each fall we pick a day and head to the orchard. the one we love to frequent has a bit of everything, apples of all varieties, hay ride to the pumpkin patch, a few animals to feed, gorgeous barn, warm cider and apple cider donut wholes by the bag. we have not yet made the trek this year, but this weekend looks to be a beautiful one weather wise, perfect for a day at the orchard.
my mom was just here for a few days, her first visit since moving south to sunny florida. we miss having her here, but i am so very grateful she is willing and able to pick up and fly up to visit when she can. the whole 4 days she was here it did nothing but rain. it did not seem to bother anyone too much. it would have been nice to get outside a little bit more, but we enjoyed the togetherness inside playing games, drawing, and cooking. I remembered to ask my mom if she could recall her apple dumpling recipe while she was here. i am good at baking an apple pie, but apple dumplings are the memory of my childhood. for anyone who has never had one, it is simply 1 apple cut in half, stuffed with butter and sugar, then wrapped in pastry dough and baked with a brown sugar syrup til golden brown. a mini pie in itself, but made even easier since you are not slicing up those apples... the syrup thickens and gets sticky as it cools, giving the dough a crunchy outside layer. we serve them warm in a bowl with milk poured right on top. pure comfort, perfect for these colder,wetter fall days. my mom went out and dug up her 1967 cookbook from a box she had stored in our garage and found the exact recipe she has always used. i loved the cookbook. the pages all turning a bit yellow from age, the feel of the paper (not the glassy stuff a lot of cookbooks are nowadays) and the simple hand drawn illustrations with each recipe.
so vintage, and well i love vintage.
so on tuesday, while the little ones were at school (picture day!), my mom and i got a chance to bake together. i made my favorite crust recipe for the dough, she prepped the apples, and together we made a batch apple dumplings. they were so simple, and so good. just as i remembered them to be, but even more special with my mom here helping me make them. i scanned the page from her cookbook, to forever have the exact recipe from my childhood. perhaps one day taylor, kellen or casey will ask for it, and i will be ready.
my mom flew back yesterday, but we have the memory of her visit and look forward to the next one. thanks mom. we love you.
happy apple season everyone. xo.