My family and I went apple picking last weekend. Let’s just say that will be the last time I go apple picking for at least five years. Without little kids, it just isn’t worth walking through a dusty, winding orchard and stepping on rotting apples to grab a bunch of fruit that I could have gotten for half the price at the farmer’s market. It just plain feels like work. That we paid for.
At least they are some darned good apples! Pictured here, with some caramel I had been trying to hunt down.
Luckily, for my last Friday of freedom (explanation to come soon), I had a bunch of errands to run. One of them was a much needed trip to Trader Joe’s, upon which I picked up far more things than I needed to. (Everything just looks so good! Or I was hungry. Or maybe both.) I stumbled upon a jar of “Trader Jacques’ Fleur de Sel Caramel Sauce” which quickly found its way into my basket. With a small spoonful (14 grams) on a freshly-picked apple, I had the perfect snack for 150 calories.
For some more apple-goodness, this past week I’ve used these apples in my morning oats with cinnamon and a bit of brown sugar. I put the fruit in with the oats for the whole cooking time, so the whole breakfast tasted a lot like baked apples.
Fresh and far better than any pre-packaged apple/cinnamon oats. The dish took maybe one minute longer to prepare than an instant kind. It’s worth that one minute.
Tonight Mike whipped up a batch of pumpkin-apple risotto. He wanted something autumnal, pumpkiny, and appley so this was his creation. An onion, some butter, five cups of my homemade vegetable broth, some white wine, a cup of arborio rice, a can and a half of Trader Joe’s pumpkin, one orchard-picked apple, a dash of nutmeg, and a few springs of sage from our backyard garden later…
And there it is. I had a really small portion, but boy was it good. Definitely a hearty fall dish. Hats off to the chef!
And for a perfect end to my day, a nice pot of tea. I love my teapot. It was a gift from Mike our first Christmas together, and it gets a lot of use. The honeys are a more recent gift from my former-roommate. Right after I moved out, she took a trip to Greece and I cat-sat while she was gone. To show her appreciation, she brought me lots of goodies from each stop of her trip. I didn’t need anything, but I guess there’s no reason to complain about honey (…or a mortar & pestle, donkey salt & pepper shakers, apple tea or rocks for my rock collection, for that matter! Thanks, Lynn!) About eight or nine apples are in the bowl in the background, just a third of our haul.
I’m pretty sure apples will make their way into my dreams. Or at least the caramel sauce. I hear it calling my name…