This is a guest post by Darby Lanpher, Harper CE Instructor Services Specialist
Apple picking is always a favorite event to do in the crisp fall weather! Spend time with family and enjoy the outdoors. You may also pick up your pumpkins for Halloween or Thanksgiving to make pumpkin pie.
Apple Orchard Day Trips: Whether you are looking for an afternoon getaway or a weekend trip, below are the best Midwest apple orchards by their proximity to Chicago. Click on the link to learn more about each location.
- Goebberts Apple Orchard, Pingree Grove, IL https://goebbertspumpkinpatch.com/
- County Line Orchard, Hobart, IN http://www.countylineorchard.com/
- Apple Holler, Sturtvevant, WI https://www.appleholler.com/
- Honey Hill Orchard, Waterman, IL https://honeyhillorchard.com/
- All Seasons Orchard, Woodstock, IL https://allseasonsorchard.com/
- Stades Farm and Market, McHenry, IL https://stadesfarmandmarket.com/
Everyone loves cookies! When we returned home from our afternoon picking apples, our routine was to wash the apples, cut a few into slices and top with peanut butter. It was nutritious and easy. We then decided to find an easy recipe to make cookies. We used the recipe below for Fall school events and as a Thanksgiving treat. You can also drizzle chocolate on top for that sweet tooth!
Apple Peanut Butter Cookies
- 1 c. creamy peanut butter
- 1 c. unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 c. sugar
- 1 c. packed brown sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
- 3 c. all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 2 tsp. cinnamon
- 1 tsp. kosher salt
- ½ c. peeled and grated apple (I use the large holes on a box grater, and then lightly chop any long strands of apple with a knife) – (use Granny Smith or Pink Lady)
- ½ c. peeled and diced (1/4” size) apple – (use Granny Smith or Pink Lady)
- Preheat oven to 375° F.
- In a large bowl, cream the butter, sugar, and brown sugar on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes, scraping the bowl 2 to 3 times. Add peanut butter and incorporate. Beat in eggs and vanilla.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Add dry ingredients to the peanut butter mixture and mix until fully incorporated. Fold in the grated and diced apple.
- Drop about 2 tablespoons of dough onto baking sheet, about 2’’ apart. Use a medium scoop (1-5/8” in diameter), loaded just a bit generously. Bake for 12 to 14 minutes, or until golden brown. Let cool on baking sheet for 2 minutes before removing to wire racks to cool completely.
Enjoy and Happy Fall!