Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Apple Dumplings Recipe

Yesterday my 13 year old daughter took advantage of her day off from school by baking Apple Dumplings.  Although they are in my husband's top ten desserts list and my mother made them quite often when I was living at home, I have never attempted to make Apple Dumplings.  The reason for this travesty is that along with my fear of yeast dough, I have a fear of pastry dough.  Interestingly enough, on Sunday I decided to face that fear and I made my first from-scratch pie dough which was easier than I had imagined and quite tasty as the crust for my pumpkin pie.  Because I have very little experience in the pastry dough department, Apple Dumplings was a good choice for my daughter because it minimized my opportunities to micro-manage her cooking.

After independently consulting the red plaid Better Homes and Gardens circa 1989 cookbook that I received as a wedding gift, my daughter began to gather her ingredients and read through the entire recipe out loud.  She dismissed my suggestion for using my new Williams Sonoma pastry blender and instead opted to use the food processor (another thing on my culinary fears-I-am-attempting-to-face list).  She peeled, cored, processed, and simmered her ingredients until she had created an amazingly beautiful dish of Apple Dumplings.  I was very proud of her adventurous and independent cooking spirit and I was also proud of myself because my daughter only had to say, "Mom, please don't freak out!" once while cooking.

The baking apples made our freshly cleaned and decorated-for-Fall home smell heavenly.  It was so comforting to see the cute dumplings with their fall leaf embellishments perched on our kitchen island waiting for dessert.  My daughter texted her dad, who she has recently taken to calling Padre (thank you Spanish I), to bring home some Blue Bell vanilla ice cream and then after dinner she cheerfully served our family a delicious, homemade seasonal treat.  Maybe the teens years aren't going to be so bad after all:)

Apple Dumplings Recipe

1 1/4 cups sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 Tablespoons butter
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2/3 cups shortening
6 small apples

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. For syrup, mix 1 cup sugar, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/4 teasopoon nutmeg, and 1 3/4 cups water.  Bring to boiling; reduce heat.  Simmer 5 minutes.  Remove from heat; stir in butter.
  3. For pastry, mix flour and 1/4 teaspoon salt.  Cut in shortening till coarse crumbs form.  Add 6 to 8 tablespoons cold water, a little at a time, mixing just until dough is moistened.  Form into a ball and wrap in plastic wrap.  Chill for about 1 hour.
  4. Roll chilled dough into an 18x12 inch rectangle; use a pizza cutter to cut into six 6-inch squares.
  5. Peel and core apples.  Place one apple on the center of each pastry square.
  6. Combine remaining sugar (1/2 cup), cinnamon (1/4 teaspoon), and nutmeg (1/4 teaspoon).  Sprinkle over fruit.
  7. Moisten edges of pastry; sit one apple on each square of dough; fold corners up to cover fruit.  Pinch to seal. If desired, use leftover dough to create leaf shapes to decorate dumplings.
  8. Place pastry covered apples in a large baking dish.  Pour syrup over apples.
  9. Bake apples at 375 degrees for about 45 minutes or until fruit is tender and pastry is golden brown.
  10. Serve with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream.
Inspired from recipe in Better Homes and Gardens New Cook Book (copyright 1989)

1 comment:

  1. I am glad to find someone with the same fear that I have. I love cooking and experimenting with different foods. I would like to make different kinds o breads, but my fear of yeast, dough, and wet bread keeps me far away. Although I don't have that problem when making pie dough, as long as it doesn't include yeast. Your Apple Dumplings look delicious. I can't wait to try making them. :-)