Apple Pandowdy

This week we continue our journey through “1000 Foods To Eat Before You Die”, we are still in America and we are trying out an old American treat call the Apple Pandowdy. This apple dessert was very popular in the colonial period and it happened to be one of the first ladies Abigail Adams, the wife of John Adams, favorite dessert.

This dessert has seen a lot of changes over the years from when it was first introduced and the interesting name pan-dowdy came about because it was so plain or some say because the crust has been cut-up or dowdy during baking. Whichever the reason the pan-dowdy is basically fruit baked under a crust similar to a pie but the bits and pieces of the crust  has been cut-up to be submerged into the fruit filling liquid. In the eighteenth-century this dessert would take all night as it cooked in the embers of the dying fire. Thankfully it doesn’t take that long anymore to bake a really interesting dessert.

Apple Pan-Dowdy

 

I was lazy on this one and didn’t make a crust, I used a frozen pie crust and broke it up over the filling, though next time I should try the roll-out pie dough.

This is a dessert I will have to make again because I over cooked it so it came out a little dry when it should have some juice to it. Other than that it was really good.

Now next week I will make a handmade crust even though I’ve never made one, but its for an apple pie that’s next on the list. So come back and check it out.

Apple Pandowdy

Ingredients
  

  • 5 large Baking apples I used Pink Lady's
  • ½ cup Sugar
  • 1 tsp Cinnamon
  • ½ tsp Freshly ground Nutmeg
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • ½ cup Molasses
  • 3 tbsp Melted Butter
  • ¼ cup Water

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven at 400
  • Core, peel and slice the apples and sprinkle with lemon juice to keep from browning.
    Mix the apple slices with the sugar and spices
  • Whisk together the molasses, butter and water
  • Place a crust on the bottom of your skillet place apples on top and pour the molasses mixture over the top
  • Place the top crust that has been torn on top
  • Place in oven and bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and dowdy the crust (pushing the crust down into the apples)
  • Reduce heat to 325 and bake for an hour
  • Serve with whip cream



 

Alinea, Ambrosia and The Hot Brown

We are starting our journey through the “1000 foods to eat before you die” book and our first stop is going to be right in the American/Canadian region and the top two to begin with was the restaurant Alinea named one of the best molecular gastronomy restaurants located in Chicago. Chef Grant Achatz is the man behind this top restaurant which offers up food that looks both delicious and funky fun.

This is one of those places I would visit for a very special occasion and of course have the money saved up for the bill (smile). They do have a cookbook out and I hadn’t plan on getting it but I think I will just have to add it to my collection this coming pay period. Since I don’t know when or if I will ever get to Chicago to try this little place first hand, I did send an email to see if they would do a Triple D kind of special and overnight me a meal, so we shall see what they say.

Next up in this journey was a dish called Ambrosia which came about in the 1800’s and it was said to be what the Ancient Greek gods ate for immortality. The original recipe only called for navel oranges, coconut, and sugar. It was not like it has evolved into this crazy concoction of oranges, pineapple, marshmallows, whip cream or even mayonnaise, “ugh”. 

I finally found a recipe that was as close to the original that I found from one of my cookbooks I have on hand, “The Gone With the Wind cookbook” as well as the e-book “Dixie Cookery”. I did make a minor change on my part because I couldn’t find fresh coconut or sherry flavoring, so I used real sherry and canned coconut, which meant no need for sugar. 

For our Saturday date night meal we made the Hot Brown Sandwich, made famous in 1920 at the Brown Hotel by Chef Fred Schmidt, who was looking for something different to serve the guests for the dinner dance. This was a nice filling sandwich and pretty easy to make, so we both liked this one and we will be making this one again.

1000 Foods

One of the greatest gifts I received this year for my birthday was a book and not just any book, this book titled 1000 Foods To Eat Before You Die by Mimi Sheraton. This book is a food lovers dream bible, it covers pretty much every country’s food passion to create a straight-up culinary journey of the senses. The book is broken down into eighteen different regions and cultures. Under each ingredient, food or even restaurant there is a way to get it to you, through a website, a physical address, a phone number and in some cases theres even a cookbook listed oh and sometimes a recipe for you to try.
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To say I was excited when I received this book was an understatement, I was over the moon excited especially as I started flipping through the pages and reading various paragraphs, this book will become my top reference book to use over and over again. I did realize that a few of the items I’ve already had, but I will now look for the best of the best from each category and try them again.

This book will become dogeared and marked up with highlights and notes and I will have to share it with you guys.

 

I will be starting this journey off right here in the United States and Canada, so make sure you stay tuned so you can see what I’m going to eat and what I’ll be learning about for the rest of this year.