Monday, November 23, 2009

Holiday Sides

I received a sample of Musselman's applesauce to come up with some recipes utilizing it in side dishes one might have this time of year. I thought and thought... then i went into my kitchen :)


After the success of the Spirited Cranberry Sauce I made last year, I decided to put a spin on this for an appetizer I had in mind. I kept the sherry-soaked dried apricots, but used apple cider and spices when making the sauce. To finish is off, I folded in some applesauce and adjusted the sweetness. While this could easily be used as is, I thought it would make a great topper for some baked brie!


Spirited Cran-Apple-Apricot Sauce
Adapted from Cooking Light



1/2c thin sliced apricots
1/4c sherry
3/4c apple cider
1 cinnamon stick
1t vanilla
3-4T honey (or agave, brown sugar, or your desired sweetener)
1 package cranberries
1/2c Musselman's Natural Applesauce

Place apricots and sherry in a small bowl and let sit overnight.

Combine apricots and sherry, cider, cinnamon stick, vanilla and cranberries in a medium pot. Cook over med-low heat until thickened and desired consistency. Add 3T sweetener and applesauce, mix to incorporate, then taste and adjust to your desired level of sweetness. With the amounts I used, it was pretty tart but went perfectly with the brie :)

Don't worry, yours will look better (I didn't have a full wheel of brie)

Baked Brie w/Spirited Cran-Apple-Apricot Sauce
inspiried by The Kitch'n

1 wheel of brie
1/2-3/4c spirited cran-apple-apricot sauce
chopped walnuts or pecans, if desired

Preheat oven to 350. Cut top rind off of brie. Place in a small baking dish. Top with cranberry sauce (keep a small border). Bake for 12-15min, until heated through and cheese is bubbly. Serve in dish or transfer (carefully) to a serving platter. Serve with crackers.



I also used the applesauce to create an Acorn Apple Soup. Seasoned with a flurry (curry?) of spices, this was a delicious, light soup that would be a good addition to any meal!



Acorn Apple Soup
Serves 2



Depending on what you're in the mood for, this soup can be subtly spiced or more robust. Adjust to you're own tastebuds! The amounts listed below come out somewhere in the middle :)

1 acorn squash, cut in half and seeded
1/2t cinnamon
1/2t curry powder
1/6t cardamom
1/6t coriander
1/2c Musselman's Natural Applesauce (or homemade)
apple cider
1/2 apple, diced small
finely grated gruyere

Preheat oven to 425. Place squash on baking sheet and drizzle with EVOO. Sprinkle spices, then bake until squash is tender (time will depend on the size). Remove from oven.

While squash is roasting, prepare garnishes (if desired). Saute diced apple in a little butter or oil and a blend of the seasonings used to season the squash (I didn't measure, just shook some on). Set aside.

To make gruyere crisps, heat a nonstick pan to med heat. Add gruyere in small disc shapes (~1-2t per circle) and cook until melty. Using a spatula, carefully flip over discs and cook until lightly browned. Depending on how hot your pan is, this can go pretty quickly. Remove to a plate lined with a paper towel. I had ~ 1/3c grated gruyere and got 10 crisps.

Once cool, scoop out squash into a blender (I used an immersion blender). Add applesauce and puree. Add enough apple cider until it reaches your desired consistency. Transfer to serving bowls and top with diced apples and gruyere crisps right before serving.


If you're looking for a sweet ending, the applesauce also works well in this Apple Cake, even if it wasn't vegan ;) (I had some buttermilk handy!)



Sorry for the monster post, but I hope everyone has a fabulous Thanksgiving!!

41 comments:

VeggieGirl said...

Fabulous sauces, soup, and cake!

Do NOT apologize!! Love your posts :)

Have a fantastic Thanksgiving!

Tyler said...

i LOVE baked brie!!! maybe a little too much....

also, you acorn squash sound looks divine! i never would have thought of putting applesauce in it...

Megan said...

All of these dishes look fabulous! Hope you have a great Thanksgiving!

HangryPants said...

Wow you did a great job! The apple sauce in the soup is pretty cool!

Erica said...

WOW- they all look good. But I'd most like to try the cran apple sauce on the baked brie. I bet this would be a HUGE hit!

Kelly said...

I love all the different variations. Thanks to you I am now hooked on homemade apple sauce although I do always buy the natural variety for baking. I bet it would also be delicious in a cauliflower puree. I usually use baked apples, but this would be good in a pinch.

Lauren said...

I love the monster post!! A few delicious recipes in one post is always welcome :)

♥peachkins♥ said...

everything looks good!

lesley lifting life said...

Mmm ... I especially like the looks of the acorn apple soup!

Pam said...

I am loving every single recipe, especially the sauce with brie. Mmmm good.

Sophia said...

monster post, I love! More from you, the better!
If these were my holiday sides...I'll totally forget about the turkey!

Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) said...

Acorn Apple Soup looks awesome with no onion or garlic. LOVE THAT.

Esi said...

You get samples left and right! Nice way to use them up.

Monica said...

The cake turned out great! But that soup looks delicious - definitely going to give that a try. And baked brie - omg, one of my favorites.

Joanne said...

Don't ever apologize for all of these great recipes! I love baked brie. Ridiculously much. This seems like the perfect topping.

Krista said...

Baked brie sounds wonderful as does the apple cake!

Sarah said...

Cranberry sauce is one of my favorite favorite parts of this time of year. I think it's a shame so many people just associate that jelly stuff with Thanksgiving day. I just made some sauce myself with just some sugar, maple syrup, and lemon juice. I like the sound of the complexity of yours though.

Elina said...

Ha, monster post! I'm a queen of those... people probably fall asleep by the end (if they get there!) ;)
Yummy eats. I'm eyeing the apple cake :D

KefirGirl said...

that squash/apple soup looks positively decadent!

Sagan said...

Baked brie is SUPER good. I love your idea for this cranberry sauce! And the soup is really interesting. SmarterFitter has some delicious recipes so I bet that applecake would be very tasty.

Michelle said...

Not a monster post at all!! I'm loving how everything looks, especially that apple cake!!! I'd love to have a bite of that. *drool* Hope you have an amazing Thanksgiving holiday dear!!

Jess said...

Wow those are really creative uses of applesauce. Yum!

Nicole Chow - HealthyChow.com said...

Your recipes are so wonderful! Don't ever be sorry for posting! You inspire us with your creativity and your skill. Have a fantastic Thanksgiving!

Rosiecat said...

I think I'll just take that fruity sauce into a closet with a spoon. When I come out, there will be no evidence that it ever existed! ;-) Happy Thanksgiving, Shannon.

biz319 said...

Anything with Brie in it, I am in!

HAPPY THANKSGIVING SHANNON!

Kelly said...

Acorn apple soup yummmm, that sound so good!

Kerstin said...

I'm completely stuffed, but now I'm craving baked brie! Love all your creations!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Hannah said...

What delicious compliments to what I'm sure was a fantastic meal! Hope you had a very Happy Thanksgiving. :)

pigpigscorner said...

wow everything sounds great! I want that baked brie!

Emily said...

That baked brie + cranberry sauce looks amazing! Brie is one of my fave cheese, and I think this would be a great Christmas appetizer!

Elra said...

Hope your Thanksgiving was wonderful Shannon. Your side dishes look so good.

Ricki said...

Everything looks spectacular! I've got to make that soup. And hope your Thanksgiving was fantastic! :)

Annie said...

Great ideas and so inventive! I hope you enjoyed the holiday :)

GF Gidget said...

Yum! That soup and cake sound amazing!

5 Star Foodie said...

Such creative uses of the apple sauce! Love all the recipes! Hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving!

stephchows said...

ok you did some serious ideas with that apple sauce!!! great job!

Maria said...

I am loving that soup and who can say no to brie:)

Cate O'Malley said...

Love, love, love baked brie! So much reward for so little effort.

Velva said...

Wow! You did really well with your applesauce challenge. Loved the cake...Also, the topping for the brie. Really nice creative ideas. Thanks for sharing.

Chef Fresco said...

That acorn apple soup looks delicious!

comfycook said...

Acorn squash soup - an addition to my soup collection. Thanks for making this to inspire the rest of us.

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