A Long December

Sunday, December 6, 2015
"I can't remember all the times I tried to tell myself
To hold on to these moments as they pass.
And it's one more day up in the canyon
And it's one more night in Hollywood
It's been so long since I've seen the ocean .. I guess I should."

- from "A Long December" by the Counting Crows

I love this song by the Counting Crows, but this December doesn't seem particularly long - like most Decembers, it will likely pass in a heartbeat. I'd love to know how I can slow the passage of the next few weeks so I have time to enjoy everything I love about the month.

I haven't figured out how to slow time down, but it felt like I did when I prepared these slow-cooker baked apples. They're the best baked apples I've ever eaten. I think it was the low heat and the long baking time that cooked them to a tender perfection - and lent my kitchen a wonderful spicy aroma in the process. The first time I made them, I skipped the step about peeling the skin off the top of the apple (which I later realized was intended to keep them from bursting). That first batch was delicious but unphotographable, and I knew I'd have to make them again to post them on the blog. I've never been so happy to have a recipe fail!


Baked Apples with Cider Butter Sauce

6 apples
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup chopped dried cherries or raisins
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp grated nutmeg
1/2 cup apple cider
2 Tbsp butter, melted
2 tsp cornstarch

Core each apple almost to bottom, leaving base intact. Slice off 3/4 inch wide strip of peel around hole at top, and score through the skin halfway down, all the way around the apple. (These prevent the apple from bursting.)

In bowl, combine brown sugar, dried cherries, cinnamon and nutmeg; pack into apples. Place in 4- to 5- quart slow cooker. Whisk together apple cider and butter; pour over apples.

Cover and cook on low, basting several times, until tender, about 3 to 4 hours. Transfer apples to shallow serving dish and keep warm.

Whisk cornstarch with 1 Tbsp cold water; whisk into liquid in slow cooker. Cover and cook on high until sauce is thickened, about 15 minutes.

Serve warm with ice cream.

24 comments:

Julie said...

Oh my those look amazing. Here's to slowing down December. :)

Liz Berg said...

Mmmm...I love baked apples! And I think of these as a lighter dessert option :) Win-win!

Liz Berg said...

Mmmm...I love baked apples! And I think of these as a lighter dessert option :) Win-win!

Jemi Fraser said...

I've never tried baked apples - but I bet the smell is heavenly!! :)

The Glamorous Gourmet said...

Good Lord these apples look positively dreamy!!! I can only imagine how heavenly their aroma is, can't wait to make them - thanks for sharing:)

Marcelle @ A Little Fish in the Kitchen said...

Oh my goodness, I bet these did smell amazing while they were in the crockpot! And that sauce, yum! They look scrumptious :) I'm keeping these in mind for a Christmas Eve treat for my family, thanks for sharing.

Andrea_TheKitchenLioness said...

Dear Beth, baked and stuffed apples count among our very favorite Christmas time indulgences...your recipe sounds absolutely fabulous!
Andrea

Katerina said...

Beth congratulations you are one of the two winners of the baskets with Greek delicacies from trofos.com. Please send me your address so I can forward it to the sponsor to send you your basket! Again congratulations and Happy Holidays to you and your family!

Beth said...

Wow, Katerina, that's great! I've just sent my information through your website. Thanks for hosting such a great giveaway!

Natalie Aguirre said...

I feel the same way. Time is flying by. This sounds delicious.

Amy said...

I feel like time is flying more and more every year. I can't believe it's December again already. Your baked apples look fantastic.

Gloria Baker said...

Im agree ! The times flying more and more.. almost Christmas I can´t believe!!!These apples look delicious !!
xoxoxox

Laura Dembowski said...

I love that song. It reminds me of growing up. When I was way to young to be watching VH1 and MTV, I was obsessed with them and music. I have a love of all kinds of music because of it. December will certainly go fast, but I'm glad you made these yummy apples!

grace said...

i love that song too, and many more from the counting crows! these are some glorious apples, beth--the aroma alone makes them worth making!

Monica said...

Gosh, I can practically smell these. Sounds so very cosy and delicious, Beth. I agree about December...wish I could stretch it out and make it last longer. Even when I slow down and feel more in the moment, more often, I realize we can't stop time. That said, we'll just keeping packing on the fun, the memories, the good food into this wonderful month!

Marcela N said...

Your Baked Apples look stunning! I'd die to have a few right now!

Tricia Buice said...

I bet those are wonderful! I too cannot believe how quickly time is getting away. Christmas will be here before I am ready ... again!

Kitchen Riffs said...

This year has really flown by! And I'm sure December will, too (it already is!). Great looking apples -- that cider butter sauce looks wonderful. Thanks!

Angie Schneider said...

I would have never thought of using slow cooker to make baked apples. They look so festive and very tasty, Beth.

I Wilkerson said...

Yes time does fly and it's been far too long since I've had a baked apple. How inspired to do it in a slow cooker! Two of my girls are getting impacted wisdom teeth out over winter break (that should make time slow down)--this might be a good intermediate eating (gumming) food!

DMS said...

I love that song! As soon as I saw the blog post title I started singing it. These slow cooked apples sound amazing. I had no idea I could bake apples in my slow cooker! Thanks for sharing.
~Jess

crumblesandkaleblog said...

This just looks so delicious and I love the sound of the cider-sauce

Abbe Odenwalder said...

Love bakes apples. They always spell home to me! And that song. Yes. That song!

nancy at good food matters said...

I've never had a long December---it can be the most fleeting of months! (January, however, is another matter...) This is a fabulous--and fairly healthy!----dessert. I love this recipe---thanks, Beth!

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