Apple-Cinnamon seems to be the most popular combination around here. From pies to cookies, and fresheners to bath soaps, this is one combination that never goes out of style. I understand that apple-cinnamon evokes a festive mood, and reminds us of holiday season. But it gets on my nerves to find the same flavour over and over again. Don’t get me wrong, I do love cinnamon. Only that I prefer using it in savoury dishes than desserts.
To break out from this monotonous practice, I made apple turnovers with cardamom. I grew up savouring cardamom, as most of the Indian desserts call for it. I knew we would love these even before I started, and right I was. The temptation was too much, that two of 'em were gobbled before I could take a picture. If you think apple-cinnamon is the eternal combination, give cardamom a try. You will know what I am talking about.
I have already made these turnovers thrice and the last time I made it using . Few weeks back, Jaden at , invited fellow bloggers to test this product. packages and sells organic spices by the teaspoonful. So every time you open a packet, the rest of the box remains fresh and sealed. I volunteered to test cardamom with this recipe in mind.
The package was too pretty to open. I also found the cardamom seeds were neither whole nor finely ground, which is what I expected. The spice was fresh, aromatic and convenient to use. So if you like a well-stocked spice rack that remains fresh for a long time, tsp spices may be the solution you are looking for.IngredientsPuff pastry – 1 sheet (I used Trader Joe’s artisan puff pastry)
Apples – 2, medium sized
Sugar – 2 tbsp + 2 tsp
Cardamom – ¼ tsp
Cloves – 2, heads only, crushed
Butter – 1 tsp
Lemon juice – 2 tsp
Egg – 1 (I used )Method
Preheat oven to 400F. Thaw puff pastry according to package instructions. Peel, core and thinly slice. If using whole egg, beat the egg with a tbsp of water for egg wash.
In a skillet, melt butter, add apples and sauté until soft, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle 2 tbsp of sugar, cardamom, cloves and lemon juice and stir for another minute. Remove from heat and let cool.
Cut puff pastry into 4 squares. Brush the edges with egg wash. Place 1/4th of the filling in each of the squares and fold over to make a triangle. Press the edges together with a fork to seal. Transfer to baking sheet and brush the top with the remaining egg wash. Sprinkle the rest of the sugar over the turnovers and bake for 10 minutes. Lower the oven temperature 350F and bake for additional 10-15 minutes until the turnovers are golden brown and puffed. When done, cool on a wire rack for 15 minutes and serve warm. The turnovers can be stored at room temperature for 2 days.
Ground spices can be prepared at home. But with cardamoms, the tough skins are not that easy to crush or grind. Sure you can use and save skins to be used later in tea or curry. But I find this inefficient. Instead, I follow what my mom does. As I said earlier, cardamom is used in many Indian sweets prepared during festivities. Hence, before the start of the festival season, my mom grinds a handful of cardamom with a tbsp of sugar in a spice grinder. The sugar provides enough friction to grind even the skins to a smooth powder. If stored in an air tight container, this remains fresh for 6 months. This way, the cardamom skins are used as efficiently as the seeds. Just a tsp to tea or curry would suffice.