October 20, 2011

Appley Dappley

I have to tell ya, for a girl who lived on a Pacific island for the first half of her life, I’m STILL adjusting to the fact that apples growing on trees is a phenomenon that doesn’t only exist in books! Guavas, papayas, bananas and coconuts – those I can accept as legit tree-growing fruit. Apples? PEARS? Cherries? Seeing these guys not just in trees, but in whole ORCHARDS, totally blows my mind, it really does.

For my daughter, the apple is easily her favorite fruit. Apple was her first word! AP-PUL. AP-PUL. She went around saying it all day long. I think it became her favorite fruit because she realized she could say it, and then we’d get all excited and go get her an apple. Public service announcement: apples enhance lung function. I don’t think there is a body part that apples don’t enhance, actually!

So how you do like your apples? In pies or muffins or cakes? Do you like them in PANDOWDIES, BETTIES, BUCKLES, SLUMPS or GRUNTS? Or do you prefer your apples in cobblers or crumbles? My husband thinks I’m making all of this up, but oh no kids, I assure you I am not. (Note: each link will take you to an actual recipe.)

And here’s another oddly named (charmingly eccentric?) one for you try – this recipe shown below is called Apple Dappy and it’s from ‘Cooking with Apples & Pears’ by Laura Washburn.

Apple Dappy

This is a traditional British dessert from the West Country, little known, but highly deserving of a larger audience.


1 lb. tart apples, such as Granny Smith, peeled, cored, and diced
freshly squeezed juice of 1/2 a lemon
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon unsalted butter

For the Pastry:

1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
a pinch of fine sea salt
1/2 stick unsalted butter
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 tablespoons clotted cream or heavy cream, plus extra to serve
1/2 cup milk
sugar, for sprinkling
a small square or circular baking pan lined with baking parchment and lightly buttered.

To Make:

Put the apples in a saucepan with the lemon juice, sugar, and butter and cook, uncovered, over medium heat until softened. Remove from heat and set aside.

Preheat oven to 425 F.

In a food processor, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt and pulse a few times to blend. Add the butter and sugar and pulse until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Leave the motor on and add the cream and half the milk. The dough should be soft and sticky. If it is too stiff, add the remaining milk.

Transfer the dough to a floured surface. You need to roll it out to a 8 x 12 inch rectangle and it should be almost exactly that, not more.

Spread the cooled apple mixture over the dough and roll up from a long end, like a jelly roll. Mark 7 equal pieces on the roll, then cut it into slices with a sharp knife. Arrange the slices, cut-side-up in the baking pan, with one in the center and the others around it. They should not actually touch as the dough will expand during baking.

Sprinkle generously with sugar and bake in the preheated oven until puffed and golden, about 20-25 minutes. Remove from the oven, let cool slightly, then serve warm with clotted cream.

Serves 7.

I had never heard of Beatrix Potter’s ‘Appley Dappley’s Nursery Rhymes’ until I purchased the entire Potter set at Costco a couple years ago. It is SO DARN CUTE!
‘Appley Dappley, a little brown mouse, goes to the cupboard in somebody’s house. In somebody’s cupboard there’s everything nice, cake, cheese, jam, biscuits, – all charming for mice!'
Sooooooo, WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE APPLE TREAT? And who wants to try the grunt recipe? Or the apple dappy? (I do.)


  1. Eep! I *must* go find a copy of that nursery rhyme book!! I love apple pie, apple fritters (though I rarely eat them), apple crisp, fresh apples, and apple butter... though the list could go on and on.

  2. Oh Michelle you will love it! Also Beatrix's 'Cecily Parsley's Nursery Rhymes' those are fun as well! ~Melissa

  3. I tried the Apple Grunt recipe this weekend, because a) with a name like that, I couldn't resist and b) I was looking for a way to use up some leftover buttermilk. Turns out it was really easy and really good!

  4. You are the COOLEST! Fantastic! I made an apple crisp. Grunts and slumps soon to follow! ~Melissa