In about 15 minutes you can have a pan of plump, golden wedges of fruit that resemble fried potatoes, only they melt in your mouth-and they are apples! 4 large apples 2 tablespoons unsalted butter 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar ¼ cup applejack, Calvados, whiskey or sherry One 1 inch piece cinnamon stick or a 2 inch piece vanilla bean halved lengthwise Peel and remove the core of the apples and then cut the apples into quarters or sixths. Choose a 10 inch pan with a tight fitting lid that will hold the apples in a single layer. Melt the butter over medium heat, then add the apples and sprinkle on the sugar, using the larger amount if they are tart apples. Raise the heat, shuffle the pan back and forth to mix the apples evenly with the butter and sugar, and then add the applejack and cinnamon. Reduce the heat to low, cover the pan, and cook 15 minutes. Check to see if the apples are tender by piercing them with a knife. If not, cook for a few minutes longer, or until tender. Remove the lid, raise the heat a little, and continue cooking, reducing the liquid as you do so, until the apples are golden, after several minutes. Serve warm.
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