Good Lady Apples Bon Femme

| September 17, 2011

Episode 112: Fruit Fete
Recipe: Good Lady Apples Bon Femme

For these baked apples, ubiquitous in home cooking as well as in country inns and restaurants, only a few ingredients are needed. Inexpensive and quickly prepared, the dish can be made year round. Use an apple that will keep its shape during cooking, such as Golden or Red Delicious, russet, Granny Smith, or Pippin.

The apples look best when they have just emerged from the oven, puffed from the heat and glossy with rich color. But it’s best to serve them barely lukewarm, even though they will shrivel a bit as they cool. If you have leftovers, the apples can be reheated the next day (baste them with the juice). These are delicious served with a slice of pound cake or with sour cream.

The mixture of apricot jam, maple syrup, and butter makes a flavorful sauce. If you don’t have maple syrup, substitute granulated sugar. You could also add lemon juice and cinnamon, mace, nutmeg, or any other spice that you like.

Good Lady Apples Bon Femme

Serves 6

6 large apples (2 pounds)
1/3 cup apricot jam
1/3 cup light maple syrup
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into
6 pieces

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Using a corer or a knife, core apples. Be sure to plunge the corer or knife straight down so that it doesn’t miss the core (if this happens, use the corer or knife to remove any remaining seeds).

With the point of a knife, make an incision in the skin about a third of the way down each apple and cut through the skin 1/8 to 1/4 inch deep all around. As the apple cooks, the flesh expands and the part of the apple above this cut will lift up like a lid. Without this scoring, the apple could burst.

Arrange the apples in a gratin dish or other baking dish that is attractive enough to be brought to the table. Coat the apples with the apricot jam and maple syrup and dot with the butter. Bake for 30 minutes.

Baste the apples with the juice, and cook for another 30 minutes. The apples should be cooked throughout — plump, brown, and soft to the touch. Let cool to lukewarm before serving.

Copyright © 2011 by Jacques Pépin. Used by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved.


Category: dessert, fruit, Recipes

About the Author ()

I was the Senior Digital Producer for KQED Food up until July, 2018.  Since 2001, I designed, produced, managed and contributed to mostly food-related websites and blogs for KQED including:; KQED Food; Bay Area Bites; Check, Please! Bay Area;  Taste This; Celebrity Chefs; seven of Jacques Pepin's TV series websites; and Joanne Weir's Cooking in the City. I initiated the majority of KQED Food's social media feeds and maintained them up until 2017.  As far as content creation,  photography is my passion and I also shoot video and write stories. My photos have been used in articles for KQED Food, News, Arts, and Science as well as for promotional purposes in print and online. Professional education and training includes: clinical psychology, photography, commercial cooking, web design, information architecture and UX.

Comments (4)

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  1. Jan O says:

    Tried this last night and it was awesome. I was making for just 2, so altered the proportions and worked from memory – never a good idea. Anyway I accidentally used maple syrup and honey with the apricot jam. Cooked as directed (found recipe by then) and they were fantastic!

    Jacques, you are my hero!

  2. Rowallan says:

    I’m looking forward to making that delicious Good Lady Apples Bon Femme. However, when I viewed Jacques preparing them, I believe he placed slices of bread under the apples and said that the bread soaked up the delicious juice as they baked. The recipe shown on his site doesn’t mention that.
    Was it overlooked? I want to make it the way he did.
    Thank you.

  3. A Friend says:

    Please correct the name of the recipe:  Bonne Femme
    Also, please correct the recipe to include the slices of bread mentioned on television.
    I admire M. Pepin greatly.  In my opinion, he is the very best chef in America.  He also displays his great heart and love for what he does.  I admire him so very much.  What fun to be part of his family, it must be.

  4. N Payne says:

    He did mention on the show to place the apples on slices of
    stale bread, and he also cut a little off the bottom of the apples to make more
    a flat surface for them to stand on.