From the Farm: Barrie has had a mini-vacation — sort of. I have had laryngitis all week. It sure is frustrating not being able to communicate by speaking. He couldn’t hear me or read lips so I had to resort to note writing.
Seed catalogs are looking pretty worn. The photos make everything look so good, especially in these dreary months of winter. We leaf through those like kids with a Sears catalog at Christmas. We make list upon revised list until we finalize it to place orders for the season.
We can’t do much outside at the moment but there sure is plenty that can be done inside the workshop. Barrie is repairing equipment. He currently is working on our small Farmall tractor, affectionately known as “the little A.” It comes in handy for a multitude of chores around the farm and it’s just the right size for me to drive. I don’t feel comfortable handling the larger tractors plus Barrie says I wreak enough havoc with small machinery. I may have — maybe once or twice — “mulched” his baby trees.
We are enjoying all the stored winter squash, fruits and veggies from last year. As I have mentioned before, this is the time of resting a little and using the products I canned and/or froze during the summer and fall.
I don’t know about you but I love tart, juicy apples. Granny Smith, Winesap and other crisp, tart apples are great to cook with. They have outstanding flavor and hold up well when cooked. Applesauce, apple butter, apple pie and more taste better to me when made with these.
This week’s recipe is a favorite of mine. This dish isn’t as intimidating as one might think. Kids can help with the assembly of these as well.
Old Fashioned Apple Dumplings
1 double pie crust (your recipe or use refrigerated pre-made)
6 large Granny Smith apples, peeled and cored.
1 stick butter, cut into 8 pieces, plus more to grease pan
3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon nutmeg
3 cups water
2 cups granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Butter a 9- by 13-inch baking pan or casserole dish.
Roll out pie crust on lightly floured surface. Cut pastry into 6 squares. Place an apple on each square with cored opening facing up. Place piece of butter inside each apple. (Keep 2 extra pieces for sauce.)
Divide brown sugar between each apple. Push some into apple opening and sprinkle rest around apple. Sprinkle cinnamon, nutmeg and a little salt over apples.
Dampen fingers with water. Pull opposite corners of pastry up over each apple and pinch together. Repeat with other two corners, then pinch openings together to seal apple inside.
Place apples in buttered pan. In saucepan, combine water, granulated sugar, vanilla and remaining butter. Bring to a boil on medium heat. Boil until sugar is dissolved (about 5 minutes).
Pour carefully over dumplings and bake for 50 to 60 minutes. Serve with sauce drizzled over top.
The market will be opening the first Saturday in April this year. Check this column for more announcements as that day approaches. If you are interested in becoming a member of our market for 2012, contact Gary Taylor at (859) 332-2539. The Boyle County Farmers Market is located at Boyle County Fairgrounds. The market manager is Gary Taylor of Knobview Farms.