Biking for Apples

4 Tue, 2011 § 8 Comments

Last week I really wanted to get out on the bike before the storm hit.  There were errands to run, so I decided to pedal it.  First to take lunch to Dave [he forgets food too often], then to restock groceries.

Not too shabby of a grocery haul, eh?

I really love shopping for food & have a tendency to get so into it that, even with my bike shoes staring at me in the cart, I forget only two wheels are taking me home — & everything in the cart has to fit on my back.

A little finagling & everything settled safe & sound [no crushed bread!].  It did not even feel that heavy until I was nearly home.  We will call it added resistance for…training?

Since that commute, I have been debating whether wide sidewalks are better than bike lanes on the road.  Twice drivers making a right turn failed to notice me coming.  The first I anticipated & simply slowed to avoid a collision.  The second I was sure saw me as he “waited” at the stop sign, or so it seemed.  He began to pull forward as I was passing in front of his semi [that’s right].  Fortunately he spotted me & braked quickly.  THAT will wake you & shake you.

I would love to be able to just get on my bike & go but have accepted I must remain extra aware.  Since I am used to biking right along side cars, I would say I am more aggressive than many, but I still error on the safer side & often assume people do not see me [which it seems is frighteningly too often the case].  I am certainly finding the balance of cycling aggressively but also knowing when not to chance it.

Regardless of how I am riding that day, it is always amazing to feel the wind rushing by.  Even if I hadn’t enjoyed my ride — which I always do — the risky, near collisions were worth it once dinner rolled around.  Without that trip to the store, we would have been lacking one simple ingredient:

Any tart apple will do, but the Ladies are our favorite for this dish.

Apples & sausage are a perfect match, even if your sausages are “sausages” & not actual meat.  Whichever way you swing, you will love this dish, especially if you snag nice apple-smoked, sage links [Field & Roast makes a tasty one].

Links & Apples

[inspired by Simply in Season, one of my favorite cookbooks]

Serves 2

  • 2 – 3 sausage links [pierced in several places if real sausage]

Brown sausages on all sides in a lightly oiled skillet over med-high heat, turning often, ~5 – 7 minutes.

While sausage cooks, combine the following in a small bowl.

  • 2 T mirin or white wine
  • 2 T jalapeno or other hot pepper jelly [I am so lucky my mom bottles so many great foods; you can also use apple jelly]
  • 1 T grainy mustard

Set mixture aside.

Once sausages are browned, remove from pan & keep warm.

  • ½ small onion, sliced in half moons

In the same skillet used for sausage, saute onion on medium heat, stirring often until starts to brown.  Add more oil if needed.

  • 1 medium or 2 small apples

Add to skillet & stir until starts to brown.

Stir in jelly mixture.

  • ½ T fresh thyme
  • pinch of pepper

Sprinkle over onions & apples.

*Return Field & Roast or other vegan “sausages” to pan, & heat through.

*If using actual sausages, return to pan, reduce heat to med-low, cover & cook until sausage are completely cooked through, ~10 minutes.

The combination of flavors is delicious.  Caramelized onion & apple…pungent thyme…a bit of a kick from the hot jelly…& the sausages round it all out.  We added a small winter green salad with mochi croutons & enjoyed a very satisfying meal.

~

Do you ever bike commute?  Sidewalks or road bike lanes?

What is your current favorite, hearty winter dish?  [“Sausage” & apples with thyme may have taken the lead for us.]

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§ 8 Responses to Biking for Apples

  • My favorite winter dishes are anything involving butternut squash! As far as hearty, I’ve been into veg chili or other bean soups, especially when they are thick and super spicy.

  • Wow. You are B.A. biking with cars…I’m absolutely terrified to ride in traffic and will only take my bike out on trails. Love the meal idea, sounds like a lovely meal for the winter months, which really seam to drag, now that Christmas is passed. I LOVE the picture of the apples on the rail. Totally my “style”!

    • Allie says:

      I want to get more into mountain biking — is that what you ride on the trails? Or are there road bike trails where you live? I wanted to start commuting on my bike to save $$ & reduce my cfp, so I just had to get used to the cars. Drivers here are MUCH BETTER than in SLC. A lot of people run red lights in SLC, that is much harder to anticipate.
      Thank you; that photo was taken at our old place in Utah, but I really like how it turned out, so I wanted to use it again.

  • Ashley says:

    My dad makes a killer baked sweet potato and apple casserole dish…unreal. i think it’s in the cookbook 🙂 I will have to forward this on to Brad–i think we would both really love this dish next time we cook.

    BE CAREFUL OUT THERE!! I would err on the side that a car does not see you…not worth a single accident. you vs. car means you lose. I only ride on bike paths because I’m so paranoid about falling into a car or getting hit–although drivers out in DC are some of the worst in the nation, so my chances of dying while commute are much higher 😀 I would imagine sidewalks are bumpy… Do you have good reflective lights on your bike?

    • Allie says:

      I do have good reflectives & just straight up lights in the front. Sidewalks can be bumpy; they are pretty good here because the wide sidewalks are meant for bikes. I still prefer less bumpy streets [with bike lanes], plus the snow/ice isn’t always cleared off of shady sidewalk areas. eek. Bike commuting in DC? I’ll pass. [please don’t die.]
      Sweet potato & apple casserole sounds delish! I’ll have to track that down in his book. I hope Brad likes the sausage & apples.

  • Natalie says:

    When we lived in Boulder Colin and I would both bike to work regularly. Since we lived in such a bike friendly area, I always used the bike lanes. One of my first commutes, though, I was in the left turn lane in a busy street and I had just gotten clips. I couldn’t unclip in time and fell right over onto a car! I was not seriously hurt, but my ego was bruised 🙂

    • Allie says:

      OUCH. Dave did that in the beginning too — not into a car, but right in front of one flat onto the road — the driver actually got out to ask if he was ok. Like you….just his ego…

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