We’ve picked all our apples, and have them stored in twelve large bins in the barn. Getting them in by mid-October seems to be the right time. The late ripening Jonathans’ pips have turned brown, and their flesh is beautifully tinged with pink. From the three Gala, Bramley’s Seedling & Jonathan trees we probably have 700 lbs stored. This is after weeks of eating them, and feeding gallons of windfalls to the livestock. While we give away many, the bins will safely store them for us right through March. By March the apples will have had their run. The livestock will start to get the slightly withered ones that are still left.
One year in mid-November, when the trees were still fairly young, we were away for a couple of days. Both of us working different shifts, and not home together during daylight hours. On the second day, my husband noticed that I had picked all the apples. When I came home, I thanked him for picking all the apples. Oops! Neither of us had picked any apples. We checked all around the trees, and found cores everywhere. Our local branch of the raccoons had come in and done it for us while we were asleep. We got none. Ever since, we’ve tried to get them by mid-October at the latest.
With so many apples, most of our desserts tend to be apple based. For the past several weeks I’ve been working on an apple pudding that isn’t super sweet, and works beautifully whether an all-purpose wheat or Gluten Free flour is used. It has taken awhile, simply because we can only eat so many apple puddings! Friends and family have been kind when I turn up once again with a pudding as my contribution to dinner. I must say though, no one has ever turned it down, in any of its reincarnations. We enjoy it with a little custard sauce, or some Crème Anglaise.
Zest & juice of a lemon
2# apples ~ I’ve used Bramley’s Seedlings here
½ c cranberries ~ fresh or frozen
2 T sugar
1 T tapioca starch or ½ T cornstarch
2 T butter for dotting the fruit
4 oz butter (½ c) ~ room temperature
¼ c white sugar
¼ c brown sugar
1 t vanilla
2 eggs ~ room temperature
1 c all-purpose flour ~ wheat or Gluten Free
½ T baking powder
¼ t salt
Preheat the oven to 350°
Lightly butter a 2-quart baking dish.
Put the lemon zest and juice into a medium sized bowl.
Peel, core, and chop the apples, mixing them into the lemon juice & zest as you work. The pieces of apple should be about ¼” thick, and a mix of shapes and sizes so they stay tumbled rather than cooking into each other.
Stir in the cranberries – these give the fruit filling a lovely pink tinge, along with their tartness.
Break up the two tablespoons of butter over the fruit.
Beat until mixed, and then continue creaming them together for 5 minutes at a medium setting.
Add in the two eggs and beat until well blended.
In a small bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
Bake in the center of the oven for 45 minutes.
Let cool for one hour before serving. The sponge topping will settle a bit while it cools.
Spoon the pudding onto plates or bowls, and serve with custard sauce or Crème Anglaise.