Bringing Home the Harvest

You’re feeling like a proud pilgrim with that bag of shiny apples you picked at the orchard (or out of that giant bin at the grocery store), but now what? Push that heap beyond the pies and ciders of autumns past and into exciting new territory. Stuffed with pork, smoothed into soup, fried into fritters, this year’s bounty is bound to be the best yet.

Carrot Apple Ginger Soup

Courtesy of Home Wine
Kitchen’s Cassy Vires

4 Servings

3 Tbsp. olive oil
1 small yellow onion, sliced
2 Tbsp. freshly grated ginger
1 garlic clove, minced
1 small apple, peeled and sliced, plus additional for garnish
1½ cups sliced, peeled carrots
1 cup white wine
4 cups vegetable broth
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Pinch nutmeg
Freshly chopped chives for garnish

• Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the onions and cook until soft.
• Add the ginger and garlic and saute until fragrant.
• Add the apples and carrots, and cook until they begin to soften and brown.
• Deglaze the pot with the white wine, then add the vegetable broth. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer and let simmer until the soup is flavorful and all of the vegetables are soft. Remove from heat and let cool.
• Once the soup has cooled, purée it in a blender and then return it to the pot. Bring the soup back to a simmer and then adjust the seasoning as needed with salt, pepper and nutmeg.
• Garnish with fresh apple slices and chopped chives.

Apple Brie Toasts

Courtesy of Pomme Café and
Wine Bar’s Josh Witte

10 Servings

2 Tbsp. whole cloves
2 Tbsp. ground cinnamon
2 Tbsp. crushed nutmeg
4 Golden Delicious apples, peeled, cored and sliced into 1∕8-inch-thick half moons
¼ cup granulated sugar
½ cup dried apricots, halved
½ cup dried figs, stemmed and halved
½ cup dried apples, stemmed
1 cup golden raisins
1 cup raisins
1 lb. light brown sugar
¼ cup brandy
2 cups water
1 French baguette, sliced on a bias into 1∕8-inch-thick slices
¼ wheel of brie, cut into 1∕8-inch-thick slices

• Preheat the broiler.
• Using a spice mill, grind the cloves, cinnamon and nutmeg together to a fine powder. Set aside.
• Heat a saute pan over high heat and add the apple slices and granulated sugar. Cook, stirring constantly until the apples turn a golden color, about 2 to 3 minutes. Remove the caramelized apples from the heat and set aside.
• In a separate saute pan, combine the dried fruits, brown sugar and spice mixture and saute over high heat until the sugar melts and the ingredients meld together.
• Add the brandy and flambé, being careful to step away from the stove. When the flames die down, add the water.
• Reduce the heat to medium and simmer, stirring constantly, for 5 to 7 minutes, or until the sauce reduces to a thick honey-like consistency. Set aside.
• Place the French baguette slices on a foil-lined baking sheet. Top each slice with 1 slice of brie. Place the baking sheet under the broiler for 2 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and the bread is golden.
• Finally, assemble the toasts: Place 1 to 2 slices of caramelized apples onto each toast. Spoon 1 to 2 tablespoons of the dried fruit mixture on top.
• Serve immediately.

Pulled Korean BBQ Pork Apples

Courtesy of Mosaic’s Ben Lester

4 Servings

¾ cup paprika
¼ cup cumin
¼ cup chili powder
2 Tbsp. granulated garlic
2 Tbsp. onion powder
¼ lb. brown sugar
4 Tbsp. kosher salt
3 Tbsp. freshly ground black pepper
4 to 6 lb. boneless pork shoulder
2 Tbsp. Korean soy sauce
4 garlic cloves, minced
4 Tbsp. Korean chili paste
1 pear, peeled, cored and puréed
2 Tbsp. honey
2 Tbsp. plus 1½ tsp. brown sugar, divided
1 Tbsp. freshly minced ginger
2 Tbsp. mirin
4 Fuji apples
¼ tsp. ground cinnamon
2 Tbsp. butter
4 Tbsp. goat cheese for garnish
1 oz. roasted pistachios for garnish

• Combine the first 8 ingredients (through black pepper) in a small bowl.
• Rub the pork shoulder liberally with the spice mixture and place in the refrigerator overnight.
• The following day, prepare the pork*: Using a smoker or barbecue, cook the pork shoulder according to the manufacturer’s directions using lump charcoal and ½ cup soaked and drained wood chips. Start the fire and bring the temperature of the smoker or barbecue to 225 degrees. Place the pork on a rack inside the smoker or barbecue. Cover and cook until a thermometer inserted into the meat registers 165 degrees, turning the pork every 45 minutes, for about 8 hours total, or until the meat is falling apart. Add more charcoal as needed to maintain 225 degrees and more drained wood chips to maintain the smoke level. Let the pork cool slightly and break it apart into chunks.
• Next, make the bulgogi: Add the Korean soy sauce, minced garlic, chili paste, pear purée, honey, 1½ teaspoons of brown sugar, minced ginger and mirin to a large pot. Stir until well combined.
• Add the smoked pork chunks to the bowl and simmer until the sauce is thick and the meat is glazed.
• Meanwhile, prepare the apples: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
• Cut the tops off of the apples just below the stem. Use a melon baller to scoop the flesh and core out of each apple, removing as much of the flesh as possible to just allow the apple to keep its shape.
• Thoroughly combine the remaining 2 tablespoons of brown sugar with the cinnamon and butter. Divide the butter mixture between the apples, filling each cavity with one-quarter of the mixture.
• Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the apples just begin to soften but retain their shape.
• To serve, divide the bulgogi-glazed pork among each apple cavity. Garnish each apple with 1 tablespoon of goat cheese and ¼ ounce of roasted pistachios.

* Alternatively, you can purchase pulled pork at finer area butchers.

Green Apple Potatoes

Courtesy of Mosaic’s Ben Lester

4 to 6 Servings

¼ lb. butter
2 Granny Smith apples, peeled and cored
3 garlic cloves, roasted and then peeled
2 lb. Red Bliss potatoes, quartered
¼ cup plus 1 Tbsp. salt, divided
½ cup heavy cream, plus additional as needed
4 sprigs freshly chopped thyme
1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
2 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar

• Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
• Place a knob of butter inside each apple. Wrap the apples in aluminum foil and place on a baking sheet. Roast for 30 to 40 minutes, or until soft. Remove from the oven and let cool.
• Once cool, place the apples in the bowl of a food processor, along with the roasted garlic cloves. Purée until smooth. Set aside.
• Place the potatoes in a large pot and cover with cold water. Add ¼ cup of salt, and bring the potatoes to a simmer. Let simmer until they are easily pierced with a knife. Drain and add the potatoes to a large mixing bowl.
• Add the heavy cream, thyme, pepper and remaining tablespoon of salt to a medium sauce pot set over medium heat. Bring to a simmer. Immediately remove from heat and strain, reserving the cream.
• Add the warm cream to the bowl with the potatoes.
• Add the apple cider vinegar and the apple purée to the bowl and whip the potatoes until they are chunky yet combined. Adjust seasoning as needed.
• Serve warm.

Apple Fritters with Lemon Curd

Courtesy of Kelly English Steakhouse’s Kelly English

6 to 8 Servings

½ cup whole milk
1 tsp. vanilla
1 egg
2 Tbsp. butter, melted
1 Tbsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. salt
1½ cups cake flour
1 Tbsp. orange zest
½ cup small diced Granny Smith
1/8 cup granulated sugar
Canola oil for frying

• Combine all of the ingredients except the canola oil in a bowl. Stir with a wooden spoon until a dough forms. Let rest at room temperature for 30 minutes.
• Roll the dough into 6 to 8 equally sized balls.
• Heat 1 to 2 inches of canola oil in a skillet. Working in batches, if necessary, pan-fry the fritters until brown and cooked through. Remove to a paper towel-lined plate to drain.
• Toss the fritters in the sugar.
• Serve with lemon curd (recipe follows).

Lemon Curd

Makes 1 Quart

10 egg yolks
2 cups granulated sugar
²∕³ cup fresh lemon juice plus zest of 6 lemons
½ lb. butter, melted

• Combine the yolks and sugar in a large, heat proof bowl. Mix with a whisk until blended.
• Add the lemon juice and zest then mix until well-combined.
• Place the bowl over a pot of simmering water. Let cook, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is thick. Remove from heat.
• Slowly drizzle in the butter and stir until all of the butter has dissolved.