Fall may just be my favorite season (it is possible I’ve also said that about spring and winter, but I’m sure I’ve never said it about summer). We still have peaches available, plus the pleasure of power walking without worries of a heat stroke, soft blankets, turning on the oven without tuning on the air conditioning, and local apples! Specifically, pancakes plus apples.
Nothing can compare to the breadth of flavors available with local apples, and they’re best eaten in season. To take full advantage, you could make your favorite pancake recipe and top with a simple apple compote: a bit of butter, bourbon, sugar and apples cooked down in a saucepan.
This Apple Spice Pancake recipe includes shredded apple in the batter. When testing the recipe, a few of my testers tried variations. One friend used buttermilk, whole wheat flour, while another used dark muscovado sugar (you can find it at Echo Hill Country Store in Fleetwood, or online). Dark muscovado sugar is unrefined brown baking sugar with a fine, brown-sugar-like texture and a high molasses content. She swears by it in her chocolate chip cookies and gingerbread. (I’ll see if she’ll share that gingerbread recipe with us!)
Be sure to stop by your local orchard to discover the many apple varieties – way beyond red delicious – that will temp your fancy. Two orchards I often visit also have fall events that make a visit truly memorable.
Brecknock Orchard’s Fall Festival takes place Saturdays from September 29 through October 27, plus Columbus Day on October 8. You can find a list of all the activities, food sampling and orchard offerings at BrecknockOrchard.com.
Weaver’s Orchard’s Fall Family Fun Days are happening on Saturdays from mid-September to the end of October, and on Columbus Day. See the detailed activities, like hay rides and an obstacle course, at WeaversOrchard.com.
And if you are up for a road trip, why not make visit to the 54th Annual National Apple Harvest Festival, outside of Gettysburg, during the first and second weekends in October. We will be there – I hope you’ll join the fun!
- 1 cup milk
- 1 egg, beaten
- 2 tablespoons butter, melted
- 2 tablespoons apple sauce
- ¾ cup peeled and shredded apple
- 1½ cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- In a large bowl, combine the milk, egg, butter, apple sauce and apple.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Stir the flour mixture into the apple mixture, just until combined. Do not beat or over-mix.
- Heat a lightly oiled frying pan over medium to medium-high heat. Scoop the batter onto the pan, using a ¼ cup measure for each pancake. Brown on each side and serve hot.