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Monday, October 18, 2010

Apple Dumplings with Cider Sauce

A dumpling is a cooked ball of dough. It can be steamed, boiled, baked, fried, sweet, savory, filled or not. But an apple dumpling is a little handful of heaven. When it's done right.

I have been dying to try this recipe since last year. When there is fruit, syrup, filling and dough involved, my mouth waters but my confidence trembles. So much can go wrong! But. If someone is going to get it right, it is probably the Test Kitchen so I forged ahead.

Hello. Yummo. Here is why the Test Kitchen got it right:
  • Dough - they tried several types and settled on a sweet biscuit dough which was easier to work with and did a good job absorbing the liquid without becoming soggy. I can attest, the dough was perfect.
  • Apple - again, tried several types AND amounts. Whole apples didn't cook all the way through. Some varieties turned to mush. Halved golden delicious was perfect.
  • Sauce - instead of baking the dumplings in syrup, which just makes them soggy, they make a delicious apple cider sauce separately and pour it on for serving. I did say yummo, right?
Apple Dumplings
2 1/2cups all-purpose flour
3tablespoons sugar
2teaspoons baking powder
3/4teaspoon salt
10tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter , cut into 1/2-inch pieces and chilled
5tablespoons vegetable shortening , cut into 1/2-inch pieces and chilled
3/4cups cold buttermilk

6tablespoons sugar
1teaspoon ground cinnamon
3tablespoons unsalted butter , softened
3tablespoons golden raisins , chopped
4Golden Delicious apples*
2egg whites , lightly beaten

1. MAKE DOUGH Process flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in food processor until combined. Scatter butter and shortening over flour mixture and pulse until mixture resembles wet sand. Transfer to bowl. Stir in buttermilk until dough forms. Turn out onto lightly floured surface and knead briefly until dough is cohesive. Press dough into 8- by 4-inch rectangle. Cut in half, wrap each half tightly in plastic, and refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour.

2. PREP APPLES Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 425 degrees. Combine sugar and cinnamon in small bowl. In second bowl, combine butter, raisins, and 3 tablespoons cinnamon sugar mixture. Peel apples and halve through equator. Remove core using a melon baller and pack butter mixture into each apple half.

3. ASSEMBLE DUMPLINGS On lightly floured surface, roll each dough half into 12-inch square. Cut each 12-inch square into four 6-inch squares. Working one at a time, lightly brush edges of dough square with egg white and place apple, cut-side up, in center of each square. Gather dough one corner at a time on top of apple, crimping edges to seal. Using paring knife, cut vent hole in top of each dumpling.

4. FINISH APPLES Line rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Arrange dumplings on prepared baking sheet, brush tops with egg white, and sprinkle with remaining cinnamon sugar. Bake until dough is golden brown and juices are bubbling, 20 to 25 minutes. Cool on baking sheet 10 minutes. Serve with Cider Sauce.

*Other sweet, moderately firm apples such as Gala or Braeburn can be substituted.

Cider Sauce
Makes about 1 1/2 cups
1cup apple cider
1cup water
1cup sugar
1/2teaspoon ground cinnamon
2tablespoons unsalted butter
1tablespoon lemon juice

Bring cider, water, sugar, and cinnamon to simmer in saucepan and cook over medium-high heat until thickened and reduced to 1½ cups, about 15 minutes. Off heat, whisk in butter and lemon juice. Drizzle over dumplings to serve.

Recipes from Cook's Country, October 2009

1 comment:

Leslie said...

Ohhh my! I have not had an apple dumpling in ages! looks yummy

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