Apple Dumplings

Up until Thanksgiving we have a Farmer’s Market 2x/week at a nearby park.  Different vendors and farmers from Lancaster County, PA and elsewhere come bringing fresh seasonal produce and goodies.  Half of the vendors are Amish farmers (they are more of the modern group where they use electricity and drive cars).  I’m always impressed by their dedication driving 4 hours roundtrip driving mostly from the Lancaster area to Philadelphia!

  Aside from the seasonal produce my favorite has to be the Amish Apple Dumplings!!  You know that they didn’t skimp on the lard in the dough because when you bite into the dough it melts in your mouth.  As delectable as these dumplings are, they are also pricey and not too good for your waist line…  I’ve been craving for these dumplings so I decided to make them.  I found this recipe and decided to try it. 

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  • 2 cups water
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 teaspoon  baking powder
  • 3/4 cup  shortening (I used organic shortening)
  • 1/2 cup plus a little more  milk
  • 6 baking apples (I used Honey Crisps)
  • extra sugar, cinnamon and some butter

  • Combine 1st 4 ingredients for the syrup-mix, bring to a boil over medium-high heat.  Turn it down to medium heat and cook 5 minutes, then remove from heat.

  • Cut shortening into flour (I usually chill the shortening so that it’s easy to handle) and baking powder; add 1/2 cup of milk all at once, stir until flour is moistened.  If the dough is still dry add a little more milk until the dough is not sticky.

  • On floured surface roll the dough into squares (I divided the dough into 3 parts and rolled it).

  • Core & peel 6 apples; if you don’t have an apple corer just cut the apples into halves, core them and peel the skin.

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  • Place an apple (if you cut the apples into halves just put them back together for this process) on top of the dough squares. Sprinkle generously with additional sugar and cinnamon. Dot with butter.

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  • Moisten edges of pastry.

  • Bring corners to center and pinch edges together.

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I tried this shape first
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Then decided I like this shape better

  • Place 1 inch apart in ungreased 9 x 13 pan.

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  • Pour syrup over dumplings.

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  • Bake 375 degrees for 35-40 minutes.

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  • To serve, scoop some of the syrup and drizzle over warm apple dumpling, pour some milk over the dumpling (to follow in the tradition of the Pennsylvania Dutch), and/or with a scoop of ice-cream!

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My opinion: Delicious!! Yum!! My family was raving about this as they were eating! This version is less sweet and has crispier crust than the Farmer’s Market kind, but I think it tastes equally delicious and I bet it’s a bit healthier (just a bit…).   Of course, this will take longer compared to using the ready made pie crust, but I think the effort is well rewarded! 

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