Rich, Creamy Baked Apples with Mughlai Flavours
Baked apples prepared in a rich, creamy sauce fragrant with Eastern spices make a cosy, satisfying dessert. This is a rich, decadent treat that’s easy to prep in advance to serve a crowd.
During the cooler months there are times when you simply can’t help but crave a decadent treat of a dessert. When that happens, I gravitate towards the rich, satisfying flavours of baked apples.
Despite the creamy richness of this dessert, it also contains its fair share of fibre and nutrition. So, it’s easy to make an excuse for occasional indulgence!
Apples, dried apricots, and almonds come together with cream and sugar to create a rich stuffing and creamy sauce that’s oh-so satisfying. Dried apricots help to balance out the sweetness, while almonds thicken and enrich the sauce. The entire dish is perfumed with cardamom and ginger — spices that satisfy body and soul.
Almonds, A Healthy Addition
If you’re watching your health, the 100 grams of almonds in this baked apple recipe may concern you. However, it really shouldn’t. Almonds are incredibly nutritious. In fact, they’re a great source of protein, magnesium, vitamin E, and manganese.
Moreover, almonds are a wonderful source of healthy antioxidants. Scientific studies suggest that the antioxidants in almonds significantly reduce oxidative stress — which helps keep you youthful and healthy.
In addition, the healthy fats, proteins, and magnesium in almonds helps the body regulate blood sugar. Magnesium, in particular, has been shown to have a positive impact on blood sugar, and it’s a nutrient that many people don’t get enough of in their diets.
So, adding almonds to the equation does boost the calorie count. However, the almonds also add a tremendous amount of healthy nutrition to this dish.
Rich, creamy baked apples are still a treat — rather than an every day dessert. However, they’re not entirely unhealthy!
Which Apples Should I Use?
When I was growing up on the Eastern Shore of Maryland, our local farmers grew several large, heirloom apple varieties that were unusually good for baking. If you’re fortunate enough to live in a region that has terrific farmers markets, ask your local growers for suggestions. You may be surprised to discover some unusually delicious (but less common) apple varieties.
Nowadays, living in a big city, I generally buy my apples at the supermarket, where the choice is a bit more limited. In terms of standard supermarket apples, my personal favourites for baking are Granny Smith. They’re tart, crisp, and hold up beautifully in the oven. However, there are a few other varieties that are also excellent for baking.
- Honeycrisp, and
- Pink Lady
About the Recipe
Baked apples are a delicious treat that’s easy to tailor to the ingredients you have on hand, or to your personal preferences. Once you’ve tried it my way, I hope you’ll feel free to experiment by swapping out some of the ingredients.
Not a fan of almonds? Try pecans, macadamias, or walnuts.
Don’t have dried apricots on hand? Dried pears, peaches, or sultanas would work equally well.
You can also swap out the spices. Depending on my mood, I’ve been known to use cloves, cinnamon, allspice, and nutmeg, to name but a few.
So, please, use this recipe as a template to create your own flavour combinations. Most of all, i hope your family enjoys these deliciously rich baked apples every bit as much as mine does. Bon appétit!