A Bushel of Apples

1 Sep

Another of my garden’s bounties this year: apples. I don’t know what kind of apple trees they are; they were in the yard when I bought the house. One is pinkish-red-green and sweeter and goes soft really quickly, and the other is green and more tart. They both make good pies.

Every year I get my niece and nephew to come over and shake the apples off the trees. They wear ice cream buckets for helmets and then fill the buckets. Effective and efficient.

Then I get together with whichever of my lovely girlfriends are available and willing to attend my Somewhat Regular Apple Pie Social. We sit on the deck, peel apples, eat nibblies, drink iced tea, chat and sometimes get around to making pies.

Leslie was The Good One this year. She made her own pie crust, brought it to the party, went home to bake it, and sent me a photo of her beautiful pie.

I baked a pie too, but I used frozen pie crust. I know I should make my own pie crust; my Mom would probably want me to make my own pie crust. But I cut pretty leaf-shaped holes in it. That should count for something.

Pat baked a pie when she got home but forgot to take a photo til after.

Karen baked an apple and blueberry crisp at home, but I forgot to ask her to photograph it, so she gets the A for Apple Pie page from Kate Greenaway’s beautifully illustrated classic.

I also make applesauce with my abundance of apples, which is way easier now that I have my Vitamix.  I just core the apples and put them into the Vitamix skin and all. I find it easiest to do about three at a time with a bit of lemon juice, cinnamon and honey. Crab Crackin’ Carly – take note. This is a great use of your new Vitamix. Just be prepared to ram those apples in there with the tamper. Don’t be timid – the Vitamix can take it. It only takes about 10 seconds and presto – fresh and delicious raw applesauce (better for you than cooked). The applesauce is browner than store-bought because of the skins, and probably because it is chemical-free.

This is also the time of year that big honkin’orphan zucchini are foisted upon unsuspecting friends. Desperate gardeners who are overwhelmed by zucchini leave them on doorsteps in the middle of the night and then run like mad. My friend Gordon received one such gift when I was visiting him at his lake cottage. Since he was leaving for a vacation, I offered to make it into soup and freeze some for him. And yes, there is an apple connection.

I’m afraid that I don’t have an exact recipe for the Big Honkin’ Zucchini Soup, since I kept adding things until it tasted right. But basically, I roasted the zucchini with the skin on, and sautéed some onion, garlic and fresh ginger root along with cumin, coriander, turmeric and cayenne. Then I Vitamixed everything like crazy, including the skin of the zucchini. The zucchini skin adds some nice green flecks, and they are good for you. I added chicken broth until I liked the consistency. If you leave the Vitamix going long enough, it will cook the soup through the friction of the blades – pretty cool. It still seemed to be missing something, so I added some applesauce and cream cheese. It turned out really well and was a hit with The-Man-With-Whom-I-Keep-Company. I don’t know if I will be able to replicate it though. That tends to happen when something turns out especially well.

As for Just Adding Wine, I think that a nice crisp apple cider would be an excellent accompaniment.

Posted by Truly Scrumptious.


3 Responses to “A Bushel of Apples”

  1. The Erratic Cook September 2, 2012 at 9:29 am #

    Yum!! The pies look amazing! The helmet head niece and nephew come back every year to get the apples, so they must enjoy the bounty, I’d wear a bucket on my head for some pie! I can relate to the not taking the picture until it’s all gone, that happens around here a lot! The soup sounds delicious, I must try.

  2. Adrian Brown September 2, 2012 at 9:38 am #

    Bucket Head is also quite the guitarist for gun and Roses……….not sure about his pie making abilities ……..I am sure he would like his a la mode………he is pretty cool.

  3. cradics September 2, 2012 at 10:08 pm #

    Haha, the buckets are awesome! Love it!

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