Appalachian Apples for All

Apples from AppalachiaI’m in the midst of moving to a new home in the Boston area, which means I’ve temporarily lost track of my favorite cookbooks and family recipes. Yet in the midst of filling boxes, I’ve found unexpected treasures like this pamphlet from Appalachian Apples, Inc. in Martinsburg, West Virginia. I’m not sure when the pamphlet was published – the style suggests early 1950s, which would match the years that my parents were first married and living in West Virginia. Who knows whether they made any of these recipes but it’s fun to discover that there’s still a Mountain State Apple Harvest Festival taking place this week in Martinsburg, complete with a pie contest and a coronation of Queen Pomona (whoever she is).

These “spiced” muffins rely on cinnamon for their flavor and apples for their texture. They turn out plump, sweet, and moist – good fuel for packing. The deadline for setting up our new kitchen is Thanksgiving (we’re hosting!) and I look forward to making lots of heritage recipes there.

Apple muffins 1

Spiced Apple Muffins (1950s)
Makes 12 muffins

2 cups pastry flour (sifted before measuring) [I used cake flour]
1/2 cup sugar
4 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup milk
1 egg, beaten
3 teaspoons [1 tablespoon] melted butter
1 cup finely chopped raw apples [I left the peels on]
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Line 12 muffin tins with paper liners or grease them with butter.
  2. In a large bowl, sift together the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine the milk beaten egg and butter.
  4. Add the milk mixture to the dry ingredients. Mix thoroughly and fold in the chopped apples.
  5. Drop the batter into the muffin tins.
  6. Mix together the topping ingredients and sprinkle a little bit on the top of each muffin.
  7. Bake for 20-25 minutes. Cool before serving.

About heritagerecipebox

I am named after my great-grandmother, who only prepared two dishes, according to anyone who remembers. Somehow I ended up with a cooking gene that I brought with me from Richmond, Virginia to my current home in Boston, Massachusetts. I have worked as a journalist and published three cookbooks plus a memoir and a novel. This blog gives me a chance to share family recipes and other American recipes with a past.
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5 Responses to Appalachian Apples for All

  1. greg says:

    The muffins look delicious! Best wishes in your new home…can hardly wait to see the new kitchen in your upcoming postings. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. E says:

    Hosting Thanksgiving on the heels of a move; brace woman. This recipe sounds like a Fall classic. I look forward to your Thanksgiving menu. Happy moving!


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