You’ve heard of the straw that broke the camel’s back, but what about the recipe that convinced me I needed to take a break from blogging? This is it. Baked Apple Chips. When I read the recipe on the Whole Foods Recipes app, it seemed simple enough: Slice apples super thin, dust with cinnamon and bake in a very low temperature oven.
The first time I made the crisps, they turned out beautifully. Slightly golden, edges curled delicately, dusted with cinnamon and crisp as a chip should be. I wondered how the commercial apple chip companies stayed in business when they were so easy to make at home. I deemed the apple chips blog worthy and set about to make another batch to photograph.
Only this time I must have subconsciously thought (1) the apple chips were foolproof and (2) burying my head in an interesting book was acceptable when I should have been checking the chips in the oven. No, friends, whatever the virtues of reading, it is not appropriate when apple chips are in the oven. I can even recall blatantly ignoring the timer beeping during those last crucial moments of the baking. (The book was The Elegance of the Hedgehog, if you must know.)
Though failed cooking projects happen as often as not, they are still disheartening. Thankfully the failure in this recipe can be attributed to so-called user error—my lack of vigilance. At its heart, this recipe truly can be simple and successful, provided proper attention is give to the chips. I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again: Resist the urge to do anything remotely interesting in the final baking minutes of these chips. Either that or blame it on the hedgehog.
Recipe adapted from the Whole Foods Market Recipes app.
2 medium apples (Pink Lady works well)
½ teaspoon cinnamon
Make the Baked Apple Chips
Preheat oven to 225°F (see note below if your oven doesn’t go this low). Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Slice the apples as thin as possible, at least 1/8 inch thin, but preferably thinner. A mandolin on the thinnest setting—1/16th of an inch—makes easy work of slicing the apples. Place the apple slices on the baking sheets in a single layer, arranging the largest slices on one sheet and the smaller slices on the other. Using a small sieve, dust apple slices with cinnamon. Bake apple slices for 1 hour, rotating racks after 30 minutes. The baking time ultimately depends on how thickness of the apple slices. Allow chips to cool, then store the apple chips in an airtight container, where they’ll last for several days. Make sure you cover them up as soon as they’re cool. I didn’t do this and the chips became limp. (Gah! Blame it on the hedgehog. )
Note: My oven only goes as low as 275°F. All it takes is a watchful eye to successfully bake the chips at this higher temperature. Check the chips after 30 minutes and remove from the oven if they are crisp. If they are almost crisp, you can turn the oven off but leave them in longer, checking every five minutes. The apple crisps go from perfect to overdone in a matter of minutes, so be vigilant.