Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Rosh Hashanah Recipe: Grilled Mansanada (Honey-Spiced Apples)

Mansanada spiced apples with honey
Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, begins at sunset on September 4th and ends at nightfall on September 6th. Apples sweetened with honey are a traditional food served to celebrate the holiday, and my inspiration for the following recipe is a Sephardic (from North Africa & Spain) treat called Mansanada.

Traditional mansanada is cooked on the stove to a consistency similar to chunky applesauce. I've changed things up by cooking the apples on the grill -- in fact, I prepared this over the Labor Day weekend for dessert one evening, and it's a wonderful way to end a barbecue or cookout regardless of whether you're celebrating Rosh Hashanah or aren't even Jewish.

My version below is enough for 4 to 6 people, and you can always refrigerate the leftovers to enjoy as a sweet snack (or even with breakfast) the next day. You can probably increase the ingredients and adjust the quantities to suit your tastes and needs. My Grilled Mansanada was delightful hot off the grill and spooned over a couple of scoops of vanilla ice cream, as shown in the photo at the end of this post. You can also serve it as an accompaniment to meat or chicken (or pork if you're not keeping kosher).

4 apples, preferably a good variety for baking
Grilled apples for Sephardic mansanada
Oil or cooking spray
1/4 tsp ground cardamom, cloves or cinnamon (I chose cardamom this time)
dash of ground nutmeg
1/4 cup honey

Quarter the apples and cut out the core & stem. Cut quarters into smaller chunks and place in a bowl. Drizzle or spray the apple chunks very lightly with oil, gently stirring or turning to coat all sides. Sprinkle with the spice of your choice plus the nutmeg.

Cut a sheet of aluminum foil that's large enough to be folded up into a "package" to hold the apples in about a single layer (if your apples were large, you may need two sheets of foil to make two packages each holding half the apples - see photo on right above). Spoon the apples into the center of the foil, then turn the sides of the foil up and fold the edges together to form a package or envelope holding the seasoned apples. Place this on your grill, seam-side up, over indirect low/medium heat and grill for about 15 minutes, until apples feel soft through the foil. Carefully unfold the seam to open the package slightly and continue grilling until lightly golden, about 5 more minutes.

grilled mansanada spiced apples with honey served with ice cream
Remove foil packet(s) and transfer the apples with their juices into the bowl. Pour in the honey and gently stir to combine. Serve in bowls, or spooned over vanilla ice cream, as shown on left.

Zestfully yours,

PS: Did you know that the Carolina Sauces online store carries a wide selection of kosher sauces and seasonings including hot sauce, ketchup, mustard and more? In fact, one of the must popular brands we offer, Bone Suckin' Sauce, makes kosher BBQ sauce and many other Kosher products! To browse our entire Kosher selection, simply click here.

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