As autumn approaches, the ripe peaches, mangos and berries of summer fall away, leaving space for one fruit to shine in its full glory: apples.
Even though apples are quite rare in Hale Pule’s home base of Kaua’i, we still enjoy the sweetness of this lovely fruit in the autumn. That’s why we were so pleased to find that some fellow farmers on Maui have begun to grow apples – what a blessing to add this to the variety of tropical fruits we enjoy for breakfast each day. We created this recipe for stewed apples as a way to thank these apple growers and honor the transition into autumn.
Vata season corresponds with autumn. Vata dosha, which is naturally dry, light and cool, can be aggravated by the crunch and astringency of apples, so it’s no wonder people often cook apples in autumn recipes. Cooking allows us to calm vata with a warm, sweet dish that is perfect for breakfast or a snack.
There are so many variations for this simple Ayurvedic recipe. Pears are a nice substitute in this dish. We’ve included mint in this recipe, but as the weather grows cooler, leave that out and increase the more warming cinnamon to keep vata at bay. Want to build ojas? Add a few fresh, pitted dates. And if it’s applesauce you desire, just follow the recipe below and blend before serving.
We encourage you to make this recipe your own. Leave us a comment with the variations you liked the best.
Vata-calming stewed apples
4 medium apples, any variety
2 Tbsp. ghee
1/4 tsp. sweet cinnamon
1/2 tsp. cardamom powder
1/4 tsp. dried mint or 1 Tbsp. fresh chopped mint
1/2 tsp. fresh, grated ginger
Chop and core the apples (you can leave the skin on if you know they are organic). Meanwhile, warm the ghee in a saucepan and add the ginger, cooking until the aroma comes up. Add the sweet cinnamon, cardamom and mint and simmer 1 to 2 minutes until fragrant. Add the apples and stir to coat with spices. Add water to ½ the height of the apples and cook gently until the apples are slightly soft. Serve with some of the cooking liquid to bring the full flavor of autumn to your plate.