Showing posts with label apple recipes. Show all posts
Showing posts with label apple recipes. Show all posts

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Summer Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette & Feta

I am so pleased to announce that Roberta Isleib (Lucy Burdette) and I (Daryl Wood Gerber aka Avery Aames) have been nominated for the Anthony Awards for our short stories. Whee!

The Anthony Awards are literary awards for mystery writers presented at the Bouchercon Mystery Convention since 1986. The award are named for Anthony Boucher (1911-1968) one of the founders of the Mystery Writers of America.

Click this title to read Roberta's "The Itinerary". You can catch my story, "Palace On The Lake" from FISH TALES: THE GUPPY ANTHOLOGY on my website.

Speaking of fish...

Oh, wait, no, I don't want to talk about fish today. I want to talk about's almost summer, right? [Can you tell I'm a little befuddled? I'm waiting for a baby to come from my nephew and his wife - my nephew is like a son to me! So sweet. On pins and needles.]

Anyway, back to summer. Summer should be simple, easy, and fun, don't you think? It's time to spend hours outside, drink in the sun, inhale the fabulous aromas of barbecue and ocean (lake) air.

Summer is also one of the best times to enjoy fresh vegetables and fruits. I love going to the local farmers' market and picking up tomatoes, lettuce, and all sorts of goodies.  One of the easiest things to do to liven up a salad is sprinkle it with cheese.  Feta offers a terrific tang to just about any salad. 
My husband loves to add Greek olives and red onions to his salad. In addition, I like to add artichoke hearts. Yum!  (Granted, I don't get the artichokes at the farmers' market. I'm all about efficiency sometimes. But don't cheap out on artichoke hearts. There is a difference in certain canned or jarred goods!)

Make your salad with your preferred ingredients.

DRIZZLE with balsamic vinaigrette and you're good to go.  Enjoy your greens. They're so good for you!


(Yields: one cup, approx.)


1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
3/4 cup olive oil
2 teaspoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black or white pepper, ground
1 teaspoon fresh or dried basil


Mix the vinegar, sugar, salt, pepper and basil in a blender.  Slowly add the olive oil so the mixture emulsifies.    [If you're not going to use the dressing right away or use all of it, cover and refrigerate. Shake well before using.]


* * *

If you don't figure it out yet, I, Avery Aames, am also

Daryl is what my husband actually calls me.

Here's how to learn more about Avery Aames or Daryl Wood Gerber.

Click this link to get to "our" website.

Chat with Avery on Facebook and Twitter.

Daryl will have a new series out in 2013:
featuring a cookbook store owner
who is an avid reader and admitted foodie!

"Like" Daryl's page on Facebook and "follow" Daryl on Twitter.
She doesn't say all the same things "Avery" does. Promise.

And if you haven't done so, sign up for the mailing list
 so you can learn about upcoming events, releases, and contests!

Say cheese!


Thursday, November 10, 2011


Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but let’s face it, sometimes food just doesn’t turn out pretty.

Bland colors on a bland plate? Sick. [Why don’t hospitals get this?]

Pasta with a white cream sauce served with white cauliflower as the vegetable? Ick.

White soup with white saltine crackers? Blech.
[And yet vanilla ice cream in a white bowl? Yum!  Beholder, remember? Beholder!]

Let’s face it, sometimes we simply have to close our eyes to eat. 

Today’s post is about inner beauty. [How I love to rationalize.]

I’ll admit I’m no cupcake maker. I think I’m starting to realize that cupcake batter should only fill half the cup (see my post for Halloween).

But it’s taken me years to get this basic point. And it only took me a couple of weeks to forget it. Perhaps I’ll write in on a Post-it note and put it on my baking cabinet…or better yet, stow it in the cupcake tin itself!  {Lightbulb!!}

Anyway, I made some gluten-free muffins and I forgot the tenet above and over-poured the batter. Minutes later, out came these muffins. They’re flat-out ugly with elephantine bumps. Frosting can cover a lot of ugliness, but I wasn’t adding frosting this time. {Though a cream cheese frosting might be tasty.}

Given time constraints of travel and not having time to make a whole new batch, I closed my eyes and took a bite. It turns out they’re yummy, moist, and full of flavor.

Just don’t look at them.

What do you like to eat that’s flat-out ugly?



(makes 8)

1 ¼ cup gluten-free baking mix (I used Pamela's see note below)
¼ cup water
¼ cup brown sugar
¼ cup chopped cheese (Dry Jack & Cheddar)
½ cup parboiled apple slices (recipe below)
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla


Heat oven to 350 degrees.

In medium bowl, mix all ingredients. [Note, you can use any GF baking mix. Pamela’s, GF Bisquick, Bob’s Red Mill…] 

Using a ladle, spoon mixture into 8 greased muffin pans or paper muffin cups (to ½ to 2/3 full).  Bake approximately 18-20 minutes.

Parboiled Apples
*To make parboiled apples: Peel 2 apples, your choice. Dice into small bites. Heat ½ cup water to boil. Add apple slices. Boil 10 minutes. Drain.

** When adding apple slices to the recipe above, do not include the “sweet apple” water left over.

Extra recipe:

Parboiled "Applesauce"
Make as above. DO NOT DRAIN. Add 1 teaspoon cinnamon. Eat just like it is or... * I added the "applesauce" to my latest banana bread in place of one of the bananas. PERFECT.  [Forgot to take pictures of this. Think chunky applesauce.]

* * *

You can learn more about Avery by clicking this link.

Chat with Avery on Facebook and Twitter.

And watch for CLOBBERED BY CAMEMBERT, coming out February 2012.

* * * * * * * *

Sunday, November 6, 2011

How Food Has Changed

by Sheila Connolly

Having failed to procure a guest for this day (and it's a long one, thanks to Daylight Savings), I thought I would regale you with some recipes from The Williamsburg Art of Cookery; or, Accomplished Gentlewoman's Companion, by Mrs. Helen Bullock.  The authors themselves cited many earlier sources.  The copy I have was purchased at Williamsburg by my grandmother in June 1951.  Her late husband, my grandfather, had attended William & Mary (although he didn't graduate), and she first visited the place with him, in 1936.

"The Apple Bee," by Winslow Homer

I love reading old cookbooks, and trying to puzzle out what some of the unfamiliar ingredients are--like isinglass, which is included in a recipe for blanc mange (which I know of only through Little Women).  There are intriguing recipes that have fallen out of favor,  like celery vinegar, or "apoquiniminics," which appear to be some kind of flat biscuit, or squab pie (if you're having trouble finding squabs, the writers says you can substitute robins).  And of course I'm always on the hunt for apple recipes. The book has a nice selection.

Apple Pudding (before 1839)

Half a Pound of Apples boiled, and squeezed through a hair Sieve half a Pound of Butter--beaten to a Cream, and mixed with the Apples before they are cold, six Eggs well beaten, half a Pound of fine Sugar--the Rind of two Lemons--or Oranges--boiled well shifting the water several Times--then beat all togather--bake them on a Crust.  Half an Hour will bake it.

Um, I have no idea what this is supposed to come out like. It's not clear if you're supposed to cream the apples or the butter, and what on earth is being boiled?

This next one sounds a bit more manageable:

To make an Apple Tansy (1742)

Take three Pippins, slice them round in thin slices, and fry them with Butter; then beat four Eggs, with six Spoonfuls of Cream, a little Rose-water, Nutmeg and Sugar, and stir them together, and pour it over the Apples; Let it fry a little, and turn in with a Pye-plate.  Garnish with Lemon and Sugar strewed over it.

I won't trouble you with the Pupton of Apples (I have no idea what a Pupton was), although at some point you're supposed to pour the mixture into a silver dish and bake it in a slow oven, then serve it with a plate of sliced butter on the side as well as fresh parsley. 

Most people would recognize the Apple Pie recipe, although there is an interesting twist:  you're supposed to boil the apple peels and cores in water with "a Blade of Mace," then strain it, add sugar, and boil it down to make a syrup ro pour over the apples in your pie before you add the top crust.  I can't say I've ever tried mace in a pie.

A good portion of the cookbook is devoted to breads and pastries, and it ends up with a section called "Of Health Drinking," which includes recipes for such delightful concoctions as Arrack Punch, Caudle, Morello Cherry Bounce, Custard Posset, Negus, Panada, and Orgeat (labeled "A Necessary Refreshment at all Parties").  It sounds like the good people of old Williamsburg knew how to party.  But lest they get to carried away, the section is preceded by the following page, "A Moral and Physical Thermometer," from The Gentlemen's Magazine in 1739.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Grammy's Apple Kuchen

As I've mentioned before, I love going through
my grandmother's old recipe box. Especially
during the holidays. Seeing her handwriting or
the notes she made on recipe cards now yellowed
with age brings her back to me more than a
photograph in an album ever could.

I have no idea if it is accurate or not, but I tend to pick
the recipe cards that have the most stains on them. My
guess is that they were used quite a bit so they must be good,

So here is my grandmother's Apple Kuchen:

3 tablespoons sugar
1 cup flour
2 tspns baking powder
2 apples (peeled and sliced)
pinch of salt
1 egg
4 tablespoons milk
2 tablespoons shortening (melted)
1 teaspoon vanilla
sugar and cinnamon to taste

Sift flour-baking powder-salt-sugar. Put melted shortening
in a bowl - add milk - vanilla - beaten egg - then sifted ingredients.
Mix thoroughly. Spread into 8 " pan. Arrange apples slices on top.
Sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon. Bake 15 minutes in 350
degree oven.

This is a light fluffy biscuit like cake with a crunchy outside and
warm cinnamon apples on top. I plan to make this instead of
coffee cake for breakfast Christmas morning. It'll be like having
Gram with me.

*I believe this was a war time recipe when rationing factored into
ingredient selection. Although, it came out fine the way it was written,
I am a butter lover so the next time I make it, I am going to
substitute a 1/2 cup of softened butter in place of the melted
shortening and milk. I'll let you know how it turns out.

Happy Holidays! Jenn

Jenn McKinlay

March 2010
(Available for Pre-Order Now)

aka Lucy Lawrence
Sept 2009 (Available Now)


April 2010
(Available for Pre-Order Now)

Keep those suggestions for our Iron Chef inspired cooking week coming. I love a challenge! And I heard a rumor you can win something with chocolate.
Seriously, chocolate!!!