Now that Noah is in school, Mateo and I have more time to play in the kitchen. We’ve made apple butter, oatmeal cinnamon muffins, homemade meusli, and a slew of other seasonal baking.
A recent apple picking outing provided us with several bushels of fresh apples, and while we’re munching them daily raw (sliced, with aged cheddar, thank you) we’ve discovered that baking them for the evening’s dessert is another delicious way to enjoy them.
Maple Pecan Baked Apples is a perfect recipe for inviting children to pull up a chair and make along with you. They can mix the filling while you core the apples, then let them stuff the apples (and sample a bit of everything), and into the oven they go (the apples, not the kids).
One-on-one time in the kitchen always leads to interesting conversations. This time Mateo (3) initiated:
Mateo: “Mommy, we’re not ever going to sell the baby are we?” (meaning his future sibling I’m currently pregnant with)
Me. “WHAT? NO! (sternly) Mateo, if a stranger offered you candy in exchange for our baby, what would you say?”
Mateo: (thinking, then:) “Thank you.”
Sigh. Where does he come up with this stuff? Please note that we have since assured him that the baby will never be ‘for sale’. Gracious!
A Snapshot of Apple Varieties and Their Uses
If I had a quarter for every conversation about appropriate apples for the job…well you get my point. Have you ever noticed an apple pie filling resembling applesauce instead of the soft individual apple pieces that it should contain under that flaky crust? That’s a perfect example of having selected the wrong variety of apple for the job.
There are dozens (hundreds, even) of apple varieties and each have their unique job description. Here are just a few of them: