- 1/3 cup packed, dried, sulfite-free raisins
- 1/3 cup packed, dried, pitted dates
- 1/3 cup unsalted, unsweetened almond or cashew butter
- 1/4 cup frozen orange juice concentrate
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla or maple extract (preferably nonalcoholic)
- 1 1/4 teaspoons apple pie spice or pumpkin pie spice
- 9 small to medium-size tart-sweet apples (5 to 6 ounces each): Early Gold, Ginger Gold, Braeburn, Gala, Fuji, Pink Lady or Cortland
- 1/3 cup filtered water
1. Heat oven to 375°. Mince dried fruit and combine with remaining filling ingredients. Or, combine filling ingredients in a food processor or Vita-Mix and process until smooth.
2. Wash apples and core twice to create a wide cavity. Remove apple bits from around seeds, then core, mince and add to filling. Peel upper 1/3 of each apple to keep skins from splitting during cooking, or remove entire peel.
3. Fill apples, mounding extra filling on top. Stand apples in a 9-inch square or oblong baking pan. Add water to pan. Tightly cover pan with parchment then aluminum foil, or a tight-fitting lid. Bake in the preheated oven for 50 to 60 minutes, or until fork tender but not mushy.
4. Simmer the pan juices in a saucepan to reduce to 1/4 cup, then spoon over apples. Serve warm or close to room temperature. Refrigerate leftovers and use within 5 days.
Recipe compliments of The Garden of Eating: A Produce-Dominated Diet & Cookbook by Rachel Albert & Don Matesz (Planetary Press, 2006); TheGardenOfEatingDiet.com.