British culinary master Michel Roux Jr.'s warm and delicious baked apples are perfect for a Christmas-dessert. Serve hot, with chilled crème fraîche or muscavado sugar ice cream.
Wine suggestion: Saussignac, Chateau Tourmentine 1994, J M Hure
Mix the suet and muscovado sugar with the grated apples, dried fruits, nuts, spices, rum and brandy. The flavouring is very much a matter of taste; you may like more cinnamon, for example. This mixture can be kept in the refrigerator in an airtight container for many weeks, and if anything it improves with storage.
Heat the oven to 200°C / 400°F / gas 6. Peel the Cox’s apples and remove the cores. Fill each apple with the stuffing, packing it tightly; there will be plenty, so pile the stuffing up to cover the top of the apple. Put the apples in a roasting pan and put a knob a butter on each apple. Liberally sprinkle with icing sugar and place in the oven for 20 minutes, basting often with the cooking juices.
Serve the apples on warm plates. Place the roasting pan over high heat and pour in a good glass of brandy, whisking to loosen all the caramelized juices in the tray. Pass through a sieve into a jug and poor over the apples.
Serve hot, with chilled crème fraîche or muscavado sugar ice cream.
Bring the milk and cream to boil, then remove from the heat. Beat the yolks and sugar until thick and creamy. Poor the boiling milk into the yolks mixture, whisking continuously. Return the mixture into the saucepan and stir with a wooden spatula over low heat until the custard thickens slightly. Chill, then churn in an ice-cream machine until frozen.