If you’ve ever eaten apple dumplings, you know how delicious they can be. Commonly served for breakfast or dessert, these pastries are filled with apples, cinnamon, and occasionally raisins for a mouth-watering treat.
Throughout the years, dumplings have been a popular food staple, but they were often filled with meat. As the recipe evolved, the fruit was substituted including plums and pears to make dumplings sweeter and more dessert-like. However, out of all these fruits, it is apple dumplings that seem to be the most popular and enduring.
Apple dumplings are native to the northeastern United States, nearby Pennsylvania. They are commonly served in Pennsylvania Dutch and Amish culture. However, other cultures have adopted similar recipes.
In the UK a suet or short-crust pastry is often used. In addition to apples, dates, and raisins are used to fill the pastry and are placed directly into the apple after it is cored.
Apple dumplings are also popular in Czech cuisine. However, it's important to note that these are not like Asian dumplings in cooking. The dough is boiled rather than steamed or pan-fried. This method gives the dumplings an extremely unique taste and texture.
Although making apple dumplings isn’t difficult, it does take some time and preparation. Apples need to be peeled and cored before they are placed on the dough. Then cinnamon and sugar are added, the dough is folded over, and the dumplings are baked until tender. To save some time, some chefs might want to use a refrigerated pie crust.
These are the old-fashioned apple dumplings that your grandmother used to make. An apple dumpling is warm and flaky, like your own personal apple pie. Eat this simple but scrumptious dessert when it is fresh from the oven. They are great to serve with ice cream or in milk. Once you taste it, you’ll know your time was well spent.
1 pastry for 2-crust pie
- 1 cup granulated white sugar
- 2 cups water
- 3 Tablespoons butter (softened)
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 6 apples (peeled and cored)
- 1/2 cup granulated white sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1 1/2 teaspoons nutmeg
- 2 Tablespoons butter (softened)
1. Roll pastry slightly less than 1/8″ thick. Cut into 7″ squares.
2. Bring syrup ingredients to a boil. Boil for 3 minutes.
3. Put the apple in the center of each pastry square. Fill with a mixture of sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Dot each with a teaspoon of butter.
4. Bring points of pastry up over the apple and overlap.
5. Place a few inches apart in a baking pan. Pour 1 cup of hot syrup mixture around the dumplings.
6. Bake at 425 degrees F for 45 minutes. Just before serving pour the rest of the warm syrup over the dumplings and serve with cream.
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The image featured at the top of this post is ©iStock.com/DarrenFisher.