Tuesday, October 02, 2012

Mixing it up

A friend of mine is getting married at the end of the month. She was talking to me about wedding favors, and since she's from Seattle, she loves to cook, and it's a fall wedding, I immediately thought of this exercise shared by Seattle blogger "NotMartha".

I shared the idea, and my friend loved it. Another friend offered to make it for her! I thought, wow, that's a generous offer.
A couple weeks later, the baking friend told me that she was going to be out of town on the scheduled baking day, so would I do it instead. Since I have a problem saying "no", I ended up with the task.

To prepare, I needed to modify the recipe since Megan baked hers with blueberries and the bride wanted apple.
One of my friends on the Team, PieMan, has baked these amazing crumbles for the whole Team at an end of the season race the last two years, and I figured if anyone could help me with advice on pre-preparing, changing it up, and identifying pitfalls, he could do it!

PieMan gave me some suggestions and this past weekend I did some experimenting.
Here are the results...

I used a pre-prepared tin of apple pie filling from Wegmens and two Fuji apples.
I mixed these with other things as follows:
1. just the tin filling
2. apples with some lemon juice and cinnamon
3. apples with some lemon juice, cinnamon, and 1/8 cup sugar
4. apples with some lemon juice, cinnamon, and 1/2 Tablespoon sugar
5. tin filling with cranberries
6. apples with some lemon juice, cinnamon, and cranberries
7. tin filling with 4 Hot Tamales
8. tin filling with 2 Hot Tamales
9. apples with some lemon juice, cinnamon, and 4 Hot Tamales
10. apples with some lemon juice, cinnamon, and 2 Hot Tamales

Some post-baking photos.
1. and 2.

3. and 4.

5. and 6. on top, 9. and 10. on the bottom

7. and 8.

1. apples were mushy
2. very bland
3. too sweet
5. and 6. cranberries added nothing
7. 8. 9. and 10. The waxiness of the Hot Tamales made a melted chewiness, and you tasted none of the spiciness.

Here's my plan:

I will be preparing 108 120 jars, that's 9 10 sets of 12.
Since I have a convection oven, I plan to bake 24 at a time, 12 on each baking sheet.
As Megan suggests, I will use 3 batches of the topping recipe for 24 jars.

That's 13.5 15 batches of topping.

I will need 4 apples for each set of 12 jars, 40 apples in all. I have an apple slicing tool, and I will half all of the slices before I put them in the jars because they fit better that way. I will mix each batch of sliced apples with 6 Tablespoons of lemon juice, 6 Tablespoons of sugar, and 2 teaspoons of cinnamon.
So for each baking of 24 jars, that will be:
8 apples
12 T lemon juice (3/4 cup)
12 T sugar (3/4 cup)
4 t cinnamon (might add more, 2 T?)

I need 9 10 batches of filling.

It takes 1.25 hours to prep and bake each set of 24 jars (25 mins for the filling, and then 25 mins for the topping). That means it will take about 6 6.5 hours to make all the jars on the day of baking.

The weekend before, I will pre-measure the dry ingredients and put them in tubs. We will peel and cut the apples, mix them with lemon juice, and put them in ziplock bags. So, the day of, is about melting butter and mixing it with buttermilk and vanilla right before each batch of filling comes out of the oven. I am hoping my friend visiting from MN will be at my house, and not at the conference for which she is coming to DC, on that day!

Clean jars ready for baking.


I'm hoping to remember to take pic's of the next steps in the process too...
Remember to remind me!

No comments: