And just like that, it’s fall. We were swimming on Sunday. Today, it’s raining and chilly enough for hoodies. Mother Nature doesn’t dilly dally around here.
Before we can blink, the leaves will be a rainbow of bright reds, burnt oranges, and golden yellows. And then the snow will hit. Ugh. The snow. I still haven’t recovered from last year’s 179 inches. Do the math. That’s almost 15 whopping feet of snow. I could do without Syracuse winters, but Syracuse falls are spectacular. I sometimes forget to appreciate the absolute beauty of where we live.
We brought in September with a visit to a local apple farm. The Paula Reds, an apple similar to McIntosh, were ripe for picking. After a quick tractor ride to the trees, the boys filled two baskets. I’m already planning our next trip back to enjoy the changing fall foliage and fill our baskets with another variety of fresh-picked apples.
There is no shortage of delicious ways to put fresh-picked apples to use. I decided to use a few of our apples to make a quick cinnamon apple topping, which would be delicious over ice cream or mixed in with a bit of yogurt and granola. Or, do as I did, and pair the apples with a creamy buttermilk panna cotta!
Buttermilk Panna Cotta
3/4 cup half and half, divided
1 packet gelatin powder
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
In a small bowl, sprinkle the gelatin powder over 1/4 cup of the milk. Set aside to allow the gelatin to bloom, or soften.
In a saucepan, combine the remaining half and half, buttermilk, sugar, and vanilla extract. Over medium/medium-low heat, gradually heat the mixture, whisking to dissolve the sugar. Once the mixture begins to bubble around the edges and the sugar is fully dissolved, gradually whisk in the gelatin mixture. Gently simmer for a minute or two, until the gelatin is completely dissolved. Strain, if necessary, to remove any undissolved gelatin chunks. Allow the mixture to cool to almost room temperature. Then, pour the mixture into small dishes or ramekins. Refrigerate until set, about 4 hours.
Serve in the dishes, topped with cinnamon apples (recipe below), or unmold to serve plated. To unmold, dip the bottom of the dishes into warm water for a few seconds. Use a knife to loosen the edges. Invert over your serving dish.
Easy Cinnamon Apple Topping
4-5 apples, sliced or chopped
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the apples, sugar, and cinnamon. Cook, stirring frequently, for about 10-15 minutes, until the apples are quite tender and lightly glazed with the sugar and cinnamon.
Related post: Apple Caramel Cake