A lifelong obsession with cooking, a short-lived (yet still desired at times) dream of being a world-class chef, and a current career in journalism has all lead me to plunge head first into the world of food blogging.
For months I’ve been researching food bloggers – ones on brunching, gluten-free, gourmet, single-lady cooking, married-lady cooking (you get the idea) – trying to find my particular niche in the ever expanding DC area blogging arena. Then I came to a conclusion…I have no clue what my “food voice” is yet. So instead of trying to perfect the heck out of this blog, I decided I’m just going to go for it and hopefully my voice will evolve on its own.
And I figured, what better time to start a food blog then at the beginning of one of my favorite cooking seasons, fall. The chill in the air has stews and roasting taking the place of grilled fare and outdoor eating. Root vegetables, pumpkins, and apples take center stage over the previous season’s creative twists on various cold salads and heirloom tomato obsession.
Growing up in New England, when that chill came in late September, early October it was time to go hit up the many apple orchards in the area and go to my town’s annual Apple Harvest Festival. While there were crafts, food, and lots and lots of apples in a variety of forms, by far the most popular festival food was the apple fritter.
Each time I went with friends to the festival, the immediate goal was to go and find the apple fritter stand – do not pass go, do not collect $200, find the man. You could tell you were getting close when you started to smell the fragrant scent combination of apple, cinnamon and fried dough.
And sure enough, the line for fritters is stretching through the crowded festival, but like any apple fritter lover you waited in that line because you knew it was worth it. Minutes later you are rewarded with a white paper bag of hot, fresh, golden-fried apple fritters, which you immediately douse in powder sugar and cinnamon, making sure it sticks to each and every fritter.
I’m telling you these fritters are sinfully delicious – crispy exterior and fluffy, donut-like interior with small chunks of apple in every bite. I have searched high and low for the perfect apple fritter recipe and finally think I’ve come across one that does the Apple Festival fritters justice. And go figure, my search took me back to the state where it all started (see below).
Apple Fritters (Adapted from Nov 21, 2002 “Recipe Exchange” in the Hartford Courant)
2 cups flour
1/4 cup sugar
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 cup vegetable oil
3/4 cup milk
1 large apple, peeled, cored and chopped
oil for frying (vegetable, canola)
1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon cinnamon
Mix first six dry ingredients in bowl. Add oil, milk and egg and beat until smooth. Fold in apple. In large, heavy pan or fryer, heat oil to 375 degrees.
Drop dough by teaspoons into hot oil and fry for about 3 minutes or until nicely browned.
Remove from fat and drain on paper towels or brown paper.
Cool a bit then shake in a mixture of 1/2 cup sugar and 1 tablespoon cinnamon in a plastic or paper bag.