Papa Al Popovers – With Cinnamon Apples

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I’ve been meaning to do a recipe dedication for some time now. I made these popovers, enjoyed them and only when I was looking at the photo did the connection become apparent to me. My 91-year-old grandfather passed away a few weeks ago. He lived a pretty incredible life. He loved his family, his job at his accounting firm and, of course, he loved food. He craved key lime pie and matzo ball soup. He loved sweets and preferred his food piping hot. And he especially loved anything homemade.

I wish I could’ve made a whole pie in his honor – I made one for him and my grandma some time ago, and I think it took them a whole month to eat it. Instead, I made brunch for my friends yesterday morning. I served leftover bagels with addictively savory scallion cream cheese, my favorite raspberry coffee cake and these apple cinnamon popovers. And I obviously ended up with even more food than I was trying to get rid of.

In the end, it didn’t matter. I am so grateful to have friends who are there for me no matter what is going on in my life. From what I saw this past week, Papa Al had some pretty amazing friends and family, too. Just like these popovers, he was incredibly tall, sweet and full of surprises. On the outside, he always looked so serious – it was hard to get a smile out of him at times. But he was genuinely a really funny person. He amazed us with the hilarious comments he slipped in when we least expected it.

I said in my speech at the funeral that I feel it is a shame we wait until someone passes away to tell everyone else how wonderful they were. I really meant that. So, I’m going to start a series of blog posts dedicated to people in my life who are important to me. I can’t promise how often I’ll post, but I can promise that each recipe will be meaningful in some way. If you just can’t get enough of me, check out more of my recipes at Chicago Foodies.

Now, on to the recipe. These were surprisingly easy to make. I don’t think mine turned out quite as the recipe intended, since the apples sunk to the bottom. Regardless, they were delicious, and I’d definitely make them again. Popovers are like a mix between a muffin and a pancake. They look beautiful as they come out of the oven, and then they instantly deflate. I would recommend using a special popover pan when you’re baking them (a gift from my friends, of course), but a large muffin pan should do fine, too.

Cinnamon Apple Popovers
Adapted from KatieBrown.com

Serves 6

2 eggs
1 cup milk
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp butter, melted

Apple filling:
3 apples
2 tbsp butter
1/2 cup brown or turbinado sugar
1 tsp cinnamon

  1. Peel apples and slice finely. I cut mine in thin strips and then halved them.
  2. Saute in butter until soft and lightly browned. Then, add cinnamon and brown sugar until melted.
  3. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
  4. In a large bowl, whisk together eggs and milk. Add in flour,  sugar, salt and melted butter until batter is smooth.
  5. Spray popover pan well and fill each cup with some of the apple mixture. Put in the preheated oven for 5 minutes to warm up.
  6. Remove pan from oven, and pour batter over apples until it is almost full. If you’re using a regular muffin tin, you will definitely want to fill it up less.
  7. Bake for 10 minutes. Then, reduce heat to 375 degrees F and bake for another 15 minutes, or until they have popped over the top and are golden brown. Serve immediately. Don’t burn the roof of your mouth.
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3 responses »

  1. Marly Dear,
    I just read your article and think that it was absolutely outstanding. THe Papa Al Popovers was the those most original idea. He would have been so proud that you named these popovers after him.
    I can taste them myself from your description. You are a wonderful girl and a wonderful writer and I wish you the best of luck in everything that you do. Thank you sweetheart. See you soon.

    I love you,

    Grandma Glo

  2. I love this, Mar! So sweet and might have to make them just for Papa Al! Miss you and love you so much…and LOVE YOU Grandma Glo!

  3. My Dear Marly,
    What a wonderful testemonial to your grandpa Al. I know he would have been so proud too.
    I can’t wait to make them. You are truly an inspiration to your family and peers. I am so happy you are my niece and look forward to another special visit again.
    Love you, Aunt Eunice

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