Apple Cake with a Sweet Riesling Glaze

4 Medium-to-large* Honeycrisp apples
Juice of 1 lemon
¾ cup unsalted butter at room temperature
¾ cup granulated sugar
2 tsp vanilla paste
Zest of a lemon
3 tsp fresh lemon juice
3 large eggs
1¼ cups AP flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp cardamom
¼ tsp salt

Sweet Riesling Glaze:
¼ cup Schmitt Sohne Vineyards Sweet Riesling
1-1½ cup confectioners sugar
Pinch of salt
Pinch of cardamom

Riesling Whipped Cream:
1 cup heavy cream
2 tbsp Schmitt Sohne Vineyards Sweet Riesling
1 tbsp confectioners sugar

Preheat oven to 350°F and prepare a 9-or 10-inch springform with non-stick cooking spray.

You can make this cake with any size apples*, if you have smaller apples, peel and cut them in half and core them. If they are larger, peel, cut the sides as close to the core as possible, you will have 2 large sides and 2 smaller pieces that you can use if necessary if you don’t have room for the larger ½ apple piece. Thinly score each apple piece lengthwise without cutting all the way through. Toss with lemon juice and set aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter until creamy, about 1 minute. Add sugar and mix until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add eggs one at a time and beat after each addition. If the batter looks curdled, don’t worry, it’s because the eggs are colder than the butter and sugar. It will smooth out when you add the flour. Add vanilla paste, lemon zest and lemon juice. Beat until combined.

Mix flour, baking powder, cardamom and salt together. With the mixer running on low speed add the flour a little at a time and beat until just combined—taking care not to overmix. Make sure you use a spatula to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl to make sure everything is incorporated and smooth.

Spoon batter into prepared springform pan and smooth the top with a spatula. Place the apples equal-distance from each other in a pattern, with the sliced side up on top. You can place them in a circle around the perimeter of the pan and put your largest half in the center.

Make the glaze while the cake bakes by mixing the wine, 1 cup of powdered sugar and spices until smooth, and set aside. If it is too loose, add more sugar until you like the consistency.

Bake in the middle of the oven for about 60-70 minutes, until lightly browned and a toothpick comes out clean.

Transfer cake to a cooling rack and immediately glaze the cake by spooning the glaze over the hot cake until you don’t have any glaze left. If you don’t like the cake to be too sweet, only use half the glaze. Make sure to fully glaze the apples. Let sit for 10 minutes to let the glaze set and remove the springform ring—the bottom will remain and will support the cake as you serve it. Let cake cool to room temperature.

While the cake cools, make the whipped cream. Combine cream, wine, sugar and vanilla paste in a chilled metal bowl. Beat on medium high until soft peaks form. Serve immediately or refrigerate for up to 2 hours, beating softly just before serving.

Serve cake with the Riesling-Sweetened Whipped Cream.

Recipe created by Elizabeth Karmel for Schmitt Sohne Vineyards Riesling

Brats with German Riesling and Sauerkraut

6 bratwursts cooked or uncooked
½ stick, 4 ounces, unsalted butter
1 large white or yellow onion
1 teaspoon caraway seeds
1 bottle Schmitt Sohne Vineyards Riesling
1 28.5 ounce jar Sauerkraut, Traditional
6 hoagie, pretzel or potato roll, optional German Mustard and favorite condiments

Grilling Method: Indirect/Medium

Preheat the grill.

Melt the butter in the Dutch oven or heavy-duty saucepan. Cut the onion in half and cut into half-moon slices or a rough dice. Place in the bottom of the Dutch oven and let cook for about 5 minutes or until translucent. Add the caraway and the wine and bring to a simmer. Turn off the heat and set aside.

Meanwhile, remove brats from packaging and set in the center of the cooking grate over indirect heat. If they uncooked, turn occasionally and let cook for about 20 minutes or until well marked and almost cooked through. If they are fully-cooked, do the same thing but you will only grill them for about 5 minutes. I like to cook them until they are a deep brown color.

Remove from grill and place into the wine and onion mixture. Bring the liquid back to a gentle boil. Add the sauerkraut and reduce the heat to very low and simmer with the lid on for about 30 minutes. The brats are now ready to serve directly from the pot. If you are going to serve them later, turn off the heat but leave them in the liquid. Either refrigerate or simmer them again just before serving.

Obatzter a.k.a. Bavarian Cheese Dip

8 oz California Camembert
4 oz block cold Cream Cheese
3 oz cold Laughing Cow original cheese—4 wedges
¼ tsp ground white pepper
1½ tsp Paprika powder
1 tbsp freeze-dried chives
¼ cup Schmitt Sohne Vineyards Dry Riesling
Cut chives for garnish
Soft baked pretzels and pretzel rods for dipping
Carrots, Celery and scallions cut into crudité for dipping

Using a paring knife, remove the rind from the side of the Camembert wheel and cut wheel into four pieces. Add to a food processor fitted with an s blade. Add the cream cheese and the Laughing Cow cheese. If your food processor has a dip option, use this to combine the cheeses.

Add the white pepper, paprika, freeze-dried chives and process again to mix. Using a spatula, scrape down sides and add the wine and process on puree for about 30 seconds to mix well. The texture should be smooth and thick, but pourable. Process a little longer if needed. Pour in a 2-cup container with a lid and refrigerate overnight.

When ready to serve, take out about 1 hour before serving and place in a serving bowl. Sprinkle with chives and serve with backed pretzels, pretzel rods, and the cut carrots, celery and scallions.

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