Cardamom & Cocoa Baked Apples

I was on a cardamom kick all week, which is so weird because I’ve never cooked with it. Maybe I used the pods once in a curry but I never used the ground cardamom nor have I ever made it the star of a dish. So why the obsession now? Let me introduce you to my weird quirk #995. Sometimes I come across a recipe that is so beautiful and looks so delicious sounding that I forget about the reality and get lost in the recipe. So when I stumbled across a recipe for some cardamom cake, I got it into my head that I MUST try it this week! I tried to make my own cake from scratch. And since this post isn’t about that cake, you can imagine how that turned out. My Kitchen disaster post is going to be quite long, I’m just warning you!

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So cardamom. What is it? You may have seen the pods at the supermarket or at specialty stores. It’s an exotic spice popular in Scandinavian and East Indian countries. While cardamom pods are usually more often used in syrups and curries, the seeds can be ground although it loses much of its flavor. Luckily, I didn’t need an overpowering flavor so I used the ground spices. Also I don’t have a spice grinder. If I were being interrogated, this is where the policeman would dubiously say “hmmm…that’s a convenient way to cover up your laziness.”

Anyway so cardamom is a bit more exotic and expensive than regular spices, but because even the ground seeds can be overpowering, you should use it sparingly. It goes well with citrus, pistachios and mild flavours but also pairs well with heavier flavours like curry and cinnamon. 

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Cardamom Pods

After much deliberation, I quite happily settled on baked apples with cocoa and cardamom. It’s a dessert that takes less than 5 minutes to prepare and is made in those cute little individually wrapped foil packets so you can easily serve it at a dinner party – stick it in the oven before you sit to eat dinner and by the time you’re ready for dessert, each guest has their individual packet to open up. It’s very cool. You can easily scale this up or down – use even one apple and serve it as part of a intimate meal for two. Its still healthy so I’m not going to lie…I had it for breakfast… 

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That’s all you need!

I’ve always seen baked apple recipes but it’s been full of cinnamon and nutmeg and all those heavy spices and I’ve personally found that combination on a regular basis a bit cloying. The beauty with Apples though is that because it has such a mild flavor, you can switch up the spices and they go together nicely. I found that the cardamom and chocolate give off a surprisingly savoury-sweet flavor rather than a one-note sweetness. It’s pretty aromatic as well and it filled my kitchen with a warm, homely scent. I half expected to pull a Thanksgiving turkey out the oven 🙂 I’m bringing this to Fiesta Friday as well. 

Cardamom & Cocoa Baked Apples

Ingredients

Serves 2

1 Apple of your choice (I used Gala)

2 Pinches of Cardamom

2 Bigger Pinches of Cocoa Powder

Whipped Cream or Ice Cream (optional, for serving, but I highly recommend you use it)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Tear two sheets of foil large enough to fold into packets. Slice apples into 1/8-1/4 inch slices and toss with cardamom & cocoa. Divide in half and place a portion into each foil sheet. Fold the ends up and pinch together and pinch sides closed. Ensure that entire packet is properly sealed. Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes.

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Wait for iiiiiittt….

That’s all! Please be careful when you open the packets because there will be lots of steam. I know a cardamom facial sounds like something that super rich people do, but let’s not try that, okay?

I say serve with whipped cream, Rabin says it doesn’t add anything to it. Can you please try it and help us break this stalemate? Image

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26 comments

  1. Love the little packet idea…I entertain quite a lot and I’ve never thought to serve dessert in this way. Thanks for sharing! As for the recipe itself…it sounds delicious 🙂 Proof that sometimes all it takes is a few simple ingredients to reach perfection!

  2. I use cardamom quite a lot, and can almost smell the baking apple with those spices. What a great way to use it. I am thinking about the whipped cream debate but not coming down on either side. Maybe just offer a dish on the side and let each person decide.

    • Thanks Hilda. I’d love to check out some of your cardamom recipes as well since I feel like its one of the most underutilized spices in my cabinet. That’s a good suggestion with the whipped cream as well!

  3. That’s exactly the way I am! Once I get a recipe in my mind, I simply have to make it! Now i feel inspired to make something with cardamom 😀 Thanks for sharing!

  4. Every night I find myself looking for a quick dessert to eat but not wanting to something heavy that late. This sounds like the perfect things for me at that time!

  5. Beautiful dish to bring to FF, Indira! I could smell the cardamom wafting through the door when you walked in! Honestly cardamom is one of my favourite spices! As for the whipped cream debate – I’d go with the cream any day! But hey, we can do a little experiment. We’ll just put the whipped cream bowl beside the apples and see how many of the FF gang top off the apples with the cream! What do you think? 😀

  6. That is a really neat dinner party idea! I’m saving this for our next dinner, thanks for sharing! Oh, and it looks like the Fiesta Friday gang liked this too! 🙂

  7. Cardamom facial! Hahaha! You’re so funny, Indira, and talented by the looks of this simple, but super flavorful dessert. I’m not sure this will last long enough for me to put whipped cream on it. I usually am one to eat things when they are piping hot (and I’m super impatient for my desserts!).

    • Aww thanks Ngan, you’re too sweet! I know exactly what you mean. The apples were delicious hot and the cool whipped cream lasted for about a second before it melted, but the whipped cream soup was also quite delicious 🙂

  8. I love these! I have always neglected cardamom, but I knew when I tried and loved a friend’s authentic Indian chai tea with cardamom pods in it that I was going to need to learn to incorporate this delicious, aromatic seasoning in my cooking. And this is the perfect, easy, healthy way to start! Put a vote in for whipped cream from me!

    • Thank you! Yep, I’m familiar with cardamom in chai and also syrups, but its nice to switch it up once in a while. Let me know if you come across any good cardamom recipes. I’m always looking for new ways to use it!

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