Baked Apples A La Healthier

Although I was touting the health benefits of apples yesterday, the Apple Cuplets recipe — with the recommended cream added at least —is probably not the most healthful of desserts.

Here’s a baked apple variation, once again from that Mayo Clinic newsletter that should rank a bit higher on the healthful scale.

Granola Ginger Apples

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Cut 4 large apples (the recipe specifies Golden Delicious, but I would choose a baking variety from the local orchard instead) in half through the stem and bottom ends. Scoop out the core and thinly slice the rounded edge of the apple to form a flat base.

Finely crush 3 oat and honey granola bars and combine with ¼ cup roasted almonds, chopped; ¼ cup chopped crystallized ginger, 1 tablespoon soft margarine and ¾ teaspoon cinnamon. Spoon the mixture into the core side of the apples, pressing to gently pack. Arrange apples with the flat base down in a 9- by 13-inch pan.

In a bowl, combine 1 ¼ cup apple cider with 1/3 cup cherry or strawberry jam, then pour into the bottom of the pan.

Bake the apples for about 45 to 50 minutes, basting twice with the pan juices. When the apples are tender, carefully remove them from the pan. Return the juices to the oven for an additional 10 minutes until the juices thicken slightly.

Serve the apples war or cold and top with the pan juices.

Makes 8 servings.