Saturday, October 15, 2016

While we're on the subject of apples...

(which we were, a day or two ago) it's the perfect time for me to share a bunch of my favorite recipes using apples.  I've done this before, but not everyone looks around in the archives and -- and besides, I'm always trying new recipes and forgetting to post about them!

Maybe you just bought a large bag or box of apples and would like some new ways to use them.  Read on ...

I think I'll start with a main dish that I frequently make for our church potlucks.  I actually made this for the Sunday just past, but I have a busy weekend ahead and think I will make this dish again for this Sunday.  People love it and it's quite healthy,  not to mention very delicious.


1 package of chicken sausage (fully cooked type such as Al Fresco) -- in the sweet apple flavor
1 large sweet onion
1 large apple (Honeycrisp is the best!) or 2 smaller apples
1 tube garlic and herb polenta
Olive oil
Salt and pepper (optional)

Have a 9 x 13-inch baking dish ready and just add the ingredients as you prepare them.  Slice up the chicken sausages.  I slice each one lengthwise and then cut them into about 1/4-inch slices crosswise.  Peel the onion, cut it in half and cut each half into wedges.  (Or cut them smaller if your onion is really huge.)  Wash, core and slice the apples into wedges.  Don't bother to peel them.  Then slice your polenta.  I cut it in quarters lengthwise and then slice it between 1/4-inch and 1/2-inch thick.  Now drizzle some olive oil (at least a tablespoon, but it's up to you) over the ingredients in the baking dish.  Salt and pepper to taste if you like.  Stir everything together well.

Bake at 375º for 1 hour.

When I take this to our church potluck, I bake it in the morning, timing it to come out of the oven just before we leave the house.  I cover it with foil.   Then when we get to church I place it on an electric warming tray where it holds just fine until we are ready to eat a few hours later.

Next,  here is one of our favorite side dishes:


3 lbs. buttercup squash
3 apples
6 Tblsp. margarine (or use 4 Tblsp. oil)
2/3 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
1 1/2 Tblsp. flour
1 1/4 tsp. salt

Cut squash in halves; remove seeds and fibers. Peel and cut in slices 1/2-inch to 3/4-inch thick. Arrange the slices in a 13 x 9-inch pan.

Core apples but do not peel them. Cut in 1/2-inch to 3/4-inch slices and arrange them on top of squash.Mix remaining ingredients; sprinkle over top of apples and squash. Cover pan tightly with foil. Bake at 350º for about 1 hour or until squash is tender. Serves 6 to 8.

I've been making this recipe for over forty years. It’s nice with any autumn meal and would be a great side dish for Thanksgiving. It would also make a nice contribution to an autumn potluck.

 Next I have a smattering of apple salad recipes.

This Apple-Feta Tossed Salad 

Photo from Taste of Home
came from Taste of Home, I think.  An older issue.  I changed up the dressing recipe a lot.  And oh, those walnuts.  Do make those.  They make a great addition to any number of salads.

This recipe is a bit similar to the one above: Sweet and Sour Apple Salad
Photo and recipe both by Andrea at The Cottage Market

but it's enough different that I decided to share them both.  One thing I really like about this sweet and sour salad is that you shake the diced apples right in with the homemade dressing.  This serves very nicely to keep them from browning.  

Now a salad so simple that it's really not even a recipe.


Mayonnaise or plain yogurt (or some of each)
Maple syrup
Broken walnuts or pecans or sunflower seeds
Raisins or craisins  

You just dice up the amount of apples you like and mix in equal quantities of mayo (or plain yogurt) and maple syrup.  (For a couple of big apples, I would start with a tablespoon of each.)  Then stir in nuts or sunflower seeds and raisins or craisins, to taste.  The dried fruit can be left out if you prefer, but I would definitely add the nuts.

And then this salad, which could be served either as a salad or dessert:


4 to 6 large apples, cored and chopped (not peeled)
2 to 3 large Snickers bars, chopped into small pieces
Cool Whip or freshly whipped cream* to taste

Mix all together; serve and enjoy!

*  I have not tried this using freshly whipped cream; I imagine it would break down and become runny if allowed to set for too long.  If you choose to try it, be sure to stabilize the whipped cream by adding powdered sugar, and serve the salad immediately after preparing.
So we will segue into desserts with two of my favorites:
Apple Cranberry Crisp 
Apple Crisp Pizza.  
Photo from Taste of Home

I've already made this once this fall, but it won't be the last time.  Delicious.  Absolutely delicious.  This is a Taste of Home recipe and one that I've always been thankful that I clipped.

Not an apple recipe as such, but a dip for apple slices, this Fall Apple Dip 
Photo by Taste of Home

makes a great snack or a dessert.  It always goes over well.

And lastly, just a couple of apple tips, if you will.  This helpful apple hint is well worth knowing about, great for packing apple slices in lunches.

And then this apple pie spice blend is SO convenient to have on hand.  You'll be glad you took a few minutes to stir this up!


1/2 cup cinnamon
1 Tblsp. nutmeg
1 Tblsp. allspice
1 tsp. ground cloves
1/2 tsp. ground ginger

Blend ingredients. Store in a tightly covered container -- I use an old International Coffee® tin. Use along with sugar in apple pie, applesauce, baked apples, etc. Use 1 1/4 tsp. for each 6 cups of sliced apples. You may find that cookie or muffin recipes call for apple pie spice as well; it’s a convenient blend to keep on hand in your pantry.

Hope these ideas are useful to some of my readers who enjoy cooking and baking!  They are tried and true! 


  1. Really? What a great tip! And since I usually have that juice on hand, I hope to remember it. I do not like apple slices to go brown. Should work for pies or salads or whateverc, right?

    So many delicious recipes...think I'll go with the simple apple salad for today. May even for breakfast as just reading this is making me hungry.

    1. I would think that tip should work for any use with apple slices, Vee. I've only tried it with apple slices for snacks, but I don't see why it shouldn't work for any other usage of them.

      Hope you enjoyed the simple apple salad recipe if you tried it. It's so quick and easy to stir up at the last minute.

  2. OOH, all these apple recipe are making me hungry! I don't have any apples in the house at this moment, although they are on my grocery list. I think the apple feta salad is at the top, and maybe next, the apple dip, yum! And what a great tip about the juice with apples, thanks for the link to that too! Hope you are having a lovely weekend :) We are to get another storm here this afternoon, so watching the weather cautiously here. Hugs to you today!

    1. Oh, I hope you enjoy the recipes that you try, Marilyn. We enjoy apples so many ways in the fall.

      We did have a lovely weekend -- spent Friday night and Saturday at a couples' retreat in a beautiful area of our state. Such a refreshing, encouraging time! I hope to blog about it later this week!


Thanks so much for stopping by to visit my kitchen table! I love company here in my kitchen, so be sure to leave a comment so I'll know you've visited! I'll answer your questions and comments here on the blog unless you request otherwise.