Here's a case of things not turning out quite as planned.
Last weekend on our trip to the farmers market I bought three pounds of apples. Apples are in plentiful supply, even with most of the farmers markets closed for the season.
My plan was to make the kind of apple torte we used to have for dinner when I was an exchange student in Switzerland. This was centuries ago, of course. But I still have vivid memories of my host mother--Tante Marie--rolling dough onto a sheet pan and covering it with whatever fruit was in season at the moment--apricots, plums, peaches, apples--adding some kind of custard and baking it in the oven.
The torte--if that's what you want to call it--seemed a little like dessert for dinner: not too sugary, with the fruit, the eggs and the soft crust postitioned somewhere between sweet and savory and bringing plenty of wholesome nutrition to the table. It was a perfect meal as far as I was concerned, simple yet satisfying. So I had a vision of recreating that torte with apples, serving it with our homegrown salad and calling that our Dark Days meal for the week.
Except I was not able to find the recipe. Okay, I didn't spend that much time looking. My sister, who lived many years in the German-speaking part of Europe, brought over a couple of her German pastry cookbooks. There were all kinds of cakes and tortes, but nothing hitting the mark. By the end of the day, I was desperate for something to make with apples and landed on this simple recipe in Joy of Cooking.
It calls for layering sliced apples with almost-cooked sweet potatoes (from our CSA box), along with brown sugar, raisins and pecans. Add some apple cider and bake in the oven at 350 degree for about 30 minutes. It didn't sound like much, and it turned out to be about how it sounded. That's what you see in the picture, along with a homegrown salad and a biscuit made with fresh buttermilk and smeared with the tomato jelly we made from our garden.
It occurs to me now that although I like very much the idea of making dinner out of apples, I am woefully short on apple know-how. So I am broadcasting this appeal: If you know of any great ideas for apples entrees--especially if you know how to make the torte I described above--please do send along your suggestions.