Good day everyone! I hope you are doing well. We have been having some funny weather lately. It's in the 30's one day and then single digits the next. I don't know about you, but....
Since that will take a while, I'll just tell you a bit about our January keeper's meeting.
Again....I forgot to snap some pictures! I am so bad at remembering to do that. Next time, though.
We had a wonderful meeting. There were around 15 of us. That includes 2 husbands! My lovely friend Marianne showed us how to cook on a wood cook stove. I had a chicken stew and biscuits all made ahead, while Marianne brought a very tasty apple pie that she cooked in the oven of our cook stove.
I told the ladies that I didn't think I'd make a very good pioneer woman. I didn't like feeling like a slave to the cook stove. That was the feeling I got when I was making the chicken stew and biscuits that day. I made everything from scratch. It took me a bit to figure out where the hottest spots were on the stove top....boil, simmer, warm. If you've never done it before, it really is a learning experience. I started everything at about 10 am, and finally finished around 4 pm. That's a whole day and only 1 meal! I'm sure with time I'd get better at it and it wouldn't take so long. Can you just imagine what it was like when that was the only way to cook?
Some of the women at our meeting could remember when they were young and that was how their life was. My mom said it was very difficult, because it wasn't just the meals that got done on the cook stove...soap was made on the stove, canning got done on it, boiling water for laundry and baths if you didn't have the reservoir. Winters wouldn't have been so bad, but can you imagine having to sweat over that stove in the summer heat?
It really makes me appreciate that I have a choice.
Marianne brought a book with her that was a great resource for anyone interested in wood stove cooking. You can find it here.
It's a wonderful book with lots of pictures and recipes.
At the end of the evening we all made our own "Apple Blossoms" to take home and cook.
Mmmm! Don't worry, I'm leaving you with the recipe...
4 apples peeled and cored. (I like to use Cortlands)
4 c. flour, plus more for dusting
1 tsp. salt
1 3/4 c. shortening
1 lg. egg, lightly beaten
1 Tbsp. vinegar
1/2 c. ice cold water
1/2 c. brown sugar
1/4 cup butter, softened
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
Combine sugar, butter & cinnamon, then stuff inside apple. If you like you can add some golden raisins, chopped walnuts or craisins to this mixture, as well.
Roll out pie crust into small circles...6-8" depending on size of apple. You only want enough crust to wrap around, covering each individual apple without having too much extra.
You can brush the outside of the crust with and egg wash if you wish to give it a nice golden look.
Bake the apples at 350* for 45-60 min. It really depends on the size of the apple and how well done you like it to be. I don't like mine too mushy.
Once it's done, pull it out of the oven and let it sit for 5 or 10 min. before eating. It's very hot! Enjoy it with a nice scoop of ice cream or this wonderful caramel sauce...
1 c. brown sugar
1/4 c. flour
Mix well and place in saucepan.
Add and bring to boil....
1/4 tsp. salt
2 c. water
1 tsp. vanilla
Turn off and let sit until thick and warm. Now pour it over your apple blossom and you are in heaven!!
This is so good, but I will warn you....
They can be addicting!
I wonder how my keepers enjoyed theirs? I did get the chance to talk to Marianne, and she and her husband really loved them.
They are a nice treat on a cold night, with a side of ice cream and a cup of hot cocoa. (smile)
It's so good to visit with all of you. I do hope you are staying warm. Thank you for taking the time to stop by.