Dessert, Healthy, Recipes

Stuffed apples

Stuffed apples with Speculoos

Pomme au four (Stuffed apple)

This dessert called “Pomme au four” in France is particularly healthy and delicious. It is so easy you can prepare it to your family at home, it is so good you can prepare it for your guests if you want to finish your dinner with a light sweet touch. I had a dinner last Friday evening and served it. It was a success!

Generally “pomme au four” are apples filled with butter, sugar and cinnamon and baked in oven. It is a French traditional dessert really awsome. My version of “Pomme au four” is as good as the traditional one but much lighter. I use a biscuit called “speculoos”.

Speculoos is a North European biscuit (coming from North of France, Belgium, Netherlands) and initially served during Advent. It is a spiced biscuit prepared with cinnamon. If you don’t find Speculoos in your supermarket, you can easily prepare them by yourself:

Speculoos biscuit recipe

For 20 biscuits

Ingredients

  • 100 g flour
  • 85 g brown sugar 
  • 35 g unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 1/3 teaspoon baking soda
  • Salt
  • 1/2 tablesppon cinnamon
  • Optional: 1/4 teaspoon of a mixture of nutmeg (powder), clove (powder), and ginger powder. That spiced mixtures is called “four spices” or “quatre épices”  in France”.

Instructions

Combine all ingredients together. You can add a little quantity of water if needed for an optimal consistency. Let the dough rest for several hours (from 1 to 12 hours depending the time you have…). Then, roll out the dough to about 0.12 inches (3 mm) and cut small pieces of biscuits with a shaped cookie cutter. Or simply cut rectangles of dough. Space the biscuits on a buttered baking  tray. Let enough space between them and bake at 250°F (160°C) for about 20 minutes. Then, out of oven let the biscuits cool and dry for at least 2 hours.

Apple choice is also important to prepare stuffed apples. Choose preferably an apple dedicated to baking. Different varieties exist with different textures after baking: from smelting to firm…

For instance in France, for stuffed apples we can select:

  • Ariane
  • Elstar
  • Golden du Limousin
  • Pink Lady
  • Reine des reinettes

 

A word about nutrition: apple, a key fruit!

Apple is an excellent fruit. Low in calories and very rich in antioxydants, vitamins, fibers and mineral salts (vitamine C, E, beta-caroten, potassium, magnesium, manganese). It reduces heart diseases risk and cholesterol rate.

 

Stuffed apples / “Pommes au four” recipe

Timing

  • Preparation: 10 min
  • Baking: from 25 to 45 min depending on the variety of apple
  • Total: 35 to 55 min

For 6 servings

Ingredients

  • 6 apples
  • 6 speculoos (about 4.23 oz or 120g)
  • 1.06 oz (30g) brown sugar (vergeoise or cassonade in France)
  • 1.06 oz (30g) unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 4 spoons of water (5 cl)

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C)
  • Wash the apples and dry them with a kitchen towel
  • Cut the top of the apple horizontally (about 1/3 of its height). You should get two pieces of apple: the “body” and the “hat”.
  • Empty and clean the core of the apple with a knife without damaging the bottom of the apple (the apple should remain closed at its bottom). Remove the seeds and the core. That is the trickier part of the recipe. Take your time to avoid damaging the apples.
  • Crumble the speculoos, add the sugar, the butter and the cinnamon
  • Stuff each apple with this preparation. If some extra preparation remains you can put it on the top of the apple. Then, cover each apple with the “hat” of the apple.
  • Lay the apples into a baking dish with 4 to 5 spoons of water and bake for about 25 to 45 minutes (check regularly the baking, the length of baking depends on the variety of apple). Personnaly, I use “Pink lady” and bake them for 45 minutes. This variety remains a little firm even baked. If I had used “Boskoop” they would have became smelting after baking… Just try different apples and select the one you prefer 🙂
  • Serve warm and enjoy!

For other apple light recipe, see: Healthy apple, walnuts and cinnamon French crêpes

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