Here’s a nice breakfast dish that I had forgotten about. Usually when we have apples on hand, if I haven’t already turned them into applesauce, we saute them in butter and serve them as part of a German apple pancake. Last weekend, though, some fresh Jonagolds were crying out to be used and Jon remembered the apple popover recipe from the San Francisco Chronicle cookbook.
We used to make this a lot, and my parents still do (they often throw in blueberries, which is nice). It’s basically a clafoutis, with a lightly sweetened egg batter baked over apples that have been precooked with butter and cinnamon. As with many dishes of this sort, you could use any sort of fruit or seasoning – I haven’t tried pears, but I bet it would be fantastic. Maybe with a little nutmeg?
You never know how this is going to turn out – we never know if it’s to do with humidity, or temperature, or the fruit, or what. Sometimes the whole thing poofs up into a perfect dome, sometimes you get a craggy mountain range. This one refused to rise at all, but produced fantastic caramelized edges. Certainly nothing to complain about. We ate half on Sunday and saved the rest to reheat for Monday breakfast, which worked very well. It would also do nicely as a dessert, with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
Giant Apple Popover
from a recipe by Flo Braker, in the The San Francisco Chronicle Cookbook edited by Michael Bauer and Fran Irwin
- 2 apples, peeled and sliced
- 4 Tbsp butter
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1/8 tsp ground cinnamon
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup milk
- 1 Tbsp oil
- 2 packed Tbsp brown sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp salt
Preheat the oven to 425°.
Melt the butter in a large skillet and saute the apples until beginning to soften. Add the sugar and cinnamon and cook just a little more, until soft but not mushy. Scrape them into a pie pan, arranging them to cover the bottom, and let cool.
Combine the eggs, milk, oil, brown sugar, and vanilla in a bowl and beat well, then stir in the flour and salt and whisk thoroughly. If necessary, let the mixture sit to dissolve the flour, then beat again to make sure it’s smooth. You can use a blender if you want.
Pour the batter over the cooled apples and put the pan in the oven. Let bake 20 minutes, then turn down to 350° and bake another 20 minutes or until golden on top – do not open the oven door while the popover is baking!
Serve the popover in thick wedges. Good hot or cold.