I’ve made this for years as a snack or a dessert or occasionally even a lunch when I had nothing else in the house. It’s warm and sweet and wonderful.
Apples - I like Pink Ladies, Granny Smiths. I prefer a more crisp apple, but I remember my mom making these with every kind, even the yellow ones when I was a kid, so experiment! Use whatever kind makes you happy. As many as you want. I usually do at least two because one is too much work for one apple. You could probably even use pre-sliced apple slices and use this to jazz them up a bit.
Sugar - About two tablespoons per apple, give or take. I like the way brown sugar goes with apples. You could probably very easily use white sugar, too, though. You could also use a brown/white sugar mixture, with a tablespoon of each.
Cinnamon - As much as you like. About a quarter teaspoon for two apples works if you’re going to do the measuring thing.
Butter/margarine - I use margarine because I’m cheap, but call it butter because the English language is strange.
Baking dish - I use an 8 x 8 glass baking dish for two apples and that would probably work just find for up to 4. Then you’d probably need a bit more room. Use whatever works for you.
Knife for cutting the apples up; apple corer if that makes your life easier; I imagine that you could use an apple wedger like this if you were okay with larger apple slices.
Vegetable peeler - I like my apples peeled. If you’re okay with apple skin, all the more power to you!
You also might want something to scoop the apples with because they will be really hot, and oven mitts or towels to keep yourself safe.
1. Peel your apples if you want to. (Tip: Peel them directly into a garbage bag and toss the core and what-not in as you go along. Then just throw the whole thing out! Do not throw out the vegetable peeler. Which I have done. Twice.) Cut the apples into slices or use an apple wedger or skip this step entirely if you’re using pre-cup. I like slices about a quarter of an inch, half a centimeter, but this is totally up to you.
2. This is usually when I turn the oven on to preheat, but my oven is broken and only has one setting, the surface of the sun, so you could preheat from the beginning if you want. It’s not really a huge deal if you forget. This is forgiving. 350*F should work fine, maybe go down to 300 and cook for longer if your apples are larger.
Now, you can go two ways with this depending on how much energy you have/how many dishes you want to do.
A. Measure one tablespoon of brown sugar and one tablespoon of white sugar into a bowl, mix in a quarter teaspoon of cinnamon, and coat your apple slices with it. Usually for me, this involves mixing the sugar-mixture in a smaller bowl and sprinkling the apples and stirring and I end up with two dishes dirty.
B. Throw the apples into a big(gish) bowl, dump a few spoonfuls of brown sugar (because I’m out of white sugar, I don’t think it really matters besides that the white sugar makes the brown slightly less clumpy) over them and mix. Add more if you need more until the apples slices are coated. Shake the cinnamon over it until it looks good and coated. Give the apples another mix (or, my approach, toss them around in the bowl) until it looks good and call it good enough because you’re getting tired of standing and your back hurts.
Either way is fine, though :P
3. Use a spoon to grab a glob of butter/margarine. I never measure this, honestly. I just use a large spoon (like the eating tablespoons, not the measuring tablespoons), scoop some out of the dish and plop it into the baking dish. Use the spoon to smear it around until it’s coated. This so doesn’t need to be precise. However you think it looks good, it probably is.
4. Dump the apples into the dish, give them a shake to even them out, and pop them into the oven. I usually put 15 minutes on the timer and check them, give them a stir, and then turn the oven off and put them back in for five minutes. My oven, again, is broken so you probably won’t have to do this. I like them a little softer, so this is something you can either do for less or more.
5. BE CAREFUL. The melted sugar will be SUPER hot. Use something to get them into a bowl. Spoon, spatula, ladle, whatever makes it so you don’t hurt yourself. Leave the baking dish alone while you eat because it will be way too hot to handle/wash right now.
If you want, you can serve these with ice cream or a little cream or yogurt, or something else. I think ice cream is REALLY good with them, but they’re also wonderful on their own and don’t need anything else.
Go eat those apples!
6. When you’re done and you take your bowl out to the kitchen, put some soap and water in the baking dish or that stuff will stick like GLUE. I honestly tend to leave it overnight, but you know how you do dishes. Probably better to let it soak for a little while at least, though.