The fall is by far our favorite time of year. Jeans and sweatshirts, football, and of course apples.
This year we AGAIN missed the honeycrisp apples at the farm. But we did get there in time to pick over 20 pounds of gala apples, which are super sweet and apparently the second most popular apple in the US behind red delicious.
So what’s a family to do with all those apples? Apple crisp is always a favorite in our house, since I don’t do pies. Our all-time favorite crisp is actually the Apple Pear Crisp in the Scotto Sunday Suppers and Other Fabulous Feasts: Creative Entertaining for Every Occasion.
Apple butter is also always on the top of our list. We fill the crock pit to the stop with peeled and roughly chopped apples and then coat them with a mixture of brown sugar, granulated sugar, cinnamon, freshly grated nutmeg, and ground cloves. We let it cook on low for about 8 hours before we take the emulsion blender to it. At that point we leave the lid off and turn it to high for about 2 hours, stirring it occasionally. When it reaches a thick consistency and sticks to the back of a spoon, we turn the crock pot off and let it cool completely before storing it. We use apple butter on pancakes and spoon a dollop into yogurt with some granola.
Every year I tell myself I need to figure out what to do with all the apple peels and every year I simply toss them. (I can hear your collective gasp!) So this year I was determined not to waste them. I shredded some in the food processor and stored them in the freezer to use in muffins. I decided to make apple chips with the rest.
And with so many apple chips, it seemed only logical that we should try some in biscotti! These Apple Crisp Biscotti have everything we love in our fruit crisps, minus the stick of butter.
apple peels from about 25 apples
½ cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1. Preheat oven to 250 degrees and line a pan with parchment paper.
2. Mix sugar and cinnamon together in a medium bowl. Add the apple peels and toss well.
3. Spread a single layer onto the parchment lined pan and bake for 2 ½ hours, stirring occasionally.
4. Let cool completely before storing.
Apple Crisp Biscotti
YIELD: approximately two dozen
2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon double-acting baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 ½ tablespoons cinnamon
1 egg and 3 egg whites (keep the yolks to brush on the logs)
1 tablespoon almond extract
½ cup apple chips, crushed
1/4 cup brown sugar
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and place the rack in the middle of the oven.
2. In a large flat-bottomed bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon.
3. In a smaller bowl, whisk together the eggs, egg whites, and almond extract.
4. With a rubber spatula, stir the egg mixture into the flour mixture until the dough just starts to come together. Dust your hands with flour and knead the dough in the bowl until all the ingredients are incorporated and the dough is tacky.
5. Add the crushed apple chips. Knead the dough until incorporated, about 10 – 20 times.
6. Separate the dough in half. Form two logs, approximately 3 inches wide and 1 inch high on a parchment lined baking sheet. Leave several inches between the logs, the dough will spread as it bakes.
7. Whisk the remaining three egg yolks and liberally brush the top of each log. Press brown sugar onto the top of the logs.
8. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 30 minutes, or until the tops begin to crack or split. Transfer logs to a wire cooling rack to cool completely.
9. Transfer biscotti logs to a cutting board. Slice the biscotti on a diagonal and place cut side down on the same parchment lined baking sheet. Bake for an additional 20 minutes, turning the biscotti once halfway through. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely.
What to do with the ends #85: Use the ends to scrap the thick, gooey, sticky, almost crusty, apple butter from the sides of the crock pot when you make your next batch of apple butter.