Tis the season for fragrant apple desserts fresh out of the oven. I love a good apple crisp with vanilla ice cream, or a warm apple cake with caramel icing. For breakfast, I’ll grate some apple into the pancake batter and add a little cinnamon. Yum!
I have two trees that alternate producing apples. This year is a banner year. I have four grocery bags full of apples. There’s no time to can applesauce, thanks to book deadlines, so I’m looking for other ways to use apples.
My grandmother’s old (early 1920s) cookbook has an apple confection recipe, called Apple Allies. As is typical of old cookbooks, the instructions are vague. From what I can figure out, you bring a two-to-one mixture of sugar to water to a boil and then add pared apple slices. Cook until they are soft enough that they are transparent and can be pierced with a straw. Then remove, drain, and dry for a day. Roll in regular granulated sugar and serve.
Naturally I had to give this a try. Here I am attempting the straw test. It didn’t work, probably because straws back then were made of glued paper that was then waxed and were very small in diameter. So I went with transparency as a measure.
Here’s the finished product. How do they taste? Like apples with sugar. Since I chose a tart apple, there's a tart-sweet flavor. But what do I do with the syrup that's left? It's the consistency of corn syrup and has an apple flavor. Any ideas?
I don’t recall my grandma ever making these. Nor do I recall eating candy made from apples–other than caramel apples, of course.
Does your family have any traditional apple recipes? Any current favorites? Please share!
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