Thursday, September 25, 2014

Grandma's Old Fashioned Apple Dumpling Recipe: Seriously BEST Fall Dessert Ever

Okay, I know I have said BEST EVER, on a few of my recipes. This, however, should be labeled under my BEST EVER, all-time FAVORITE, can't pass through fall without making it, family roots, recipe. 

I simply cannot remember a single fall season of my life that didn't contain a batch of apple dumplings. If it wasn't my Grandma whipping some out, it would be my Aunt, or my Mom. Our family doesn't have a lot of recipes that have lasted through the generations, as we are a creative cooking family that enjoys trying the new. These dumplings have yet to be knocked out of our #1 dessert placement. Nothing can beat 'em, I tell ya!

So this recipe is not super precise one (outside of DO NOT DEVIATE from granny Smith). Depending on how juicy the apples are, how tart the apples are, will depend upon the quantity of sugar and spices. It's all to the taste...which isn't a bad leads to lots of tasting along the way of preparation. If you like thick crust, thin's up to you. BIG dumplings, small dumplings... up to you. nutmeg...again, up to you! :) 

Now, for a note on the pie crust used in this recipe. I have recently converted from the traditional, classic: Betty Crocker Recipe Crust,  to a new flakier, more flavorful, version. Let me give you a little morsel of insight here - there is an ingredient that makes me cringe a little BUT I guarantee you, it is worth the try.  I am absolutely NOT a fan of Crisco. Pretty much, like really, dislike it. Add any kind of artificial flavoring to butter - UGH - no way. BUT hear me out... {GULP}... listen closely and quickly... this is the ONLY place I believe you will EVER hear me say it. Butter Flavor Crisco simply makes the BEST Pie Crust. A specialty pie maker shared her secret recipe and you guys are getting it here. I am pretty sure you will end up thanking me! 

Our family finds great joy gathering around the kitchen making the apple dumplings. Okay, to be honest, we enjoy eating them MUCH MORE! We have so many dumpling-filled memories swirling through our minds. Call us the Apple Dumpling Gang. 

I hope you enjoy our family recipe as much as we do. 

Grandma's Apple Dumplings: 
Best EVER (and I mean it)

  • 12 Granny Smith Apples
  • 2 Cups Sugar
  • 2-3 teaspoons Cinnamon
  • Dash Nutmeg (optional)
  • 3Cups + 1/4 Cup Flour
  • 2-2/3 Cup Crisco (Butter Flavored)
  • 2/3 Cup Ice Water
  • 1/4 Cup Butter
  • Wax Paper
Cooking Directions
Preheat Oven to 375 degrees
Dumpling Filling:
  1. Peel, core & chop apples. Place chopped apples in a large bowl - add sugar & cinnamon (to your taste),(nutmeg if desired) add 1/4 C. flour to the apples mixture to thicken. When well mixed, set Aside.
Pie Crust: (you can use store bought - or your own version, if you must. BUT this recipe is the BOMB.COM...FLAKIEST Pie Crust EVER)
  1. Sift Flour and salt into a large bowl, add Butter flavored Crisco (trust me here) Using pastry cutter, combine flour and Crisco until pea-sized or smaller. Add water by sprinkling a little at a time into one area and gently mixing with fork - work about a 2-3" area at a time until all of the flour is moistened and can be formed into 4 balls of dough.
  2. Dampen your working service lightly and place a sheet of wax paper down (this will be your rolling mat) the slight moisture suctions the wax paper to the counter) dust wax paper with flour and place on dough ball on it - sprinkle dough with flour, flatten down slightly and place another sheet of wax paper over top. Roll from the center out until the dough is 1/8-1/4" thick. Cut it into quarters (4 pieces) Scoop about 2/3 C. apple mixture into the center of each piece of pie crust (do one at a time) and wrap dough around, crimping and pressing dough firmly to seal at base. place sealed side down in a pie dish. Repeat until all pie crust has been filled.
  3. You should have 2 pie pans with 8 dumplings in each.
  4. Now, dab butter on the top of each dumpling. sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar, if you would like. Now, here is the trick. Yo won't want to miss this step - this sets these dumplings into the top category. Take the apple/cinnamon juice left in the bottom of the bowl and pour over the dumplings in the two pans. Now, if the left over juice filled the pan half way up with liquid you are good to go... if not half way up the side of the pan... then add water to cover bottom half of the dumplings. Then VOILA....they are ready to go in the oven on the middle racks.
  5. Bake for approx 35-45 minutes. Until golden brown and filling is nice and gooey, and added water has become a gooey, cinnamony, delight!

-Simply Sublime

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