I have a very long list of favorite breakfast foods. Obviously croissants, Chocolat Chaud, and my Outrageous Breakfast Bake are super-high on the list. But hold on to your hats because what occupies the top spot is not one of those things. What occupies the top spot is not even French. OMG, this is hard to admit. My favorite breakfast is my Sausage Gravy and Biscuits.
But that’s not all. To round out the meal, I need some buttery, cinnamon-y apples.
Why is this so difficult to talk about? Because as much as I love love love Sausage Gravy and Biscuits, I can’t help but lump it into the category of Southern food that includes fried bologna and casseroles made with fill-in-the-Campbell’s-condensed-soup of your choice, and I find that kind of mortifying because those are foods that completely gross me out. I wish I could shift it over my other Southern food category that includes braised collard greens and Benton’s bacon. That’s a way classier category. My homemade Sausage Gravy and Biscuits makes that category (#modestmuch?), but what if I add cinnamon apples? I’ve been served cinnamon apples that are so fresh and buttery there is no question they are homemade… and then I’ve been served cinnamon apples that totally came from a can. Can the apples really be the lynch pin in whether my favorite Southern breakfast menu falls into the ‘could-be-on-a-farm-to-table-restaurant-menu’ to ‘Cracker-Barrel-special?’
Yes, they can. And here at the Food Hound, we likes to keep it classy, so we’s gonna make us some homemade cinnamon apples.
There are so, so many reasons to love these cinnamon apples. The first is obvious: they are amazing. Softened by roasting in butter, fragrant with cinnamon, and just a little extra sweetness from brown sugar = total heaven. Second, they use the oven which is my fave fave fave way to cook things. Oven = hands-off and no pan to clean, woop woop. Third, they are sooooo versatile. I have made them for breakfast with my aforementioned Sausage Gravy and Biscuits (dude, just click the link already- it’s SO GOOD) and for dinner with Butternut-Farro Salad with Feta and Walnuts (another fave) at the helm.
But that’s not all. Have I mentioned they taste like an amazing apple pie filling? Put them over ice cream. Make an apple pie milkshake. Top a bowl of hot oatmeal. Make your plain Greek yogurt WAY better. Add some pan drippings and serve them with pork or chicken. Put them on pizza. Whaaaaat? Just wanted to see if you were paying attention. Seriously, this is one of those recipes that is so utilitarian, you do an evil laugh *MUAHAHAHA* when you crack the code for making it at home, therefore ensuring you always have a trick up your sleeve. Or maybe that’s just me?
Keep it classy. Make your own cinnamon apples. XOXO TFH
- 4 Fuji apples, peeled and thinly sliced
- 1 T lemon juice
- 3 T brown sugar
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp cornstarch
- Pinch of ground all spice
- Pinch of salt
- 3 T butter, cut into small cubes
- Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Spread sliced apples across the baking sheet and sprinkle with lemon juice. Sprinkle with brown sugar, cinnamon, cornstarch, all spice, and salt. Toss with fingers. Top with cubes of butter and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until golden and bubbly to your desired doneness. Remove from oven and transfer apples to a large bowl. Stir them around to make sure all of the melted cinnamon-sugar butter is evenly distributed, then let them rest for a few minutes before serving. This is when they truly take on the flavor and consistency of apple pie filling! (Otherwise you can end up with a random apple piece that doesn't get hit with the butter and it can be dry. No bueno, friends.)