What do you do when you’ve got lots of apples in the house or, as was with my case, have apples that are on the
verge of turning?
Bake ’em of course!
I had four large Mutsu (also known as Crispin) apples that I had picked up at the local butcher store that were on the verge of self-fermenting. Not quite off but almost so; they tasted a little sour. Always hating to throw out or waste food, I thought I’d try salvaging them with a classic baked apple recipe.
Apples are a low cost, nutritious fruit that are grown around the world including Southern Ontario where I live. Apples are full of fiber, a smattering of vitamins and minerals but are loaded with health promoting polyphenols; compounds naturally found in plant foods that are responsible for lower rates of many chronic diseases such as cancer and heart disease.
A classic baked apple recipe typically uses raisins, chopped walnuts or almonds and butter, none of which I had so I improvised.
By using Brazil nuts, or mixing Brazil nuts with another nut like walnuts, you’ll get a healthy dose of the mineral selenium; often lacking in North American diets, selenium helps to make the antioxidant glutathione and higher intakes of selenium are associated with lower rates of cancer and cardiovascular disease. Selenium is also needed along with iodine to ensure healthy thyroid function [always thinking like a functional and integrative nutritionist!)
Baked Apples with Brazil Nuts & Figs
- 4 large apples
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup finely diced figs
- 1/4 cup chopped Brazil nuts
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- coconut oil
- 3/4 cup of boiling water
Preheat oven to 375 F or 190 C
Using a paring knife (or apple corer), gently core out the apple making sure you don't go through the bottom of the apple; you'll need the cavity to hold the filling
In a small bowl, mix together the brown sugar, diced figs, Brazil nuts and cinnamon.
Place the apples in a 9 x 9 inch baking dish. Divide the fruit, nut and spice mixture among the apples, spooning it into the hollows and filling them to the top.
Top with a dollop of virgin coconut oil
Pour the boiling water into the baking dish
Bake for 30 to 40 minutes* or until the apples are soft. Test with a knife
Cool to room temperature. Serve as is, or top with some plain yogurt. Voila! Baked apples
* I used a convection oven and it only took 30 mins.