Baked Apples / Ginger Whipped Cream

Went apple picking at Apple Ridge Orchards in New Hampton, NY so watch out for more apple recipes than you probably want.

This is a healthy dessert if you go without the whipped cream (but why would you want to do that?)  I think these could also be suitable for breakfast with yogurt and granola.  I prefer whipped cream not to be sweet but feel free to add more to your liking.  Along with the whipped cream, I served these with red zinger maple syrup.

Baked Apples

4 apples, washed and dried



Heat oven to 375 degrees.  Remove stem and core apples.  Peel apples so they look like they are wearing vertical peel stripes.  Dust will cinnamon and nutmeg.  Place right side up on baking dish.  Add about 1/4 inch of water.  Bake uncovered about 40 minutes.  (I like to flip mine half way through and add a pinch of water if all of it has evaporated at this point for more even baking.) Remove from oven and serve warm.

Ginger Whipped Cream

8oz heavy (whipping) cream

2 teaspoons powdered sugar (optional)

2 teaspoons fresh ginger, peeled and finely grated (i love a good micro plane)

In a bowl, whisk cream until it almost begins to stiffen, about 5 minutes.  Add sugar and ginger.  Whisk until cream forms little peaks.

Blueberry Lemon Popsicles

still hot out.

Blueberry Lemon Popsicles

juice of 4 lemons

1/3 cup agave

2 cups water

1 pint blueberries

In a pitcher mix lemon juice, agave and water.   Set aside.  Crush Blueberries with your fingers and distribute evenly into molds.  Fill with lemonade mixture.  Insert sticks and freeze.


Rhubarb Jam Class

Saturday I had the pleasure to attend a Jam Making class at the Brooklyn Kitchen taught by Millicent Souris.  During the class we also learned the basics of canning safely.  (Millicent put the fear of botulism in me.)

The class was great fun.  Small,  with 12 students working in groups of 4, and very hands on.  We learned both about jam making and canning.

We made two types of Rhubarb Jam - a slow version which was deeper in flavor with a smooth jelly texture and a quick one which had a punchier flavor and preserved some of the rhubarbs shape and texture.  We ate the slow jam warm over a delicious biscuit of Millicent's own recipe.  We were all very curious how to make these biscuit and she told us the recipe is online - look it up!

Quick Rhubarb Jam

2 lbs rhubarb stalks, leaves trimmed and sliced

1 cup granulated sugar

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon pectin

zest and juice of one lemon

1 teaspoon corriander

1 teaspoon lavender

2 sprigs thyme

1 teaspoon calcium water

Toss rhubarb with sugar, salt and pectin and let sit about 10 minutes until it begins to soften and release liquid.  Add lemon juice and zest.  Tie corriander, lavender and thyme is cheesecloth and add to rhubarb mix.  Transfer everything to a large pot and simmer about 12 minutes.  Add calcium water.  Once ready, remove from heat.

We learned to test for doneness with a frozen plate: place a bit of cooked rhubarb on a frozen plate.  Push it with a finger and see if it moves cleanly over like jelly.

Jam can now be processed and canned or eaten over toasty biscuits.  For safe canning instructions take a peek at the usda guide to home canning. 

Pina Colada Popsicles

More bonding with the ice pop molds.

Pina Colada Popsicles about 12oz fresh pineapple pieces or 1 drained tin of pineapple 6oz container vanilla yogurt (i used greek) 3/4 cup lite coconut milk 3 tablespoons agave syrup

Blend. Pour into molds and freeze.

Berry Popsicles

a new favorite treat.

Yogurt Berry Berry Popsicles

8oz (half a bag) frozen raspberries

8oz (half a bag) frozen blueberries

2 containers greek yogurt (5.3oz each)

1 cup milk

2 tablespoon agave

Blend all ingredients.  Pour into popsicle molds and freeze.

Bourbon Bananas Foster

Traditionally made with rum which i never have lying around. Those who know me know my love of bourbon. So, i present you with my new favorite breakfast: Bourbon Bananas Foster 4 ripe bananas, peeled cut lengthwise and halved 2 tablespoons butter 4 tablespoons brown sugar 2 shots bourbon Heat butter and sugar on medium heat until its caramelized, about 2 minutes. Add bananas cook until warm, about 2 minutes. Add bourbon. Cook on each side until a pretty even light sugary brown color. Serve right away with ice cream or whip cream.

apple sauce with ginger and black pepper

This last December, like all Decembers I packed up my knife, micro plane, husband and puppy and made the long journey upstate to Ithaca, New York to cook and spend another delightful Christmas holiday with my family.  Ithaca, besides being a borderline boring place to grow up, I realized after moving away to NYC; is a place of great, fresh food with an abundance of  locally made goods and farm fresh produce.  With the seasonal hiatus of the union square green market, it has been weeks since I had seen a good apple.  Upon leaving Ithaca, my mother in true Mazzarella fashion proceeded to give me a verbal tour of the refrigerator asking what I would like to bring back to brooklyn.  I have assured her that although we are without a Wegman's, we are with a Wholefoods.  During this listing of condiments and snacks I did learn that my parents purchase apples BY THE BUSHEL at a nearby farm and were willing to part with said bushel.  A lovely farewell present.

I eat at least one apple a day.  Whether its crunchy slices pressed onto a peanut buttered toast for breakfast or a giant whole one for an afternoon snack or shredded into a carrot apple cake for dessert or layered into a tart also for an appropriate anytime snack or meal or as my favorite midnight snack: Apple sauce.   Possibly one of the easiest snacks to prepare and (as most homemade foods, much better than its store bought counterparts.

Recipe for Gingered/Black Peppered Apple Sauce:

  • Apples (any type and amount)
  • Water
  • Pinch of Salt
  • Black Pepper
  • Ground Ginger (more) + Nutmeg (less) + Cinnamon (less)

Wash, Peel, Core and Cut apples into Quarters.

Place apple pieces in a pot with about half and inch of water.  Cover and bring to boil then uncover and cook on medium heat for about 20 minutes or until apples are soft.  Add fresh ground black pepper and spices to taste.  (I made this batch a little peppery and quite spicy with the ginger.  The cinnamon will help bring out the sweetness).

Mash. Cool. Try to resist eating the entire batch.