It snowed last night in Boston! This Pre-Halloween snow may be common occurrence in Montreal where it's halfway between the Equator and North Pole, but Boston?! Regardless of the weather conditions, it is still technically Fall and I'm going to continue to make Fall themed shots!
Recently in my Gelaboratory I've been trying to defy the laws of gravity and Newtonian physics with gelatin. I was very inspired by Chef Jose Andres' talk at Harvard about gelation. So, I've been playing with the idea of surprise. Like cutting open a fruit to find it filled with natural gelatin. I started with tangerines, lemons, strawberries and had just been working on apples when this blog entry came up in my Google reader from That's So Michelle.
D'oh, bested! Now I believe that ideas are like babies. If you don't birth them, someone else will. (Okay, that doesn't make a lot of sense) I'm not going to let that stop me. So what's better than one baby..... two babies! Here's my recipe for Caramel Apple Cider gelee in real apples.
Caramel Apple Cider Shots
5 apples, Granny Smith work best for color and longevity. I used a local variety called Suncrisp.
4 oz. Apple Cider
1 cinnamon stick
1/4 tsp. dried orange rind
4 oz Apple Juice Concentrate
1 Envelope Knox gelatine
2 Tbsp Caramel sauce
1 cup Buttery Rum Simple Syrup (recipe below)
1/4 tsp. citric acid
1 cup water
1 tsp. Rum flavoring
1 tsp butterscotch flavoring
Buttery Rum simple syrup
1 cup sugar
1 cup water
4 oz. Spiced Rum
4 oz. Butterscotch Schnapps
Heat the ingredients in a small pan over the stove to simmer. Let sit for 5 minutes, remove from heat and cool.
In a container, add the cloves, cinnamon stick, orange rind, and cider. Seal and let sit in the fridge overnight. Rapid method: Heat the open container in a microwave till hot (not boiling), then seal and put in the fridge or 20 minutes. Strain the mixture to remove any hard bits.
Mix the citric acid to the water in a bowl and set aside. You can also use 1 tsp lemon juice in one cup of water.
In a medium microwave proof bowl, combine spiced cider, apple juice and Knox. Microwave until hot and stir. Set aside to cool.
Time for the apples! Use a corer to carefully remove the top. Think pumpkin carving. Set this aside to plug up the hole. Using the melon baller or small spoon scrape away the insides of the apple. Optional: You can food process this, strain, and substitute this for the 4 oz of Apple Juice concentrate.
Pour some of the citric acid liquid into the apple, slosh around, pour out, and set apple upside down on paper towels. This will prevent apple browning.
Go back to the gelatin. Add the simple syrup and caramel sauce. Stir until dissolved.
Line the apples right side up in a pan and carefully pour the caramel gelatin into the apples, almost to the top. Place the apple top back on (think pumpkin again).
Put the apples in the fridge for four hours.
To present the apple, cut into quarters or sixths. Sprinkle with crushed peanuts for extra garnish.