Cran-Apple Compote with Meringue and Caramel Sauce

I had just finished my evening rituals with Gratsie (my Maine Coon cat) and was about to leave the family room when our guest cook sister entered the room waving her camera at me with a look in her eye that told me she was pleased with something she wanted to show me…

With one innovative idea she had succeeded in transforming our popular summer tart into a Fall/Winter version using apples and cranberries laced with caramel sauce, replacing the usual summer strawberries, peaches and nectarines.

A graceful (and delicious) transition from one season to another with an amazing result! We both smiled as the cat swished her tail, and we all went to bed purring.

Print Recipe
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Cran-Apple Compote with Meringue and Caramel Sauce
SERVINGS
4servings
CHANGE SERVING SIZE
servings
COOK TIME
2hrs
PREP TIME
35mins
READY IN
2 hrs35 mins

Ingredients

Instructions

Meringue
  1. Separate one egg at a time into a small bowl, letting the white fall into the bowl and discarding the yolk. If there’s any trace of yolk in the white, discard the white and start over. If it’s yolk-free, transfer to a clean medium mixing bowl. Repeat with the remaining 2 eggs.
  2. Add cream of tartar to the whites and beat with an electric mixer on medium-high speed until soft peaks form.
  3. Slowly add sugar, about 1 tablespoon at a time, until all the sugar has been added. Continue beating until the whites are stiff and glossy. Add vanilla and beat for 30 seconds more.
  4. Position racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven; preheat to 200 degrees Fahrenheit.
  5. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper. Place a small amount of the meringue under each corner of the paper to secure it to the pan.
  6. Fill a 1-quart sealable plastic bag (or pastry bag fitted with a 1/2-inch plain tip) with the meringue. Seal the bag almost completely, leaving a small opening for air to escape from the top as you squeeze.
  7. Snip off one corner of the bag with scissors, making a 3/4-inch-wide opening. Fold the top of the bag over a few times, then gently push the meringue down to the snipped corner.
  8. Working with the bag perpendicular to the baking sheet, pipe the meringue into 2-inch-diameter tarts, spacing them about 1/2 inch apart.
  9. Bake the tarts until dry and crisp throughout, about 1 1/2 hours. Transfer the pans to wire racks and let the tarts cool to room temperature, about 15 minutes.
Apple-Cranberry Compote
  1. Peel and chop the apples of your choice. Sprinkle with lemon juice to prevent browning and set aside. For this recipe, we used Golden Delicious.
  2. In a medium-sized saucepan, melt the butter and add the chopped apples on medium heat.
  3. Add the sugar and seasonings to the apples and cook until fork-tender. Keep an eye on the apples and sugar, reduce heat if needed. The sugar should melt into a consistency similar to syrup. Turn the heat down if sugar starts to caramelize.
  4. Add the whole cranberries and cook a few minutes more until the cranberries start to burst. If you prefer, cook a bit longer to cook the cranberries a little more, adding sugar as necessary, depending on how tart the berries are.
  5. Remove from heat, set aside and arrange the meringues on a plate or serving platter.
  6. Gently heat the caramel sauce and spoon into the center of the meringue, tumbling the Cran-Apple compote on top. Drizzle with extra caramel sauce if desired.
  7. Serve at room-temperature and pair this tangy-sweet seasonal dessert with a steaming cup of tea, coffee or pressed cider!

Serve with your favorite Caramel Sauce!

Apple Brown Betty

“No matter what their age from the youngest to the oldest” everyone
in the Community of Jesus gathers together for Saturday morning beehive,
a time to busily work on everything that needs doing in the community that week.
Each is assigned a job he or she is capable of doing.

Last Saturday  while I was in the convent yard I heard excited shouts and
squeals of fun and laughter coming from the apple orchard.  Although we
still have not reached peak apple season we have an abundance of
drops each day and we never waste any of them. That day the nursery school
kids were having a contest to see who could gather the most.
The two sisters responsible for child care had cleverly come up with a way
for them to be useful while at the same time learn a lesson in good stewardship
of God’s gifts to us.

Their mission accomplished, the little wagon full of drops were drawn to
the convent kitchen where they were magically transformed into a
favorite old fashioned  dessert that everyone without exception enjoyed
at the coffee hour break…..that is EVERYONE  no matter what their age
from the youngest to the oldest!

Print Recipe
Votes: 2
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Apple Brown Betty
SERVINGS
4-6
CHANGE SERVING SIZE
COOK TIME
45minutes
PREP TIME
20minutes
READY IN
65minutes

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Butter a shallow 8” x 8” baking dish.
  2. Place half the bread cubes in the prepared baking dish. Mix the remaining cubes with 2 tablespoons of melted butter and set aside.
  3. Stir together the apples, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, water, orange juice, orange rind and the remaining 5 tablespoons of butter. Mix until sugar is dissolved. Pour over the bread cubes in the dish and then top with the reserved bread cubes.
  4. Bake in the pre-heated oven for 45 minutes covered with foil at 400 degrees Fahrenheit then uncovered 10 minutes or so until golden brown. Serve warm or cold.

Roasted Chicken with Citrus, Herbs and Olives

Current surveys show that Italian food still ranks highest in popularity on restaurant menus across the country. With so many other ethnic foods gaining interest in the food world this surprised me a little when I recently found it out. I know it is true in our convent (that’s why we have Italian night on Friday of every week) but didn’t expect it was on such a large scale. This being the case let’s consider some more Italian versions of  favorite meals and perhaps something other than provincial tomato sauce dishes  that usually come to mind when we think of Italian cooking.

This week I experimented with chicken using some very typical Italian ingredients with the exclusion of tomatoes.  I came up with a beautiful and flavorful Italian chicken featuring citrus fruit as well as figs, olives, garlic and herbs and seasonings all native to Italy.
Print Recipe
Votes: 0
Rating: 0
You:
Rate this recipe!
Roasted Chicken with Citrus, Herbs and Olives
SERVINGS
6people
CHANGE SERVING SIZE
people
COOK TIME
43mins
PREP TIME
15mins
READY IN
1hr (approx)

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. In a large roasting pan, season chicken with salt and pepper; drizzle with oil. Squeeze lemon and orange over chicken, then add fruit to pan. Add wine, orange juice, and thyme or oregano. Roast 25 minutes.
  3. Remove pan from oven; rotate chicken pieces if browning unevenly. Add olives and whole garlic cloves. Roast until a thermometer inserted in chicken breast (avoiding bone) registers 160 degrees Fahrenheit, about 15 minutes more.
  4. Transfer chicken and citrus to a platter.
  5. Place roasting pan over high heat, until sauce is reduced and thickened, about 3 minutes. Pour over chicken; serve.

Individual Apple Crisps

As I write this, it is snowing again. Wow,what a winter it has been, and continues to be. I begin to wonder if spring is truly going to come. But like any issue of faith, one just has to believe. Spring has always come, with its promise of new beginnings and life, and  it will be all the more special this year when it does.

Usually I would be starting to think of things like asparagus and lemon, lamb and baby beets–but it’s just a little too chilly still for the spring forerunners. I’m still thinking about hot stews and soups, lovely warm desserts like apple crisp in little ramekins with ice cream melting on it. So, to keep us warm through these last chilly days of winter, here is a recipe for orange-tinged mini apple crisps.

Print Recipe
Votes: 0
Rating: 0
You:
Rate this recipe!
Individual Apple Crisps
SERVINGS
6ramekins
CHANGE SERVING SIZE
ramekins
COOK TIME
PREP TIME
READY IN

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Butter 6 ramekins.
  3. In a medium bowl mix together flour, walnuts, 2 Tablespoons sugar, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and a pinch of salt.
  4. Pour butter over and mix together with a fork. Set aside.
  5. In a separate bowl combine apples, remaining 2 Tablespoons sugar and orange juice, tossing to coat.
  6. Divide among ramekins, top with flour mixture.
  7. Place ramekins on a baking sheet and bake until fruit is tender and topping is golden. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream if desired.

Orange Rolls

This year Palm Sunday was a bright day, and even though it was cold, it felt like a promise of things to come. Everything about this week points to Easter. As I write this, we are beginning the Triduum, the three holy days before Resurrection Sunday, and some of the most special services of the year. Often we celebrate Maundy Thursday with a meal of lamb, pita bread, bitter herbs (endive). Good Friday we usually have hot cross buns together as a community after the Lauds service, and then later that night, the convent has a “Lenten meal”: home made bread, cheese, honey, eggs. It’s amazing how food is so integral to our holiday gatherings. I love Easter breakfast — with egg dishes, french toast, fruit, and everyone’s favorite — orange rolls. We began making these several years ago in an effort to use up a generous donation of candied orange rind, and they were a hit — the citrus taste makes me think of spring!

Print Recipe
Votes: 0
Rating: 0
You:
Rate this recipe!
Orange Rolls
SERVINGS
CHANGE SERVING SIZE
COOK TIME
15-20mins.
PREP TIME
READY IN
2 1/2hours

Ingredients

Instructions

For roll dough:
  1. Boil 1 cup of water in saucepan and set off stove.
  2. Add butter and shortening and stir until melted.
  3. Add sugar and salt.
  4. Cool to lukewarm.
  5. In a large bowl put 1 cup of warm water, add yeast and stir to dissolve.
  6. Add butter – shortening mixture and eggs to yeast mixture and mix.
  7. Thoroughly mix in flour. This is a very soft dough.
  8. Cover and let stand 2 hours.
For filling:
  1. Place sugar and peel or rind in food processor, and mix for about 20 seconds.
  2. Roll dough out on flour covered surface to make a rectangle about 15″ by 26″.
  3. Spread the butter all over the dough, and then cover generously with the sugar mixture.
  4. Roll up rectangle like a jelly roll.
  5. Cut into 1 inch slices.
  6. Place rolls into greased pans (9″ round pans, or muffin tins, square pans, or rectangular.) You will have roughly 24 rolls.
  7. Let rise about 1/2 hour or until puffy. Bake at 375 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes, or until golden.
For glaze:
  1. Combine above and drizzle over rolls to glaze.