I had been dreaming of baked apple for days when I saw this recipe on The Wednesday Chef this week. I was so excited to try a new recipe for my favorite food that I would have run out to get the ingredients that very minute if it hadn't been 1am. I held off until Wednesday evening (funny coincidence) and made them for dessert. I followed the recipe as closely as I could, but since I don't have a melon-baller I cut out the cores all the way through to the other side then inserted pieces of apple into the bottom to act as plugs, and I didn't add cardamon pods (at $9.99 a jar I just couldn't justify the expense). The prep was pretty easy, but basting the apples every five minutes was a little time-consuming and had me jumping up from my work constantly. It wasn't a big deal since I was just checking email and watching Martha's Apprentice, but I usually like to make baked apples for breakfast, and basting every five minutes would not fit with my morning schedule.
The apples themselves, once the basting was done, were great - soft and warm and comforting. The maple syrup added a nice twist, putting me in mind of fall hikes through Vermont, and the wine cut the sweetness and added a little sophistication, making them an adult treat. The golden raisins were much better than the black ones I usually use, but I wasn't as thrilled with the pecans, which I thought were kind of bitter compared to the almonds I usually use. Josh, on the other hand, liked the pecans because of their richness. I added a tablespoon of cream to the mix, which I usually do to cut the sweetness, but Josh ate them plain. We each one, and as soon as we were done we wanted to follow them up the remaining two, but we held off so that we could reheat them the next morning for breakfast.
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