking them.

That is exactly what I did last weekend when I took a trip to Oak Glen for apple picking. It could not have been a more perfect day; the weather was crisp and cool, I got to see family and friends, and the festivities were so much fun. We did everything from eating bbq and apple doughnuts to making our own cider and picking apples to take home.

I ended up picking 5 dozen Red Rome apples. Red Rome apples are said to be one of the best types of apples for cooking and they can be used in both sweet and savory dishes. Although I still have some apples left, I did use some earlier this week to make an Apple Strudel.DSCN5238

Now I made my strudel mid-week and did not have time to make the puff pastry from scratch, but if you really wanted to go through that process, it will give it that extra touch. I on the other hand decided to use store bought puff pastry this time to help expedite the process. I then used the follow recipe for the filling.

Apple Strudel

2-3 apples, chopped in ½ inch cubes (should be about two cups)
¾ tsp cinnamon
2 tablespoon white sugar
2 tablespoon flour
½ cup pecan pieces
3 tablespoon brown sugar
2 tablespoon white sugar
2 tablespoon bread crumbs
1 egg with 1 teaspoon water (beaten for brushing)
1 package of puff pastry (2 sheets); thawed to room temperature

Directions:

1). Preheat oven to 375 degrees
2). Peel, core, and chop apples. Place them in a bowl and add cinnamon, white sugar, and flour. Set aside for 20-30 minutes, so they can release the juices.
3). In a separate bowl combine nuts, sugars, and breadcrumbs. Set aside.
4). If the puff pastry does not already roll out to a rectangular sheet, roll out the sheet in a 10”x12”. Sprinkle ½ of the nut mixture on the pastry, covering halfway, and place ½ of the apples on top. Lift up the front side of the pastry, cover the apples, and start rolling all the way. Finish the other sheet the same way. Pinch the ends of each log and tuck under. Transfer to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, seam side down.
5). Brush the top with egg wash. Make a few slits on top for steam to escape. Bake at 375 for 40-45 minutes or until golden brown.

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If serving as dessert, serve warm with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream.

I ate mine as a nice breakfast pastry warm with a sprinkle of powdered sugar on top and nice cup of tea. I brought the rest to work with me and found that many of my coworkers did the same.

Apple picking is almost over but you can always get apples in the store. I hope you get a chance to try out this recipe and maybe next year you can make a trip up to Oak Glen and do some apple picking of your own.

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