It is very long overdue, but it seems that supermarkets are in fact starting to cotton on to the fact that a lot of us don’t worry about a wonky carrot or dented potato, and these sorts of vegetables and fruits are starting to become more readily available across the board. I do generally tend to shop at Lidl for fruit and vegetables, because there seems to be a natural inclusion of random and slightly non-uniform fruit & veg which I find refreshing. However, I bought the most gorgeous looking apples from Waitrose the other day: labeled as “weather damaged”, these were a deep deep fairytale red, and I had to have them. I wasn’t disappointed- delicious to eat, but when I baked them, that’s when they really came into their own: the beautiful colour on slicing through the apple was just lovely; the heat creating a gentle ombre as the pink skin had bled into the pale fruit.
Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius
4-5 apples, dependent on size. Mine were medium sized, but if you’re using large ones, 4 will do
1 cup walnuts, chopped
½ cup raisins or sultanas
50g salted butter
50g cream cheese
½ tsp cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp maple syrup
1 tbsp soft brown sugar
1 tbsp demerara sugar
Using a very long, pointed sharp knife, core the apples, not just removing the core, but making a good sized hole in the top of each apple, so that you have enough space to squidge the stuffing in later.
Place the apples upright in an oven proof dish: ensure they are snug.
Mix the other ingredients together- except the demerara sugar, and stuff each apple well. Sprinkle the demerara sugar over the apples, and bake in a preheated oven for 40 minutes. Allow to sit in a warm place for 10 minutes before serving with cream or ice cream.