Fall greetings to all! In this post are recipes for Ricotta Pancakes and Baked Sliced Apples, both of which are suitable for the fall weather some of us have and some of us are still anticipating.
First I’d like to share a bit of nostalgia from my childhood. As I remember it was mostly in the fall and winter months that my mother made what we all called “Apple Toast.” Apple Toast was a slice of buttered toast covered with cooked apples that was so delicious and which made a nice hot breakfast to eat before walking to school. (We only lived a block away from my elementary school!) I loved apple toast!
For many years in the fall we would pile into the car and drive to Taylorsville, North Carolina to buy some freshly-picked apples that grew in the orchards there. Our favorite apples included Red Delicious, Yellow Delicious, Cortland and Winesap varieties.
The apples my mother cooked were peeled, sliced and cooked with cinnamon, sugar and enough water to keep them from sticking to the pan. A few years before she died my mother found a recipe she liked for Baked Sliced Apples that is very reminiscent of the apples we ate on Apple Toast years ago. This recipe can be baked in a conventional oven or in a microwave oven. If you’re short on time, the microwave method only takes 10 minutes.
- 4 cups sliced apples (peelings may be left on or off - your preference)
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- Place apples in the desired baking dish.
- Melt butter in a saucepan; add cornstarch, sugar and water.
- Cook over medium heat until mixture begins to thicken. Add 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract.
- Pour cooked mixture over apples. Sprinkle cinnamon and nutmeg over apple mixture.
- Bake at 375 degrees F. for 30-40 minutes or until apples are tender.
- If using microwave, bake for 10 minutes using high setting.
Ricotta Pancakes are made by sifting together the dry ingredients – flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. For a pancake without any lumps I recommend not skipping the sifting! The ricotta, egg yolks, buttermilk, lemon juice and lemon zest are combined in a bowl.
In a separate bowl, egg whites are beaten until stiff peaks form. [As a side note here, my trusty Kitchen Aid mixer is 40 years old! I bought it in the summer of 1975! It has been a real workhorse for me and I’m not being paid to say this!]
The dry ingredients are stirred into the wet ingredients, then the beaten egg whites are folded into the batter.
Butter the griddle or pan and use a 6-ounce ladle or a measuring cup to pour the batter into the pan. (You may need to smooth the batter into a round shape at this point.) Cook the pancakes on one side until set, then flip and cook on the other side, about 6 minutes total.
I served these pancakes with bacon and heated up some peach slices I had canned a few years ago to serve with the pancakes and some maple syrup. It doesn’t get much better than this!
- 2 cups ricotta cheese
- 4 large eggs, separated
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- Pinch salt
- Butter for cooking
- 1 cup maple syrup, warmed
- Combine the ricotta, egg yolks, buttermilk, lemon juice and zest in a large mixing bowl.
- Sift the dry ingredients: flour, sugar, baking powder and salt together into the ricotta mixture and stir until combined fully.
- In a separate bowl whisk egg whites until stiff peaks form and then gently fold into the batter.
- Heat a large non-stick pan or griddle over medium heat and add a little butter.
- Use a 6-ounce ladle or measuring cup to pour batter into the pan.
- Cook the pancakes on one side until they are set.
- When small bubbles appear on the uncooked side, flip the pancakes and cook until golden on both sides, about 6 minutes.
- Serve with warm maple syrup and/or warm fruit sauce, such as apples, peaches or blueberries.
- These pancakes seem to take just a few more minutes to cook than a regular pancake. Be sure to smooth out the batter into a nice circle when you ladle it onto the griddle or fry pan.
- If you don't have buttermilk on hand you can add 1 tablespoon of vinegar to a cup of regular milk and let it sit for a few minutes to curdle.
Speaking of breakfast & brunch, I heard of someone that made a grilled cheese sandwich in their waffle iron. Naturally I had to try it. It makes for an interesting presentation with little squares all over the bread! Nice to know that an appliance can multitask!
To assist you in menu planning for the fall, foods that are in season are bell peppers, Brussel sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, fennel, leeks, parsnips, pumpkins, red potatoes, rutabagas, sweet potatoes, winter squash, apples, cranberries, figs, pears, pomegranates, parsley, rosemary, sage, tarragon and thyme. Foods are at their peak taste and appearance when they are in season and usually the price is best when in season also. Just thought you’d like to know!
Remember to Savor the Flavor!
Linked to www.stonegableblog.com, www.southernsavvystyle.net and www.makeaheadmealsforbusymoms.com.