Apple chips. Snore. It seems like everyone has done them. Slice and dry. Been there done that. And if you have read any of my other posts the usual really isn't quite good enough for me. As one of my grandmother's favorite culinary TV personalities Emeril Lagasse would say, "Let's crank it up a notch!"
And crank it up a notch I did!!! Good bye mundane apple chippiness. A soak in some vinegar spiced sugar solution. A sprinkle of poppy seeds. Bam! A more sophisticated adult version of the everyday kiddie lunchbox snack.
The key to this chip is in the vinegar sugar solution. Obviously the sweet and tart with the apple works but the infusion of vanilla bean, cloves and cinnamon is really where we make these chips snap, crackle and pop. All you do is boil the vinegar, water and sugar, throw in the spices and let the mixture infuse until cool. Then give the lil' apples a dip, throw em' on some racks, season with the poppy seeds for a satisfying bonus crunch and viola!
If you aren't to keen on the poppy seed component, leave them out. DO use the vinegar sugar dip though. It really brightens the apple's flavor and makes them even more lip smacking delectable! So go for it. Be a little bold with your apple chips and doctor them up. Perhaps not quite how Emeril Lagasse would do his apple chips but we sure did crank er' up a notch!
Spiced Poppy Seed Apple Chips
3 pints of apple chips
- 10-12 medium to large sized crisp eating apples (leave those mealy ones for pies please!)
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar or white wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons of sugar
- 1 each: cinnamon stick, vanilla bean
- 3 cloves
- 3-4 tablespoons poppy seeds
1. Combine the water, vinegar and sugar in a small saucepan and bring to a gentle simmer, stirring to ensure the sugar won't burn. When simmering add the cinnamon stick, vanilla bean and cloves to the mixture and simmer for 3-5 minutes. Remove from the heat, pour in a glass bowl and leave to cool.
2. Next, wash your apples. One by one, core them and cut them into thinly sliced wedges no larger than 1/4" thick. A mandolin would work great here but is not necessary. After each apple, immediately put the slices in the vinegar solution. It is important to do this one apple at a time or you will get brown apple slices.
3. Let the apples infuse for a moment then take them out and spread on dehydrator racks. When you have completed a rack sprinkle poppy seeds over the apples and place in your dehydrator. Repeat until you have finished all the apples.
4. When all the apple chips have been sliced, dipped and sprinkled. Set your last remaining dehydrator try in the dehydrator and place on the fruit setting at about 135ºF. Alternatively place in your oven on racks at the same temperature.
5. The chips take anywhere from 6-15 hours depending upon your dehydrator and how thick you cut your apple slices. You will want the chips crisp and not flaccid so check every 2 hours after the 6 hour mark to test for doneness.
6. When the chips are done allow them to cool and place in airtight containers for safe keeping.