Monday, 16 May 2011

dessert for breakfast

I ate leftover dessert for Sunday morning breakfast.  I asked for advice about this first and after receiving overwhelming encouragement to do so from my Facebook friends, I decided to comply with their strong instructions!  And also as prescribed, I  ate it while I was in bed.  I have to tell you... dessert for breakfast in bed on Sunday is the best!  Yes it is! 

So after extensive research, I have developed the Breakfast Baked Apple and it can be done 2 ways:  either baked in the traditional oven, which is recommended if you have the time; or you can nuke it for 3 minutes.  I have tested this extensively using the following variables:  two different sorts of apples, cooked 2 different ways.  And the results are in:
 Left:  Micro Granny Smith; Right: Micro Gala

Microwaved Granny Smith (almost fave)  Although it looks microwaved, it is not unappealing in itself.  After cooking and standing on a bench for 10 minutes, it is well cooked.  The spice of the cinnamon flavour and maple syrup is enhanced by this type of cooking.  Maple adds flavour to the sharpness of the apple.  The topping is not crunchy however the overall time saving benefits are well worth the experiment.  Would be excellent for a breakfast – as it takes 3 minutes to nuke.
Microwaved Gala Apple (second least fave)  Mild in flavour with firm texture.  Quite a tough skin.  The topping is not crunchy and neither are the nuts.  Although not as visually appealing as the oven baked gala, it is easier to eat and preferable in texture and flavour.

Oven Baked Gala Apple (least fave)
There is an appealing promise of a crunchy topping and juicy fruit.  The texture is dry and firm after 40 minutes of baking, although it is cooked through – it doesn’t go ‘jammy’ inside.  The flesh is tasteless after baking.  Not a good apple to bake in the oven.

Left: Baked Granny Smith; Right: Baked Gala
Oven Baked Granny Smith (this is the one!)  Most visually appealing with the best topping, as it is crunchy and complements the tartness of the apple beautifully.  The maple syrup gets dried out in the oven so the baked apple does need yoghurt (or custard) for textural contrast.  I love the blend of crunchy, smooth, hot apple and cold yoghurt with flavours of cinnamon and maple.  This is the one.

Recipe:  4 apples cut in half and cored, topped with ½ cup rolled oats, 4 tbsp hazelnut meal, 2 tbsp slivered almonds, 1 tsp cinnamon, 4 tbsp orange juice, zest of 1 lemon, 2 tbsp maple syrup.   Either nuke for 3 minutes on high; or bake 40 minutes (cover with foil for the first 20 minutes) and put 2 tbsp water in the pan with the apples.

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