Heirloom Apple Tarte Tatin with Clothbound Cheddar

As you may have noticed, I have been on a bit of a puff pastry kick. The reason being that it is just too easy not to! This recipe from start to finish took less then a half an hour, and most that time was spent baking the pastry in the oven.

In our fruit share from Lancaster Farm Fresh this week we got the biggest apples I have ever seen, the rome apple. Roughly the size of two fists, these apples are hearty, tasty and perfect for baking! With my trusty puff pastry already in the freezer, I simply sautéd the apples in butter, cinnamon and a touch of maple syrup. Full disclaimer, this is not a traditionally tarte tatin, which requires a bit more work then this recipe.

Now there is nothing more American then apple pie with cheddar cheese, quality or not, and the folks in the pastry kitchen at Talula's inspired me to rethink this tradition (we have a nearly identical recipe on the menu), and play with the sweetness of the apples and pair it with a zesty but mild cheddar. I recommend Cabot Clothbound Cheddar, which is the standard Vermont cheese wrapped in muslin and aged for a minimum of 10 months in the Cellars at Jasper Hill. The cheese on its own is similar to a English-Style cheddar as opposed to Cabot's more American Styling, and the aging transforms the cheese, giving it caramelly, nutty, and tangy flavors. The cheese compliments the apples and maple and hits ever note on your palate.

Read More

Local Cranberry Popovers

I recently had the pleasure of journeying north to the great state of Maine. My hosts were laboring on their land preparing for the extraordinary winter and I had the delicious kitchen all to myself. Before migrating north I had discovered that cranberries are actually native to our hemisphere and grown on masses in vacationland. When I went into the nearby town of Belegrade I was not disappointed that they had the glowing gems, 2 pounds for a dollar! I scurried home and decided to make these simple cranberry popovers. Once again, the puff pastry made the process ridiculously painless, and would work with any or all fruit fillings if you don't have fresh cranberries on hand. Was a big hit and tastes like fall!
Read More