BE HAPPY WITH AP­PLE DAPPY

A meal­adi­vine treat made from late ap­ples is the per­fect meal.

NZ Lifestyle Block - - Diy Food - KRISTINA JENSEN

Ev­ery now and then I steal a recipe and call it my own. It wan­ders into my kitchen and be­comes a sig­na­ture dish, some­thing tasty that I per­son­ally would like to be re­mem­bered for. With a fam­ily story or two folded gen­tly around its ori­gin, in­gre­di­ents or raw ma­te­ri­als, I pro­ceed to em­bel­lish and al­ter the recipe slightly and hey presto, it's mine!

I'm pretty cer­tain that this has been hap­pen­ing since peo­ple started cook­ing and shar­ing food around camp fires, so I'm go­ing to bla­tantly blame it all on my an­ces­tors.

That's how I came up with the recipe for ap­ple dappy. How­ever, be­cause I am very grate­ful for yet another good idea for us­ing the boxes of ap­ples that pro­lif­er­ate in my kitchen at this time of the year, I openly ac­knowl­edge that I pil­fered the orig­i­nal recipe from Laura Wash­burn's ex­cel­lent lit­tle book, Cook­ing With Ap­ples & Pears. I chanced upon it at a friend's house a cou­ple of years ago and promptly of­fered to make ap­ple dappy for dessert that night. So im­pressed were we all with its fluffy spi­rals of dough and ap­ple fill­ing that my friend gave me the book and told me to go away and try out all the recipes.

I think I am sup­posed to re­turn it at some point with notes in the mar­gins as to the DR (Di­vin­ity Rat­ing) of each recipe but some­how that hasn't hap­pened yet, which should in­di­cate to you that you should shoot out and buy Cook­ing With Ap­ples & Pears straight away and start repli­cat­ing and/or ex­per­i­ment­ing.

There are two great things about shar­ing the ap­ple dappy recipe with you that co­in­cide with this time of year. One, there areusu­ally heaps of ap­ples around that need us­ing up, those wrinkly ones that sit in the bot­tom of the bowl. Also, if you've man­aged to keep your ap­ple harvest nice and cool some­where, your ap­ples will have con­verted their in­te­ri­ors into sug­ars which are per­fect for stew­ing up to make ap­ple dappy.

Plus, it's win­ter and ev­ery­one is in need of warm, fill­ing desserts to keep up with the chilly weather. Or, as my son Theo points out, why wait for pud­ding? Let's have ap­ple dappy for break­fast!

Pin­wheels have been pop­ping out of my oven for so long that I can't re­call where and when I first be­came ac­quainted with them, but there is a dis­tant mem­ory in­volv­ing a hippy com­mune in Canada and a tall, dark-haired fel­low driv­ing a MGB. Like I said ear­lier, the story is im­por­tant, and I like to fol­low in Never Cry Wolf au­thor Far­ley Mowat's foot­steps when he wrote about never let­ting the truth stand in the way of a good story.

I ad­mit to em­ploy­ing the win­ter pesto pin­wheels as a sneaky way to get greens into my kids. The older ones never knew that they were eat­ing chick­weed, cleavers, dan­de­lions, puha, wa­ter­cress and pars­ley, be­cause I had clev­erly trans­formed these so-called 'weeds' into a di­vinely warm, melt-in-your-mouth cheesy roll.

Our youngest son Theo is 11 (pic­tured at right) and he's just happy to have some­one make him food so he'll munch away hap­pily with­out ask­ing ques­tions. How­ever, as he is be­com­ing a master of the bread ma­chine, he'll soon have pin­wheels un­der his belt.

I have dis­cov­ered over the years of be­ing a mum to three strap­ping lads and work­ing in an af­ter-school care cen­tre that kids love mak­ing spi­ral food. It seems that putting in­gre­di­ents to­gether by rolling them up into a sausage and then chop­ping the sausage into spi­rals re­ally cap­tures their sense of cre­ativ­ity and in­dus­try. There's not much that can go wrong re­ally, apart from a bit of goo squish­ing out here and there but when you're a kid cook­ing is all about mak­ing a mess any­way.

And that's from some­one who suf­fers from an in­her­ited anti-mess gene but strives on to­wards the seem­ingly unattain­able state of 'let­ting them do it by them­selves with­out stand­ing over them'.

It's win­ter and ev­ery­one is in need of warm fill­ing

desserts.

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