A Little Spice is Nice

A Little Spice is Nice Warm winter spices

It’s amazing how taste can conjure up memories. Just a sip of apple cider takes you back to the fall, a swig of eggnog has you decking the halls, and the smell of cinnamon sugar pretzels transports you straight to the mall.
 
Warm spices such as cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves remind us of fall and winter baking, primarily because they pair so well with apples, pumpkin, and root vegetables such as carrots and sweet potatoes. We’ve gathered three recipes using these spices, which will send amazing smells wafting out of your oven, and perhaps conjure up a memory or two.
 
Sweet & Spicy Roasted Carrots
Serves 4
 
2 bunches small rainbow carrots, peeled and tops trimmed off
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons maple syrup
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
¼ teaspoon coriander
¼ teaspoon ginger
½ teaspoon cinnamon
¾ teaspoon kosher salt
 
Preheat oven to 400°F. Mix olive oil, maple syrup, cayenne, coriander, ginger, and cinnamon in a small bowl. Place carrots on a sheet pan, pour mixture over the top, and toss to coat. Spread carrots evenly on the sheet pan and season with salt. Bake for 30–40 minutes or until carrots are tender.
 
Puff Pastry Cinnamon Rolls
Just 5 ingredients and 35 minutes to fresh baked (and super flaky) cinnamon rolls!
Makes 12 rolls
 
1 (14 oz) package Dufour puff pastry, defrosted
4 tablespoons salted butter, softened
½ cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
a pinch each of nutmeg and cloves
¼ cup finely chopped pecans (optional)
 
Preheat oven to 400°F. Unroll the puff pastry onto a lightly floured surface. Roll gently with a rolling pin to smooth out the creases. Spread the butter evenly over the surface of the dough. Sprinkle with the brown sugar, cinnamon, and chopped pecans.
 
Starting at the long end, roll the pastry into a tight cylinder. Using a sharp knife, cut the dough into approximately 1 inch pieces. You’ll get about 12 slices. Place the pieces on a parchment lined baking sheet. Bake for 20–25 minutes, or until puff pastry is golden brown. Remove from the oven, let cool for 2 minutes, and place on a cooling rack. Enjoy immediately or allow to cool to room temperature.
 
Baked Apples with Raisins & Walnuts
Serves 6
 
6 large baking apples (Gala, Jonathan, Braeburn, Honeycrisp, Granny Smith)
½ cup brown sugar
¼ cup chopped walnuts
¼ cup golden raisins
1 teaspoon cinnamon
pinch of nutmeg
pinch of salt
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup apple juice or water
To serve: vanilla ice cream
 
Preheat oven to 375°F. Cut ½ inch off the top of each apple and cut a sliver off the bottom of each apple so it sits upright. Using a melon baller or a spoon, scoop the seeds and core out of each apple, creating an approximately 1½ inch wide circle in the center.
 
In a small bowl, stir together the brown sugar, walnuts, cinnamon and raisins, along with a pinch of salt. Stuff the mixture evenly into each apple. Cut the butter into 6 pieces and place it on top of each raisin-stuffed apple.
 
Place apples in a baking dish and pour apple juice around the apples. Bake for 30–45 minutes, or until apples and tender. Baste the apple with the juice halfway through. Remove from the oven and let cool for 10 minutes. Top with a scoop of vanilla ice cream before serving.

 

Posted on 11/5/16.