When I was little, I hated apples for no good reason. I believe I even had a slight case of dyslexia when it came to the word “apple” because I always wanted to say “red” instead. Applesauce was okay, but eating a whole apple seemed strange. I loved apple pie, but only when it was served with a disproportionately large scoop of vanilla bean ice cream. My mother baked apples, cored with sugar and cinnamon. These were delicious because the mushy fruit no longer resembled an apple when it came out of the oven, scenting the entire house of autumn. Even though I gradually outgrew my disinterest in apples, I didn’t start eating whole apples until I got to college. Regardless of my delayed appreciation for apples (and yes, I realize that this delay makes me a bit crazy), I still associate apples with fall, and fall with apples.
It’s hard to believe it’s fall in the Northern Hemisphere while I get to experience a second spring, with 80 degree weather in Australia. I’m not complaining, but the lack of foliage is strange. If I were home, I’d likely be cooking up some Apple Cinnamon Streusel Muffins (Erica’s Sweet Tooth) or some Apple Cinnamon Cookies with Maple Cinnamon Glaze (How To Simplify).
Or perhaps I’d just bake some apples with my mom, and serve them with a big scoop of vanilla bean ice cream…
Now, about pumpkins, another autumnal culinary symbol. Pumpkin, in the United States, means fall. Pumpkin, in Australia, is a staple in foods. It’s not reserved for autumn, or Halloween carvings, or even pies. Instead, pumpkin is a topping for pizza, a filling for sandwiches, and the base for many soups. I like pumpkin, don’t get me wrong, but maybe not on my pizza. I’d rather go for some Pumpkin Gingersnap Cookies (Two Peas and Their Pod) or Pumpkin Cheesecake Bites (Eat, Live, Run). Too bad I don’t have an oven. Thankfully, I could still make some oven-less Pumpkin Gnocchi (Shape).