Our family has gone apple picking since before my husband and I were a family! My husbands parents started the tradition. We joined in and the tradition has continued every year for going on 30 years I'd guess! Apple picking is not about the apples so much. You certainly can get them cheaper and for less work at the store. Apple picking is for seeing the joy your children get from finding the perfect apple, climbing trees, drinking cold cider, and creating memories.
But, you do have to do something with all those apples! So here are a few of my favorites:
Apple Puff Pancake
· 1 cup whole milk
· 4 large eggs
· 3 tablespoons sugar
· 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
· 1/2 teaspoon salt
· 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
· 2/3 cup all purpose flour
· 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
· 12 ounces Golden Delicious apples (about 2), peeled, cored, thinly sliced
3 tablespoons (packed) golden brown sugar
Preheat oven to 425°F. Whisk milk, eggs, sugar, vanilla, salt, and cinnamon in large bowl until well blended. Add flour and whisk until batter is smooth. Place butter in 13x9-inch glass baking dish. Place dish in oven until butter melts, about 5 minutes. Remove dish from oven. Place apple slices in overlapping rows atop melted butter in baking dish. Return to oven and bake until apples begin to soften slightly and butter is bubbling and beginning to brown around edges of dish, about 10 minutes.
Pour batter over apples in dish and sprinkle with brown sugar. Bake pancake until puffed and brown, about 20 minutes. Sprinkle with powdered sugar, if desired. Serve warm.
Apple Cider Syrup
· 1 tablespoon butter
· 2 cups apple cider
· 1 cup brown sugar
· 2 cinnamon sticks
In a heavy saucepan over medium heat, melt butter. When butter stops foaming, add the apple cider, brown sugar, and cinnamon sticks. Bring to a boil, stirring. Continue cooking over medium heat, stirring frequently, until reduced by half to about 1 to 1 1/4 cups. This will take about 15 minutes. The syrup will thicken as it cools