Long about this time of year, when the days start to get shorter and the nights start drawing in . . . and the air is filled with the smell of ripe apples and falling leaves, my heart starts to covet the comforts of home and simple things . . .
Things like warm sweaters and rubber wellies . . .
Sloes and hips and berries . . .
Long walks across the fields . . . with fallen acorns crunching underfoot, and Jess, our much beloved Border Collie, leading the way . . .
Purple sunsets, with a harvest moon hung low in the sky . . .
Bonfires and toasted fingers . . .
Baked apples . . . and cream . . .
*Stuffed Baked Apples*
This is the perfect autumn dessert. Impressive, tasty and oh so very easy to do.
6 Granny Smith Apples
2/3 cup cup of flaked toasted almonds
2 TBS soft light brown sugar, packed
2 TBS plain flour
1 ounce of softened butter
pinch of cinnamon
6 cinnamon sticks
Pre-heat the oven to 160*C/325*F. Lightly grease a shallow baking dish large enough to hold all the apples. Set aside.
Using a sharp knife cut out the stem end of the apple. Take a melon baller and hollow out the inside a bit, removing the seeds and core and making a small pocket without going all the way through to the bottom. Make a light score all the way around the apples, horizontally. Place the apples in the baking dish.
Combine the almonds, flour, sugar, butter and cinnamon together in a small bowl. Divide this mixture equally amongst the apples, stuffing it down inside. Stick a cinnamon stick into the centre of each. Bake for 25 minutes or so, until the apples are as soft as you would like them to be for eating. Serve warm with custard or spooning cream. Delicious!