BHG Delish Dish

Stirring Up Ideas In The Kitchen

winter

 

Hi everyone! I’m Tux from Brooklyn Homemaker!

I’m a food blogger, photographer, dog lover, husband, and avid baker living in Bushwick, Brooklyn. I hope you’ll love my recipes and much as I love sharing them. If you want to learn more about me or my blog, please visit Brooklyn Homemaker and take a look around!

The internet is a seriously amazing place when you stop and think about it.

It’s hard to even remember what life was like before we had the world wide web, before smart phones, and before free public wifi. Back when you’d have to wait until you got home to look up the useless bar trivia we now have answers to at the click of a button. Way back when you had to consult actual cook books to find recipes, rather than finding pages and pages of search results for even the most obscure cuisines.

I have shelves sagging with cookbooks, but most of them spend more time collecting dust than helping me cook. These days I rely on the internet to provide me with drool-worthy recipes and endless culinary inspiration. Most of the time, even when a recipe sounds mind-blowingly delicious, I like to make a few changes here and there to suit my taste. Increase this, substitute that, omit the other. You know. I’m sure you do the same, at least some of the time.

In my ceaseless internet exploration I recently stumbled across a recipe for pork and apple stew from Better Homes and Gardens that I just HAD to try.

I absolutely love pork, but have never really considered pork as a meat to use for making stew. Once I’d seen this recipe though, something clicked in my brain and I knew it wouldn’t be long before a big pot of it would be bubbling away in my oven. I mean, pork and apples are a match made in heaven, and stew is pretty much all I want to eat this time of year, so what’s not to love?

I made the original recipe first, as written here, because I wanted to see exactly how it would come out before making any changes. It was really delicious, but I wanted so see what I could do to make it just a little less sweet, and to add a bit more substance. The result is an insanely tasty stew with tender pieces of pork and hearty chunky vegetables, all tied together with earthy savory herbs and fresh bright apples and cider.

Here is the original recipe for Cider Pork and Apple Stew,
and below are the changes I made for my version of the recipe:

reduce to 2 apples
add 1 small sweet potato, peeled and cubed small
add 2 russet potatoes, peeled and cubed
add 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, finely chopped
reduce cider to 1/2 cup

Add the sweet potato and one of the chopped apples along with the onions, carrots, & parsnips in the recipe; and sauté until they begin to brown. This may take a few minutes more than the original recipe states because of the additional ingredients. Remove and set aside with pork as stated in the recipe.

Add chopped thyme leaves along with the sage, ginger, & garlic. After one minute add remaining apple and all of the cubed russet potatoes along with stock, vinegar and the reduced amount of cider.

Continue recipe as written.

 


cranberry apple crisp with yogurt

Hello! I’m Kate of Cookie and Kate, where I share simple, fresh vegetarian recipes. I hope you got your fill of pumpkin pie on Thanksgiving because I have a delightfully different cold weather dessert to share. This Apple Cranberry Crisp is neither too sweet nor too heavy. If you get a hankering for a lighter dessert to tide you over until the decadent Christmas desserts arrive, this is it.

apple crisp ingredients

To tell you the truth, I’m not much of a baker. The sheer thought of attempting pie crust and layered cakes makes me whimper. I do, however, love crisps and crumbles, because they are genuinely foolproof and don’t require any special equipment. Although they may not be as beautiful as their pie cousins, the truth is that they taste just as good.

apple crisp, ready to bake

I couldn’t resist this crisp recipe in particular because it contains fresh cranberries. I adore cranberries for their tart yet sweet flavor, and because they add vibrant pops of color to otherwise drab dishes. Unlike summer berries, which are wonderful in their raw state, cranberries need to be cooked in order to develop their irresistible sweetness. I am always looking for an excuse to fire up the stove or oven during the winter, so I appreciate cranberries for obliging. I really have no desire for strawberries and blueberries in the winter; it’s all about the cranberries!

cranberry apple crisp

I made a few simple modifications to this recipe to enhance its flavor and nutrition profile. For starters, I sweetened the apple and cranberry mixture with honey instead of granulated sugar and added two tablespoons of chopped candied ginger for extra kick. I also used old-fashioned oats instead of quick-cooking oats (since that’s what I had on hand) and whole wheat pastry flour instead of all purpose flour.

I used real butter in place of margarine, but next time, I’ll add an extra tablespoon or two. The recipe calls for very little butter as it is and I probably just didn’t cut it in well enough, but I felt like the crisp would have benefitted from a bit more fat and moisture. Regardless, this crisp was absolutely delicious, especially for breakfast the next day! I served mine with Greek yogurt, but if I had had ice cream in the freezer, I would have reached for that instead. Some cold, creamy ice cream would balance out the tart cranberries nicely.

cranberry apple crisp in bowls

If you happen to have apples and cranberries on hand, you could enjoy this crisp in just under an hour. If you’re wondering how many apples yields 5 cups of chopped apples, you’ll only need 2 large to 3 medium. Here’s the recipe!


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