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Simple & Fruity Autumn Recipes

Chef Frederic Van Coppernolle visits The Early Show to offer crafty recipes for cooking with the fruits of the fall harvest: apples, kumquats, citrus fruits and grapes.

Get his very user friendly recipes for: Baked Apples with Grape Flan; Candied Orange Peel: Sautéed Pork Chop with Apple Chutney; and Pan-Fried Salmon.

Since his Food Network television show, "How To Boil Water," is all about making cooking a joy for those who sometimes confuse the kitchen for the closet, Van Coppernolle decided to take the same simple approach with the meal he prepares on Monday's The Early Show: Candied orange peels; Sautéed Pork Chop with Apple Chutney; and Pan-Fried Salmon.

The following are his recipes:

For 8 servings

8 apples (Golden Delicious, Granny Smith) cored and peeled
1/2 lemon juice
1 cup light brown sugar
1 cup water
1 drop vanilla extract
8 tbsp butter
1 cup black grapes sliced in half
1 cup white grapes sliced in half
1/2 qt milk
1 cup heavy cream
4 eggs
1/2 cup sugar

Rub the peeled and cored apples with the lemon juice and place in a deep ovenproof dish. Bring the light brown sugar, water and vanilla extract to a boil and drizzle over the apples. Place 1 tbsp of butter on each apple. Place in a 400-degree oven for 30 minutes, or until easily pierced with a knife but not overcooked (Lower the oven if it darkens too quickly). Remove from the oven when ready and let cool to room temperature. In the meantime, blanch the eggs with the sugar, slowly add the milk and the cream and mix in the white and black grapes. When the apples are cool, divide the grapes in the cavities of the apples and fill with the custard. Place the remaining custard around the apples and bake in a 325 degrees oven until the custard is set, 30 to 40 minutes. Remove and eat at room temperature.

Yield 1 /12 cups

6 thick-skinned Valencia or navel oranges
4 1/2 cups sugar, plus for rolling

Cut tops and bottoms off of the orange and score the orange into quarters, cutting down only into the peel and not into the fruit. Peel the skin and pith of the orange in large pieces, use the orange for another recipe. Cut the peel into strips about 1/4 inch wide. Put the orange peel in a large saucepan with cold water to cover, bring to a boil over high heat. Then pour off the water. Repeat 1 or 2 more times depending up how assertive you want the orange peels to be. (Test kitchen liked the texture of a 3-time blanch best, it also mellows the bitterness. But it is a matter of preference) Remove the orange peels from the pan.

Whisk the sugar with 1 1/2 cups water. Bring to a simmer and cook for 8 to 9 minutes

(If you took the sugar's temperature with a candy thermometer it would be at the soft-thread stage, 230 to 34 degree F.) Add the peels and simmer gently, reducing heat to retain a simmer. Cook until the peels get translucent, about 45 minutes. Resist the urge to stir the peels or you may introduce sugar crystals into the syrup. If necessary, swirl the pan to move the peels around. Drain the peels. (Save the syrup for ice tea). Roll the peels in sugar and dry on a rack, for 4 to 5 hours. Return to the sugar to store.

Cook's Note: One way to use orange peels is to stuff a dried date with a piece of orange peel and almond, then dip the entire thing into dark chocolate.

Preparation Time: 10 minutes plus 15 minutes draining and rolling

Cooking Time: 1 hour 13 minutes

Copyright 2003 Television Food Network, G.P. All rights reserved

Serves 4

Apple Chutney

1/4 cup red currant jam
3 tablespoons cider vinegar
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
2 teaspoons minced peeled fresh ginger
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon Madras curry powder
1 cinnamon stick
Pinch red pepper flakes
1/4 red onion, large dice
3 soft cooking apples, like a Macintosh, peeled, seeded, and diced
2 tablespoons dried cranberries
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves

Four 1-inch thick pork rib chops, 9 to 10 ounces each, patted dry
or, 8 thin bone-in pork chops, 4 ounces each
Oil as needed
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 tablespoon cold unsalted butter, diced (optional)

In microwave-safe bowl stir together the preserves, vinegar, butter, ginger, salt, curry powder, cinnamon stick, pepper flakes, and onion. Cover with plastic wrap and cook in the microwave oven on full power for 1 minute. Carefully remove the cover, add the apples and cranberries, and stir to lightly coat the fruit with the flavorings. Re-cover, and microwave at full power for 10 minutes. Poke holes in the plastic wrapping and set aside for 10 minutes. Stir in the cilantro.

Preheat the oven 350 degrees F. Heat a large oven-proof skillet over a high heat. Add the oil to the pan and heat until shimmering. Season the pork chops with salt and pepper. Lay the chops in the pan and sear until golden on one side, about 3 minutes. (If pan is too crowded sear the chops in batches, setting the first ones aside on a platter while searing the second batch.) Sear the fatty side of each chop by holding the chop sideways with tongs, about 1 minute per chop. Turn the chops over and immediately transfer the pan to the oven. Cook the chops until an instant-read thermometer registers 140 degrees, about 10 minutes. Or for thin pork chops, place a large oven-proof skillet over a high heat. Add the oil to the pan and heat until shimmering. Season one side of the pork chops with salt and pepper. Lay 4 chops in the pan and sear on one side until golden, about 3 minutes. Flatten with a spatula if the edges curl up. Turn the chops over and cook an additional minute.

Set chop aside on a warm plate and repeat with remaining chops. Transfer chops to a plate or platter and serve with chutney.

(If the chops have lots of juices, bring them to a boil and then swirl in the butter to make a quick pan sauce. Pour over the chops or mix in the chutney if desired.)

Serve two chops per person with the chutney.

Active Time: 15 minutes

Inactive Time: 10 minutes

Serves 4
Four 5-ounces center-cut salmon fillets (about 1-inch-thick), skin off
2 tablespoons olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Serving suggestions: Honey Mustard, Horseradish Mashed Potatoes, Mesclun greens

Bring the salmon to room temperature 10 minutes before cooking.

Warm a large nonstick sauté pan over medium-low heat. Season the fish with salt and pepper. Raise the heat under the pan to medium-high. Place the salmon, skin-side in the pan. Cook until golden brown on one side, about 4 minutes. Turn the fish over with a spatula, and cook until it feels firm to the touch, about 3 minutes more.

Transfer to a plate and serve as desired.

Copyright 2001 Television Food Network, G.P. All rights reserved

About The Chef:

Chef Frederic Van Coppernolle teaches the simple basics that form the foundation of more complex dishes. The folks at the Food Network ran with this idea and created "How to Boil Water," a new cooking show in which he shows viewers, along with his non-cooking female co-host, how to create delicious no-fuss meals.

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