15 Feb Stuffed apples smoked on a cedar plank
Cooking on a cedar plank ensures that the apples are cooked ‘indirectly’. That prevents them from burning at the bottom. The edges of the plank will smoke, adding an extra layer of flavour. Plus it smells delicious and looks fantastic.
4 star or elstar apples
4 generous teaspoons of strawberry jam
4 Amaretti biscuits
5 grams of almond shavings
For the custard
250 ml milk
3 egg yolks
1 level tbsp corn-starch
2 level tbsp caster sugar
2 vanilla pods
2 tbsp crème fraîche
A cedarwood plank
A large bowl
- First make the custard: heat the milk in a pan. Cut the vanilla pod lengthways and scrape out the marrow. Add the vanilla marrow to the milk. In a bowl, stir the egg yolks and the sugar until frothy. Loosen the corn-starch with a few tablespoons of milk (the paste should be completely smooth). Once the milk boils, stir in the corn-starch and let it simmer for a while. First add a little hot milk to the egg mixture, then the egg mixture to the hot milk (‘make it a family’). Keep whisking until the sauce has thickened slightly and remove the pan from the heat. Allow to cool slightly and then stir in the crème fraîche.
- Cut a very thin slice from the bottom of the apples to stop them falling over. Remove the core and hollow out the apples with a melon bore. Make sure that the base remains whole. Spoon a generous teaspoon of strawberry jam into the apple, followed by the crumbs from one Amaretti biscuit. Now fill the apple with the custard and pour a little honey over it. Stick some of the almond shavings onto the apple. Place the filled apples on a cedar plank.
- Place the plank on the grill, directly over the embers so that the sides of the plank start to smoke. Cook the stuffed apples for 20 minutes until they’re slightly soft to the touch. Turn the grill (or the plank with the apples) halfway through the cooking time so that all the apples get the same amount of heat and smoke. Serve warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream!