I am not a native of Lancaster County, but I have lived here enough decades to consider myself a Lancastrian.

How does one know that they are a Lancasterian?  Here's how I know...I don't mind the smell of "dairy air" in the spring... I know the tractor pulls are at "The Buck"... I go to market... I roll my eyes at anyone who mispronounces Lancaster (Lank'aster is correct).. I've eaten stuffed pig stomach (bless my soul!)... I go to our local fair like it is a pilgrimage...I know at least a dozen Herr's (sadly not related to any of them, that would have qualified me immediately)... in the summer I give directions to tourists... I know all the best farms to get plants and pumpkins and homemade bread... I make my own jam and applesauce ... I shop at the Outlets... and I know about the Amish. There are about 100 more qualifications...we will save some for another time!

I also know that making and  eating Apple Dumplings, especially for dinner or breakfast, is a time honored tradition of many Lancaster County families. Served with milk in a big shallow bowl, an Apple Dumpling rises above pie status and becomes a countywide culinary treasure... a beloved part of our gastronomic heritage! Seriously, I am not overstating this! I found this so odd when I first moved to Lancaster. Being served "dessert" as a meal takes some getting used to.

But, not any more... Apple Dumplings are one of the best parts of being from Lancaster!

The recipe is very straightforward and so delicious!

I hope you will consider yourself an honorary Lancasterian and make Apple Dumplings for a breakfast or dinner.

Apple Dumplings
6 apples (any variety except Delicious)
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
2 TBS butter, softened
pie dough, enough for 1 double crust
egg wash
sanding sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Make pie dough. Click HERE for my very favorite Martha Stewart's Pie dough (pate brisee). Refrigerate. You can also cheat and use a ready made pie dough.

In a small bowl , mix brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and butter. Set aside.

Core apples.

Peel apples.

Take half the pie dough and roll it out. Cut it into 4 pieces. Roll out the second half of the dough and cut it into halves, and one half into half again.

Put the apple in the center of the dough.

Fill the whole in the apple with the sugar mixture.

Bring the dough up around the apple and press together.

Repeat for all the apples and put them on a parchment lined baking sheet.

Make an egg wash with 1 beaten egg and 1 TBS water, mix well. Brush on apple dumplings.

Cut 12 leaves out of the remaining dough and brush them with egg wash. Fix the leaves  to the top of the apple dumpling.
Sprinkle with sanding sugar.

Bake for 45-50 minutes until golden brown.

Serve hot in a shallow bowl with milk.

Thoroughly enjoy without guilt!

Congratulations... you are on your way to being a Lancasterian!


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