10

Beef Tenderloin with Raspberry Wine Sauce and Blue Cheese

beef tenderloin

Sometimes you just need to feel the weight of a rock beneath your feet, the chill of a river’s rush lapping at your toes and the calming peace of being completely alone.

It’s in those moments that you truly find yourself, ground yourself. The minute details that cloud your mind daily start to fade, and you realize that life really is just about putting one foot in front of the other, regardless of what obstructs your path.

Last week was not a good week for me – my company closed its doors, leaving myself and 60 of my colleagues and friends out of jobs. It was heartbreaking, saying goodbye to the magazine I’ve loved and cared for over the past two and a half years.

The truth is, my job had become my identity – and from it, I reaped my sense of worth. I came to respect myself and know myself as the associate editor of Clean Eating Magazine, rather than the person I’ve been all along.

So last week, when for the first time in – well, forever – that I woke up without a plan, a schedule of events or miles-long to-do list, I was lost. I floundered, cleaned the heck out of my apartment and spent a lot of quality time catching up on my Facebook feed. I got angry and sad and frustrated. I cried and ate far too many granola bars. I mourned.

But this week is about letting go. I’m spending time by the river, dipping my toes in the stream. I’m picking strawberries with friends and testing out the recipes I’ve been dreaming of but never had time to actually make. I’m just being with myself, learning about myself and appreciating who I am and all that I have.

I’m grateful for my time with Clean Eating – the friends I’ve made, the lessons I’ve learned and the skills I’ve developed. When I moved to Toronto to take this job, my team in many ways became my family, and the doors of Robert Kennedy Publishing became a sanctuary from the homesickness and loneliness that accompanied leaving my friends and family behind.

And while I’m sad to see this chapter of my life close, I’m finally ready to look forward, to embrace this next challenge and spend a little more time with my toes in the water, learning about myself.

skillet

Beef Tenderloin with Raspberry Wine Sauce and Blue Cheese
Serves 4.

INGREDIENTS
:
1 tbsp butter
1 shallot, minced
1 1/2 cups red wine
1 cup beef broth
1 1/2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1/2 tsp each sea salt and fresh ground black pepper, plus additional to taste
1 tbsp olive oil
4 beef tenderloin medallions (5 to 7 ounces each)
1/4 cup crumbled blue cheese
1 cup fresh raspberries

INSTRUCTIONS:

1. In a medium or large skillet, melt butter on medium heat. Add shallot and sauté, stirring often, until beginning to brown. Add wine, broth and vinegar. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer and cook until liquid reduces by two-thirds, 25 to 30 minutes.

2. Season beef with salt and pepper. In a separate large skillet, heat oil on medium-high. Add beef, leaving at least 1 inch between each medallion, and cook, turning once, until reached desired doneness. Remove from skillet and tent with foil. Let rest for 5 minutes.

3. Season wine mixture with salt and pepper. Stir in raspberries and simmer, stirring occasionally, until berries begin to break down.

4. Divide beef among serving plates and top with wine mixture and blue cheese.

Enjoy!

2

Glowing Grain Salad with Dreamy Avocado Dressing

Glowing Grain Salad

Today I just cooked.

I didn’t worry about the rent, or my overdue Visa payment, or the ants that are taking over my bathroom.

I didn’t stress over my job or my career path or why my boyfriend hasn’t proposed yet.

I didn’t even consider whether I’ll have time to have babies before my ovaries start shriveling or how the hell I’m ever going to be able to buy a decent home, or whether I should pack it all up and move back East to be a pharmacist or a barista or something.

There was none of that. There was just me, my knife and my stove.

I was in control, a feeling I can’t say I’ve experienced for quite some time now. For the past few months, I’ve been more or less rudderless and confused, struggling to figure out exactly what happened to me and how I get out.

My plans backfired. I’d done everything right – worked my way to the top of the class, elbowed into my dream job and had, as far as I was concerned, “made it.”

But they don’t teach you in journalism school how to look your colleagues in the eye as they’re walked out the door. They don’t prepare you for the reality of surpluses and restructuring or whatever other buzzword flies around when an industry is on the edge of collapse.

What I did today was cook – because at the end of the day, that is all I can do. I put my knife in my right hand and a sweet potato in the other and I just chop. I slice away my anxiety and worry and frustration and tears and I make food that nourishes me, soothes me. I take control of my kitchen and I make something beautiful.

This salad is my latest obsession. Bursting with fresh seasonal produce, hearty barley and topped with a creamy avocado and lime yogurt dressing, it transcends salad territory, edging its way into summer comfort food.

Asparagus

Glowing Grain Salad with Dreamy Avocado Dressing
Makes 5 servings.

INGREDIENTS
1 1/2 cups pearl barley, rinsed
2 tsp olive oil
2 5-oz boneless, skinless chicken breasts, pounded to an even thickness
1 bunch asparagus, trimmed and chopped into 1-inch lengths
2 cups loosely packed baby arugula or spinach
1 pear, chopped
1/2 cup dried cranberries

Dressing
1 avocado, peeled and pitted
1/2 cup plain 1% yogurt
Juice of 1/2 lime
1/4 tsp sea salt

INSTRUCTIONS:
1. In a large saucepan, add barley and enough water to cover by 1-inch. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to a gentle simmer and cook until tender, 30 to 35 minutes. Drain well.

2. Meanwhile, in a medium skillet, heat oil on medium. Add chicken and cook, turning once, until golden and cooked through, 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer to a cutting board and use 2 forks to shred chicken into bite-size pieces.

3. Fill a pot with 1-inch water and fit with a steamer basket. Bring water to a simmer and add asparagus to basket. Cook until tender-crisp, 4 to 5 minutes. Transfer to a bowl of ice water until cool, then drain and set aside.

4. Prepare dressing: In a blender, combine avocado, yogurt, lime, salt and 1/2 cup water. Blend until smooth, adding additional water as needed to reach desired consistency. Season with additional salt and lime juice, to taste.

5. In a large bowl, combine barley, chicken, asparagus, arugula and pear. Toss to combine. Divide among serving bowls and garnish with cranberries. Serve with a dollop of dressing.

Enjoy!

1

Healthy Granola, Three Ways

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So what’s your excuse?

We all have them – these everyday annoyances we tell ourselves are more important than what we should actually be doing.

I’m not talking about housework or taking the dog for a walk – I mean the things we really want and should be doing, but foolishly let life get in the way of, like switching careers or leaving a bad relationship or, say, writing this blog post right now.

Maybe it’s a financial excuse (who can afford to go back to school?) or a time excuse (who’s got time to be single?), but ultimately it all comes down to fear and frustration.

I’m afraid that people won’t read what I write or that what I do write won’t live up to what I wrote last time. I’m frustrated that what I love to do – tell stories – is going out of style in favour of shorter, punchier news bits that require little time or knowledge to read and understand.

And then come the excuses – the floor needs vacuumed, the tub needs scrubbed, dinner needs made, dishes need washed, lunch needs to be packed – and before I know it, it’s bedtime and I haven’t written so much as a word.

It should come easy. I spent four years in school learning to write and I’ve got five years’ experience writing for newspapers and magazines, yet somehow it’s so much easier for me to sit down at work and pump out 400 words on a musician or an entire column on pomegranates than it is for me to sit down and write for myself, which is, after all, what I spend all this time wanting to do.

At first I thought it was just writer’s block and that the dread that comes with staring at an empty page was just an unfortunate side effect of what I do. But upon closer inspection, I saw glaring examples of people around me letting the small stuff get in the way of their goals, too.

I see people staying in relationships because they’re scared of being single, or sticking it out at dead-end jobs because the idea of pushing themselves into something else seems like too much work. Or there’s my boyfriend, TJ, who insists that he needs to amass every possible piece of camera and lighting equipment before he can even power on his video camera to make a simple video.

It’s fear, yes, but there’s a comfort in sticking with what you know, even if it makes you terribly unhappy. Think back to the proudest moment of your life – chances are it didn’t happen because you stayed in your comfort zone.

So how do I get out of this funk? How do I get back to actually enjoying writing again and seeing it as a joy rather than a chore? I guess, like everything, I just have to do it, get it over with and then hope to God it gets easier the next time.

When I made these three low-sugar and low-fat granola recipes over a month ago (yep, it’s been that long), my boyfriend was openly skeptical. He took a bag to work out of desperation one morning when he didn’t have time to have breakfast, and halfway through the day, I got a text that read, simply, “make more.” The Pear & Walnut has become a favourite in our house, but I also like experimenting with whatever kind of dried fruit I can get my hands on at the bulk store – dried bananas, peaches, figs and mango are all great options.

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Pear & Walnut Granola
Makes 3 to 4 cups.

INGREDIENTS:
1 1/2 cups rolled oats
1 cup chopped dried pears
1/2 cup walnut pieces
1/4 cup pepitas (aka shelled pumpkin seeds)
1/4 cup plus 3 tbsp pure maple syrup
1 tbsp olive oil
1/4 tsp sea salt

INSTRUCTIONS:
1. Preheat oven to 325˚F.
2. In a large bowl, mix oats, pears, walnuts and pepitas. In a small bowl, whisk maple syrup, oil and salt. Drizzle over oat mixture and stir to coat.
3. Spread mixture on a large parchment-lined baking sheet and bake, stirring every 5 minutes, until oats are golden, 20 to 25 minutes. Let cool completely. Store in an airtight container or bag for up to a week.

Apple Pie Granola
Makes about 3 cups.

INGREDIENTS:
1 1/2 cups rolled oats
1 cup chopped dried apples
1/2 cup sliced almonds or walnut pieces
3 tbsp brown sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon
4 tsp honey
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/2 cup dried cranberries

INSTRUCTIONS:
1. Preheat oven to 325˚F.
2. In a large bowl, mix oats, apples, almonds, sugar and cinnamon. In a small bowl, whisk honey, vanilla and salt. Drizzle over oat mixture and stir to coat.
3. Spread mixture on a large parchment-lined baking sheet and bake until oats are golden, about 20 minutes. Let cool completely. Stir in cranberries. Store in an airtight container or bag for up to a week.

Coconut Papaya Granola
Makes about 3 cups.

INGREDIENTS:
1 cup rolled oats
1 cup chopped dried papaya
1/2 cup shredded dried coconut
1/4 cup honey
1 tbsp pure maple syrup
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/4 tsp sea salt

INSTRUCTIONS:
1. Preheat oven to 325˚F.
2. In a large bowl, mix oats, papaya and coconut. In a small bowl, whisk honey, maple syrup, oil, vanilla and salt. Drizzle over oat mixture and stir to coat.
3. Spread on a parchment-lined baking sheet and bake, stirring every 5 minutes, until oats are golden, about 20 minutes. Let cool completely. Store in an airtight container or bag for up to a week.

Enjoy!

1

Kale, Sweet Potato and Sausage Soup with White Beans

soup final

There are foods that sustain you, satiate and fulfill you. They can be delicious, hearty and satisfying – for some, it might be a creamy bowl of luscious pasta.

For me, it’s soup – soup tends to live in that same place in my heart as my Granny’s apple pie or my dad’s phenomenal weekend coffee. It’s not necessarily perfectly seasoned or cooked just right, but it soothes, comforts and ails in a way that makes everything seem alright, if even just for a spoonful.

It starts with the prep – I find comfort in the simple sautéeing of my favourite vegetables, followed by a quick deglaze with broth and some seasoning to hit that fine balance between salty and savory, hearty and slurp-worthy. Soup doesn’t ask for much; a quick simmer will do.

And then there’s that moment, that perfect second when your brimming ladle hits the bowl, offering up chunks of tender veggies, melt-in-your-mouth meat and full-bodied broth. It makes you wonder why you ever bother trying to make anything else, because this right here, this is the crescendo of comfort food.

I like this soup for its simplicity, but also for its use of seasonal ingredients in this blustery time of year. Kale and sweet potatoes are unbelievably bitter and sweet (and inexpensive!) during the winter months, and they really steal the show for vibrancy and flavour.

To round out this soup, I opted for simple ingredients I already had in my kitchen – sausage for oomph, mushrooms for flavour and white beans for extra creamy texture. You can go ahead and switch up the add-ins depending on what you have on hand, or you can make it vegetarian and double up on beans for extra filling protein and fiber. A curl of Parmesan is great as an indulgent garnish, but make it your own by playing around.

prep
Kale, Sweet Potato and Sausage Soup with White Beans
Serves 4 to 5.

To dress up this simple soup, serve with crusty bread and fresh Parmesan.

INGREDIENTS:

1 tbsp olive oil
1 large yellow onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
500 g uncooked mild sausage, casings removed and chopped into 1-inch chunks
1 cup sliced brown cremini mushrooms
2 small sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
4 cups chicken broth
3 to 4 cups chopped kale, stems and tough ribs removed
1 19-oz can white kidney or navy beans, drained and rinsed
Sea salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste

INSTRUCTIONS:

1. In a large pot or Dutch oven, heat oil on medium. Add onion and sauté, stirring frequently, until translucent. Add garlic and sauté until fragrant, about 1 more minute.

2. Add sausage and sauté until browned. Stir in mushrooms and potatoes and sauté until mushrooms soften, about 4 minutes.

3. Add broth and 3 cups water. Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook until potatoes are beginning to soften, about 10 minutes.

4. Stir in kale and beans and cook for 3 more minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Enjoy!

1

Maple Pecan Shortbread Cookies

mapleshortbreadsfinal

Where I come from, spring is marked each year by the ritual tapping of trees.

It’s a silent act; you rarely see them attaching their rustic metal buckets to the maples that dot the roads and form the woods of the county. You’re lucky to catch them at work, collecting the golden sap that later ends up in shiny bottles on local store shelves.

It’s one of few true labours of love I’ve ever seen. It’s intensive, barely profitable and time-consuming, but I don’t think you’ll ever meet a sap-maker who’s ever so much as considered not tapping each spring. And if you’ve had the pleasure of tasting fresh, still-warm maple syrup, you’ll understand why they do it – it’s nature’s pure unadulterated caramel.

When I was a kid, one of the highlights of the spring thaw was visiting the sugar camps in the height of the season. They were always out in the middle of nowhere, at least an hour’s drive away, but the anticipation of it all made every agonizing mile stuck in the back seat of the car well worth it.

I remember the steam bursting from the boiling buildings, visible as soon as you got within a five-mile radius of the camp. If you rolled down the window, you could smell the air perfumed with sugar.

Most of all, I remember the maple syrup lollypops – these were the highlight of each trip. Workers would bring a simmering bucket of syrup out to a wooden block filled with fresh snow – they’d drizzle steaming sap over the ice crystals as us kids jammed wooden sticks into the gooey mixture, swirling them around madly to get as much sugary syrup as gravity would allow. We’d rush to jam the lollypops into our mouths before they cooled down too much – the heat, after all, was the best part.

I still love everything about maple syrup – the rich, smooth texture and bold earthy-sweet taste. And that smell – one whiff of it and I’m home. If life were easy, I’d swear I’d ditch the city in a flash and give it all away for a sugar camp.

It was during one of these maple sugar daydreams that I dreamt up this twist on the classic shortbread. Each cookie has just a hint of maple, but when combined with this super-easy maple syrup glaze, it’s like you’ve died and gone to a sugar camp.

Rosettes

Pecans

Maple Pecan Shortbread Cookies
Makes 32 to 36 cookies.

Ingredients

3/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1/4 cup vegetable shortening, room temperature
1 1/2 cups icing sugar, sifted
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 – 1 1/2 tsp maple extract
1 egg plus 1 egg white
1 3/4 cup cake and pastry flour
1 3/4 cup bread flour
32 – 36 pecan halves

Glaze
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
1/2 cup icing sugar

Instructions

1. Preheat oven to 375˚F. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper.

2. In a stand mixer, cream butter and shortening until smooth. Gradually add sugar, stirring on low until light, fluffy and no lumps remain. Add maple extract and salt and stir until combined. Scrape down sides of bowl and gradually stir in eggs.

3. In a large bowl, sift flours. Gradually mix into batter until just combined. Working in batches, transfer batter to a piping bag fitted with a large star tip. Pipe batter in a tight, circular formation to form 1 1/2 inch-wide rosettes. Top with pecans and bake until bottoms are golden, 8 to 12 minutes.

(NOTE: If you’re not into piping, simply gather the dough into a ball, chill it for 30 minutes to an hour to firm up, then roll out and cut into 1/4-inch-thick rounds.)

4. Let cookies cool on sheets for 5 minutes, then transfer to wire racks to cool completely.

5. Prepare glaze: In a small saucepan, heat maple syrup on medium. Add to clean stand mixer and gradually mix in icing sugar until smooth and slightly thick. Let cool.

6. Once cookies and glaze are cool, transfer glaze to a re-sealable ziplock bag and seal tightly. Snip a small hole in one corner of bag. Using bag, drizzle glaze over cookies. Set aside until glaze is set.

Enjoy!

1

Spiced Pickled Beets

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My mom says I’m an old soul. My friends say I’m an 80 year-old, trapped in a 24 year-old’s body. Personally, I think I’m just kind of boring.

I’ve never really liked parties. I refuse to jaywalk because I think it sets a bad example for little kids. My favourite clothes usually involve stretchy waistbands. I’ll take Cary Grant over Channing Tatum any day. And I own an inordinate amount of mason jars.

So yeah, I’m basically an 80-year-old. And did I mention that I pickle?

In my defense, pickling is, at least in my opinion, quite “in” right now. We’re getting back to our grandmother’s way of doing things, in reaction to the now-obvious negative effects of chemical preservatives. Plus, it just tastes so good! Seriously, have you ever had store-bought pickled beets? Gross. But home-pickled beets, well, they are simply amazing.

In my mind, pickled beets are synonymous with my grandmother’s cooking. Her cramped little kitchen must have reeked of vinegar for the entire months of September and October, because the rate that she pumped out pickled beets was truly extraordinary.

She had cupboards of them, which she would inevitably open up every December to select a jar suitable for my family’s Christmas dinner. Her beets were always the perfect balance of sweet and tart, earthy and punchy, with minimal aftertaste. She cornered the market on the perfect beet.

These beets are based on one of her original recipes, so they share that punchy-earthy flavour combination. But for my beets, I wanted to incorporate some exotic, warm spices into the mix, so I prepared the brine with some whole cinnamon, cloves and star anise, which gives it a really nice licorice taste. This warm blend of spices lends a Christmasy feel to them, making them a great gift idea for the holidays.

spices prep

Spiced Pickled Beets
Makes 7 500-ml jars.

TOOLS:

-Home canning kit (I got this one at Canadian Tire for $50. It has everything you need to get started, and has more than paid for itself with all the money I’ve saved in giving away jam and beets as Christmas gifts!)
-7 500-ml glass mason jars and lids, sanitized
-Large stockpot
-Measuring cups and spoons

INGREDIENTS:

2 lb to 3 lb beets
9 cups white pickling vinegar
6 cups white granulated sugar
1 cup kosher salt
8 to 9 whole star anise
2 sticks cinnamon
2 1/2 to 3 tbsp whole cloves

INSTRUCTIONS:

1. In a large pot, boil beets until just fork-tender, about 30 minutes; do not over-boil. Drain, trim ends and peel away skin. Chop into desired size chunks (quartered or into 1 to 1 1/2-inch cubes).

2. Meanwhile, in a large stockpot, combine vinegar, sugar, salt, star anise, cinnamon, cloves and 3 cups cold water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 5 to 10 minutes. Strain through a fine mesh sieve.

3. Divide beets among jars. Pour vinegar mixture into jars, filling within 1/4 inch of rims. (NOTE: You may have some left over.) Remove air bubbles with a non-metallic wand and wipe rims with a clean dish cloth. Seal and place in canner with boiling water for 30 minutes. Carefully remove from canner and let sit undisturbed for 24 hours; seals will pop down during this time. If seals of any jars do not pop down, simply consume those beets within 3 to 4 days. Beets are best served cold.

Enjoy!

0

Apple Pie Cookies

Historically, I haven’t been very good at taking care of myself. I eat well and I exercise, but I’ve never really paid attention to what I really need, which is something a little less superficial.

Because every once in a while, I feel myself slipping. It’s tempting to ignore, to pretend it’s not lurking there under the surface. A really good counselor once told me that I need to make appointments with myself. Write it in your day planner, she said. “7 pm – 7:45 pm: Read a book/watch tv/go for a walk. Whatever you want.”

Except I never did it. And here I am, six years later, still struggling with the same issues that brought her to give me that advice. So call this an early New Years’ resolution, or my own personal Happiness Project of sorts, but as of today, I’m going to take care of myself.

After much consideration, deliberation and flat-out day-dreaming, I have come to the conclusion that the key to keeping my sanity, staying cool and being myself lies within the following items/events/random compilation of things I like:

Evenings. I love ‘em. Cozy jammies, hot tea and a good book are heaven to me. For some reason, they never seem to feel as good when the sun’s out.

Cat Cuddles. If you’ve ever so much as ran into me on the subway platform, you probably gained from my fur-covered pea coat that I like to spend quality kitty time.

Writing. It should come as no surprise that writing is my therapy – there’s something cathartic about transforming the dozens of thoughts that race through my mind at once into words that I can organize into logical sense.

Water. I was born in what was literally called a “cottage” hospital beside the Gulf of St. Lawrence on Newfoundland’s north west coast. I grew up in a small town known for having the highest tides in the world. I don’t think I’ve ever been able to shake that intrinsic need to be near water, and I’ll never fully understand the sense of belonging that comes over me when I hear the sound of a tide lapping against a nearby rock.

Jodi Picoult. Yeah, yeah, she’s hardly Jane Austen, but I’ll be damned if I can put one of her books down once I’ve opened the paperback spine.

Mashed Potatoes. Only my boyfriend knows this about me, but when I’m really stressed, I’ve been known to fill a bowl with a heaping pile of mashed potatoes, gravy and as much cheese as I can rummage from the fridge – then microwave the lot until it’s greasy and bubbling. There is nothing better.

Apples. When I was a kid, I would buzz through these by the bushel. Some of my clearest memories are from visiting the apple stands that would dot the country road not far from where I grew up. The smell of the Jonagolds, Galas and Spartans would drive me into such a frenzy that my dad would have to pull over the car before we got home just to wash one off for me to eat right then and there.

Pie. What’s not to love about a flaky crust and warm juicy filling with a heaping, melting scoop of vanilla bean ice cream on top?

Cookies. There’s just something so irresistible about a dessert you can palm. I love them moist and chewy, with lots and lots of rich chocolate chunks.

So whether it’s enjoying an evening on my couch with a book (perhaps with a furry cat nestled on my lap) or taking a walk down to the lake, I’m going to make at least one of these things part of my everyday.

Which brings me to the topic of this post – to get a jumpstart on this daily task, I’ve compiled three of my absolute favourite things – apples, pie and cookies – into these adorable little treats.

I can’t take credit for the idea – they were inspired by the apple pie cookies at this cozy restaurant around the corner from my apartment called The Good Fork. If you’re ever in Toronto’s Bloor West Village, check them out. Or you can save yourself the trip and just make these pies yourself.

They’re a lot easier than they might look – once your dough is made and chilled, roll it out very thin. If it’s too thick, your cookies will be too dense, and that’s no fun. Then you punch out the circles, dollop some apple filling on top and cover with a second circle. Voila! Apple pie cookies!

Apple Pie Cookies
Makes 30 to 36 cookies.

INGREDIENTS:

5 1/4 cups flour, plus additional for dusting
1 tbsp plus 1/4 tsp sea salt, divided
2 tbsp plus 1/3 cup granulated sugar, divided
1 lb shortening, chilled
2 large eggs, divided
2 Gala apples, peeled and diced (1/4 inch)
1 tbsp cornstarch
2 tsp brown sugar
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground allspice
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/8 tsp ground clove

INSTRUCTIONS:

1. In a large bowl, whisk flour, 1 tbsp salt and 1 tbsp granulated sugar. With a pastry cutter, cut in shortening until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.

2. In a small bowl or measuring cup, beat 1 egg and enough cold water to make 1 cup. Slowly add to flour mixture, mixing with a fork; add only enough liquid to make the pastry form a ball.

3. Turn pastry onto floured cutting board and knead until mixture is just smooth; do not over-mix. Divide into thirds and refrigerate for one hour.

4. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, combine apples, 1/3 cup granulated sugar, cornstarch, brown sugar, cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, 1/4 tsp salt and clove, stirring to coat. Refrigerate until ready to use. (TIP: If refrigerating for a while, drizzle with a few drops of lemon to prevent apples from browning.)

5. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Dust work surface with flour. Roll one-third of dough about 1/8-inch thick. The dough should be thin and pliable, but thick enough to hold the filling. With a 2-inch round cookie cutter, punch out circles and transfer to parchment-lined baking sheets. Repeat with remaining dough.

6. In a small bowl, beat remaining 1 egg. To assemble cookies, spoon about 1 heaping tablespoon of apple mixture into center of 1 dough circle. Take a second dough circle and brush its underside edges with egg. Place over top of filling, pressing edges to seal. Push the tines of the back of a fork up against edges of cookie to seal completely. Cut 4 slits in top of cookie. Repeat with remaining dough circles and apple mixture.

7. Brush tops with egg and sprinkle with remaining 1 tbsp sugar. Bake for 25 minutes, until tops are golden. Let cool on sheets for 10 to 15 minutes, then transfer to wire racks.

I love them served warm with ice cream, but they’re a great on-the-go snack, too. Enjoy!