Thursday, November 5, 2009

Apple pie filling and the Great Beef Experiment

If you live in Western New York, like I do, each fall you go into an apple picking, apple eating, apple buying frenzy. It is a sickness, really. New York is the second largest apple producer in the country and damn proud of it. So in the fall, people tend to go a little crazy, apples are cheap, and beautiful, and delicious. We went out to a local apple farm last weekend to go on a  haunted hayride through the orchard. See? I can be a nice mommy every now and then. Unfortunately, when we got there the orchard was too muddy for the hayride. How to make it up to the kids? Easy, buy them fresh pressed cider, donuts, and apples. Of course, we got a little carried away with the apples. And then a friend told me she had gotten carried away with the apples and she was bringing some my way. Before I could protest, I had nearly half a peck of apples. (How much is a peck, anyway? It's a lot of apples.) So I am making lots of apple recipes, quite a few of which I have written about before. I decided today that I had so many apples I needed to preserve some of them. I had already made apple butter and home canned apple sauce tastes like baby food. So what to do? I remembered that the same friend who gave me the apples likes to cook her apple pie filling before she puts it in the pie. She says you get more appley goodness. I have been a little skeptical, but I thought, well, I've got all these apples and if I make it, then I can freeze it. So I looked up a recipe. It looked a little gruesome to me. Why the need for so much water and cornstarch? It seemed like a miserly amount of cinnamon to me. No nutmeg. So, I revised. First, instead of water, I used apple cider. I had a lot! But I only used about 4 cups of apple cider instead of the ten cups of water it called for. I also had only had the patience to peel and cut 16 cups of apples, so I went with that. I added only about 1/3 cup of cornstarch, tripled the cinnamon, added a half a tsp of nutmeg, and reduced the sugar to three cups. Here is a picture:

Now, don't get me wrong, it tastes good. Really good. But it does taste a little like canned apple pie filling. And that is where I think the online recipe person went wrong. She was trying to be thrifty and use fewer good ingredients and more filler. Hence, a cup of cornstarch and 10 cups of water. She was making thickened apple flavored water for her pie. Mine has to be thicker than hers or at least have more apples. Therefore, I win. As usual. Should you try it? Probably only if you have so many apples they're coming out your rear. Otherwise, stick to normal apple pie. I'm going to have to ask my friend to make me an apple pie so that I can judge her recipe. Shhh, don't tell her I have a blog.

On a completely different note, MY COW CAME TODAY! I split a 1/4 of a cow with a friend. Grass fed, no antibiotics, no hormones, local beef. Will it be any good? Don't know yet. I'll let you know. So far, my research tells me you need to be sure not to overcook it. Sear it, lower the heat, cook until barely warm in the middle. If you like your meat anywhere past medium rare, you're a heathen. you don't deserve my fabulous beltie beef. Tonight, I am going to pan-sear a t-bone. I don't usually buy t-bones, but several arrived and so I shall cook them. Why don't I cook t-bones, you ask? Because they are just like Porterhouse, ONLY WITHOUT THE FILET. Here are some pics of my booty. I'll let you know how it tastes.



Anonymous said...

once again...NOOOOM T bones.....

but that is not why I stopped by.

*wiping slobber*

Could you please give your boy a hug from me and tell him thank you for his service?

I'd appreciate it.


The Mendon Foodie said...

You're the best. I'll kiss on him and hug him for you. And thanks for the great post on YOUR blog today.