3 Simple apple dishes

Baked apples are filled with maple syrup, walnuts, Baked apples are filled with maple syrup, walnuts, oats and cinnamon. (October 2013) Photo Credit: Marge Perry

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TIP Granny Smith, Golden Delicious, Honeycrisp and Pink Lady are all great cooking varieties of apples.

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BAKED APPLES WITH MAPLE OATMEAL TOPPING

1/4 cup walnuts, chopped

1/4 cup old-fashioned rolled oats

1/4 cup maple syrup

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1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

4 apples

3 tablespoons cold butter, cut into bits

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat an 8-by-8-inch baking dish with cooking spray.

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2. Combine nuts, oats, syrup, salt and cinnamon in a bowl.

3. Peel top third of each apple. Using a melon baller or paring knife, cut out core, taking care to leave a "floor" about 1/4-inch thick. Spoon nut mixture in the center of each apple; dot with butter and bake until apple is very tender, about 50 minutes.

4. To serve, spoon pan juices over apples.

Makes 4 servings.

Nutritional analysis for each serving 290 calories, 2 g protein, 43 g carbohydrates, 5 g fiber, 14 g fat, 6 g saturated fat, 151 mg sodium

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BRAISED SAUSAGE, APPLES AND CABBAGE

8 ounces wide egg noodles

1 tablespoon butter

1 tablespoon chopped parsley

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1 tablespoon canola oil

12 ounces turkey kielbasa, cut into 1/2-inch chunks

2 Granny Smith apples, chopped into 1/2-inch pieces

6 cups thinly sliced red cabbage (about 1 1/2 pounds)

1/2 cup apple juice

1/4 cup low-sodium chicken broth (or water)

1 tablespoon brown sugar

1 tablespoon apple-cider vinegar

1. Cook noodles in plenty of lightly salted boiling water according to package directions. Drain and toss with butter and parsley.

2. Meanwhile, heat oil in large, nonstick skillet or Dutch oven over medium high. Add sausage and cook 2 minutes, until lightly browned on undersides; turn and add apples; cook 3 minutes, until apples are lightly browned.

3. Add cabbage, apple juice, broth, brown sugar and vinegar and bring to a boil; cover, reduce heat and simmer until cabbage is soft, 16 to 18 minutes.

Makes 4 servings.

Nutritional analysis for each serving 454 calories, 19 g protein, 70 g carbohydrates, 6g fiber, 12 g fat, 3 g saturated fat, 779 mg sodium

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APPLE-CRANBERRY MUFFINS

2 large eggs

1 (6-ounce) container nonfat plain Greek yogurt

1/3 cup canola oil

1/2 cup skim milk

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 cups flour

1/2 cup brown sugar plus

1 tablespoon, divided

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 apples, chopped into 1/3-inch pieces (about 2 cups)

1/2 cup dried cranberries

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Coat 12 muffin cups with oil or cooking spray.

2. Lightly beat the eggs in a large bowl; stir in the yogurt, canola oil, milk and vanilla.

3. In second bowl, combine flour, 1/2 cup sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt; stir well. Add the liquid ingredients; stir just until well combined. Mix in apples and cranberries. Spoon into muffin cups, sprinkle with the remaining 1 tablespoon brown sugar, and bake 20 minutes, or until golden on top and a toothpick stuck in the center comes out clean.

Makes 12 servings.

Nutritional analysis for each serving 238 calories, 5 g protein, 39 g carbohydrates, 2 g fiber, 7 g fat, 1 g saturated fat, 159 mg sodium

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