Apple Dumpling Day

September 17, we celebrate Apple Dumpling Day. Though dumplings were originally filled with meat to make an inexpensive meal, people began experimenting with them using fruit. Some of the fruit they put inside them were pears and plums. When people came to the U.S. from northern Europe, they brought their recipes with them, but at first didn’t have access to the fruit they were used to using. So it was in the States that specifically apple dumplings were born. The recipe is often found in Amish cookbooks.

Originally, apple dumplings were boiled and steamed, and the word itself comes from German dampf, meaning steam. Now it is typically baked using Granny Smith or other cooking apples, previously cored and peeled. The crucial spice is cinnamon.

Dumplings are sometimes thought of as little personal apple pies, but at least in traditional recipes, there is a difference. The dough is slightly different, and there is a sauce added to the dumplings as they bake. For a recipe that takes some time, but looks definitely worth it, look on the King Arthur Flour site. The sauce is made by simmering the apple peelings with brown sugar. It can be finished off with a scoop of ice cream on the warm dumpling.

Apple dumplings may be served for either breakfast or dessert. In the U.K., a suet pastry is often used, although shortcrust is also common. (Shortcrust pastry is based on a “half-fat-to-flour” ratio that is, twice as much flour as fat by weight. The fat may be butter, lard, or shortening.).A filling of dates, sultanas, or raisins is often inserted into the cavity left by removal of the core.

So do celebrate today by making or buying apple dumplings, and make this a delicious day.

Quotes about apples

Coleridge holds that a man cannot have a pure mind who refuse apple-dumplings. I am not certain but that he is right.–Charles Lamb

I know the look of an apple that is roasting and sizzling on the hearth on a winter’s evening, and I know the comfort that comes of eating it hot, along with some sugar and a drench of cream… I know how the nuts taken in conjunction with winter apples, cider, and doughnuts, make old people’s tales and old jokes sound fresh and crisp and enchanting.–Mark Twain

You cannot sell a blemished apple in the supermarket, but you can sell a tasteless one provided it is shiny, smooth, even, uniform and bright.–Elspeth Huxley

If you want to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first create the universe.–Carl Sagan

Why not upset the apple cart? If you don’t the apples will rot anyway.–Frank A. Clark

Anyone can count the seeds in an apple, but only God can count the number of apples in a seed.–Robert H. Schuller

Even if I knew that tomorrow the world would go to pieces, I would still plant my apple tree.–Martin Luther

When the apple is ripe it will fall.–Irish proverb

Almost all wild apples are handsome. They cannot be too gnarly and crabbed and rusty to look at. The gnarliest will have some redeeming traits even to the eye.–Henry David Thoreau

Why do we need so many kinds of apples? Because there are so many folks. A person has a right to gratify his legitimate taste. If he wants twenty or forty kinds of apples for his personal use…he should be accorded the privilege. There is merit in variety itself. It provides more contact with life, and leads away from uniformity and monotony.–Liberty Hyde Baily

I’m not smart, but I like to observe. Millions saw the apple fall, but Newton was the one who asked why.–William Hazlitt

With an apple I will astonish Paris.–Paul Cezanne

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National Apple Turnover Day

On July 5, we celebrate apple turnovers. At their most basic, turnovers are pies you can hold in your hand. They are made by putting filling on dough, folding it over, sealing it, crimping it with a fork, and baking. Yum! By the way, did you know the only apple native to North America is the crab apple? Now you do!

You can make turnovers with regular pie dough or as it probably more usual, on puff pastry. I found recopies for many kinds of apple turnovers on the Web.

Here is a nicely basic on using puff pastry from AnydayGuide:

Peel and core 1 large apple, cut it into 1/4-inch dice. In a bowl, stir together apple chunks, 3 tbs dried cranberries, 3 tbs heated apple jelly, 1 tbs cornstarch, and 1/8 tsp cinnamon.

On a lightly floured surface, roll out puff pastry and cut into 6 parts. You need roughly 4-inch squares. Divide the apple filling among pastry squares, leaving a 1-inch border. Brush border with lightly beaten egg. Cut 2 tbs cold unsalted butter into bits and dot filling with it.

Fold each square into a triangle and crimp edges, using a fork. Cut a couple of slits in top of each turnover. Brush lightly with egg and sprinkle with sugar. Bake at 400 °F until puffed and golden. Let cool to warm and enjoy.

There are links to different recipes at cdkitchen. Here are a couple. You can find the full recipe for those and others on the Website.

Loretta Lynn’s Apple Turnovers
Made with confectioners’ sugar, apple pie filling, all-purpose flour, sugar, salt, cinnamon, shortening, water

Apple Cinnamon Turnovers in Sour Cream Pastry
Made with cinnamon, brown sugar, flour, butter, sour cream, water, salt, apples

So whatever you do, enjoy an apple turnover today!

Quotes about apples.

I know the look of an apple that is roasting and sizzling on the hearth on a winter’s evening, and I know the comfort that comes of eating it hot, along with some sugar and a drench of cream… I know how the nuts taken in conjunction with winter apples, cider, and doughnuts, make old people’s tales and old jokes sound fresh and crisp and enchanting.–Mark Twain

You cannot sell a blemished apple in the supermarket, but you can sell a tasteless one provided it is shiny, smooth, even, uniform and bright.–Elspeth Huxley

If you want to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first create the universe.–Carl Sagan

Why not upset the apple cart? If you don’t the apples will rot anyway.–Frank A. Clark

Anyone can count the seeds in an apple, but only God can count the number of apples in a seed.–Robert H. Schuller

Even if I knew that tomorrow the world would go to pieces, I would still plant my apple tree.–Martin Luther

When the apple is ripe it will fall.–Irish proverb

Almost all wild apples are handsome. They cannot be too gnarly and crabbed and rusty to look at. The gnarliest will have some redeeming traits even to the eye.–Henry David Thoreau

Why do we need so many kinds of apples? Because there are so many folks. A person has a right to gratify his legitimate taste. If he wants twenty or forty kinds of apples for his personal use…he should be accorded the privilege. There is merit in variety itself. It provides more contact with life, and leads away from uniformity and monotony.–Liberty Hyde Baily

I’m not smart, but I like to observe. Millions saw the apple fall, but Newton was the one who asked why.–William Hazlitt

With an apple I will astonish Paris.–Paul Cezanne

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National Apple Month

October is National Apple Month. The celebration began in 1904 as National Apple Week, and now is celebrated during the entire month.

Apples have been cultivated for food a long time. Some say it was the Romans who first began it, others that the apple’s origins were rooted in Southwestern Asia, just south of the Caucasus Mountains between the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea. But whether it was, they have been around for a long time.

At least since Medieval times, apples have been known for their health properties, hence the saying “an apple a day keeps the doctor away.” In case you are interested, the original old English saying went like this: “Ate an apfel avore gwain to bed Makes the doctor beg his bread.”

Of course, apples are used in any number of recipes. “As American as apple pie,” is a familiar saying and comes from the fact that the Pilgrims brought both apple seeds and their recipes with them when they came to the new world.

Apples come in all shades of red, green, and yellow. There are 2500 varieties of apples grown in the U. S., only about a hundred are grown commercially. Everybody has their favorites. My favorite when I was growing up was Macintosh, but they are not commercially grown in the Pacific Northwest, where most prefer red or green Delicious. My current favorite is Honey Crisp, but I settle for Jonagold because the Honey Crisp are twice as expensive as the other brands. And I cook with Granny Smith. As a diabetic, I also do a lot of substituting of applesauce for sugar in recipes.

So let us celebrate apples during their special month!

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Quotes about apples

Autumn seemed to arrive suddenly that year. The morning of the first September was crisp and golden as an apple.–J. K. Rowling

When bobbing for apples, an idealist endlessly reaches for the best apple, a pessimist settles for the first one within reach, while an optimist drains the barrel, fishes out all the apples and makes pie.–Vera Nazarian

Surely the apple is the noblest of fruits.–Henry David Thoreau

It’s unsettling to meet people who don’t eat apples.–Aimee Bender

Get rid of the idea that everyone has to like you! Even if you were the most delicious apple on earth, get real, some people prefer bananas!–Richard Spinos

Every thought is a seed. If you plant crab apples, don’t count on harvesting Golden Delicious.–Bill Meyer

It is remarkable how closely the history of the apple tree is connected with that of man.–Henry David Thoreau

Anyone can count the seeds in an apple, but only God can count the number of apples in a seed.–Robert H. Schuller

Why not upset the apple cart? If you don’t, the apples will rot anyway.–Frank A. Clark

The flowers of the apple are perhaps the most beautiful of any tree’s, so copious and so delicious to both sight and scent.–Henry David Thoreau

If you want to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first create the universe.–Carl Sagan

Millions saw the apple fall, but Newton was the one who asked why.–Bernard M. Baruch

Even if I knew that tomorrow the world would go to pieces, I would still plant my apple tree.–Martin Luther

Good apple pies are a considerable part of our domestic happiness.–Jane Austen

Almost all wild apples are handsome. They cannot be too gnarly and crabbed and rusty to look at. The gnarliest will have some redeeming traits even to the eye.–Henry David Thoreau

Ever since Eve started it all by offering Adam the apple, woman’s punishment has been to supply a man with food then suffer the consequences when it disagrees with him.–Helen Rowland

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