With delicious recipes, culinary advice and nutritional facts, Supergrains is the complete guide to the world’s healthiest grains.
Eating more of the right kinds of grains is an easy way to better health. Whole grains are packed with nutrients including protein, antioxidants, B-vitamins, fibre and trace minerals. A diet rich in these grains reduces the risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, obesity and some forms of cancer.
Grains are also one of the most tasty, versatile and nutritious food sources available – a delight to eat, easy to cook and very economical. Supergrains explores grains from all over the world, provides an in-depth look at their culinary uses and nutritional benefits and features over 150 recipes so that you can easily incorporate more of these superfoods into your diet – from breakfast through to dinner and warming bedtime drinks.
Baked caramel apples with spelt
You know all those low-cal, low-fat recipes for baked apples? The depressing sort with artificial sweetener and a dollop of zero-flavor yogurt? This isn’t anything like those—it’s a proper homely, rib-sticking, country comfort sort of dessert that will look all the better if you serve it wearing an apron. Having grown up in Australia, my default cooking apple is a Granny Smith, rather than the English favorite, the Bramley. The not-too-sweet Granny Smith’s size is more amenable to individual servings and the flesh doesn’t disintegrate on cooking.
¼ cup pearled spelt
4 Granny Smith apples
½ cup walnuts, chopped
1/3 cup raisins
¼ cup firmly packed brown sugar
3 ½ tbsp butter, plus extra for greasing
½ cup apple juice, sherry, or brandy
heavy cream or custard, to serve
Put the spelt in a small saucepan and cover generously with water. Simmer for 15 minutes, until the grains are almost tender, then drain and refresh under cold running water.
Heat the oven to 350°F. Remove the apple cores and score the skin around the middle of each fruit. Place them in a lightly greased ovenproof dish.
Mix the walnuts, raisins, sugar, butter, and half the cooked spelt together. Use this mixture to firmly stuff the apples, letting it spill out over the top. Spoon the remainder of the spelt around the base of the baking dish and pour in the apple juice or alcohol.
Bake for 30 minutes, basting occasionally, then remove from the oven and let stand for 10 minutes before serving with cream or custard.
If you prefer a spicier flavor, add 1–2 tsp ground cinnamon, ginger, and/or mixed spice. You can also stud each apple with 3 cloves—this gives a great flavor, but do remember to remove them before serving.
Finely grated lemon and orange zests make good additions to the filling.
Instead of spelt, you could use farro, Kamut, pearl barley, or whole oats and adjust the parboiling period accordingly. Pecans or chopped whole almonds are the best alternative nuts.
The amount of liquid you’ll need will vary according to the size of your baking dish. Don’t choose one so big that it spreads out and evaporates rapidly in the oven; just a little space around the apples is ideal.