Well, you certainly can feel the change of season coming. Fall is in the air.
Along with the fall colors, the sound of crisp leaves under foot as well as the flavors of apple, spices and pumpkins abounding in the stores and farmer’s markets.
This is the perfect time to introduce a new fragrance to your home to set the mood. Our new Amber Sunset is sure to do just that. It is a perfect combination soft amber notes with oriental, woodsy cedar-wood and spices, finished with sweet musk and vanilla.
A trip through the grocery store revealed that the fresh apple cider is again available. I love to make boiled apple cider syrup and keep it refrigerated for countless fall recipes. Simply take a gallon of unfiltered apple cider, place in a saucepan and heat to just below boiling. Reduce heat and let simmer, uncovered until reduced to ⅓ of its volume. This will take 5-6 hours, but the only attention required is to give it a quick stir every once in a while as you walk past.
A good way to judge the volume is to mark a chopstick when you pour the cider into the pan. Place the chopstick straight down the middle of the pan and mark the level of the liquid. Now, remove the chopstick and make a mark that is ⅓ of the way up from the mark. When the level of your liquid reaches this mark you are finished. When reduced, let cool and place in a covered container and refrigerate.
You will end up with a perfectly sweet syrup with intense apple flavor that will keep for months refrigerated. It is so delicious in so many ways. Try adding it to apple breads, pies and cakes. Drizzle it over pancakes or waffles. Use it as a great seasonal addition to your vinaigrettes.
Use a little to sweeten a filling of seasonal fruits and stuff it in a crepe or spoon over ice cream. You will find yourself reaching for this sweet concoction so often, that you are going to want to make an extra batch at the end of the season, so you will have it on hand when the fresh cider is no longer available.
One of my favorite uses is this irresistible apple salted caramel sauce.
Use it for dipping crisp fall apples, or spoon over a dish of cinnamon ice cream It is heavenly. The same recipe if cooked a bit more makes a delicious salted apple caramel that you will be proud to share.
- ⅓ cup apple cider syrup
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 stick butter
- 1 cup cream
- ½ teaspoon apple pie spice
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon bourbon
- Add the cider syrup, sugar, butter, cream, and apple pie spice to a medium saucepan. Heat over medium high heat until the caramel thickens and starts to darken in color, about 10-15 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the salt, vanilla extract, and bourbon. Set aside to cool. Caramel with thicken when it cools. Cover and refrigerate.
But, it also will add a unbelievable fall essence to a simple cocktail. The golden color of the bourbon and apple cider syrup lays at the bottom and the ginger beer slowly migrates into it, creating a beautiful sunset look.
- 1 ½ ounce bourbon
- ½ ounce apple cider syrup
- juice of ½ lemon
- ginger beer
- apple slice for garnish
- Fill a cocktail shaker half full of ice. Pour the bourbon, apple cider syrup over the ice. Shake until very cold. Pour over ice in cocktail glass. Gently pour the ginger beer over the top to create layers. Garnish with an apple slice.
Apples and bourbon play so well together and I know this delicious libation will make the transition from warm summer evening just a little bit easier.