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Autumn is a busy time here at Audley End and
the apple harvest has just begun. The head gardener Mr Verte assures me that
this Peasgood Nonsuch has lovely flavour and is perfect for baking. And I know just the
recipe. Lord and Lady Braybrooke love this, it’s Suedoise
or Apple Hedgehog as we call it in the kitchen. This evening Lord and Lady Braybrooke have
guests over. Now all their dishes must look spectacular so I have decided to make Apple
Hedgehog. For this you will need: Five or six goodly shaped apples. Some light sugar syrup. Enough marmalade, apple or apricot. For the icing, two egg whites. Two teaspoons of sugar. For the decoration, almonds. Currants. And cherries. Firstly, you need to peel and core your apples
and then stew them in a light sugar syrup. Oh they smell nice and sweet! You have to be careful not to overcook them,
this variety stew very quickly. And now for the icing. Mix two egg whites with two teaspoons of sugar,
and whisk until you can form peaks on the top. Now you’re ready to form your dish. Now that your apples are stewed, you can take
them out of the syrup and form the body of the hedgehog. You might need to cut one or two of them in
half to form the head. Eliza Acton’s version of this is very grand
and spectacular, but Lord and Lady Braybrooke have a sense of humour, so I am making my
hedgehog look like he’s out snuffling with a cherry for it’s nose and a raisin for it’s
eyes. Marmalading is a good way of preserving fruit
and here is some of our apple marmalade we have already made. You want to use this marmalade
to hold all the bits of apple together and to fill in the middle. And then layer the icing over your hedgehog. And now for the decoration. For the spikes of the hedgehog, you need to
use sliced almonds. Make sure you choose good slices. And poke them in all over the body. With the decorating done, place the dish in
a moderate oven until the tops of the almonds are nicely brown. And there you have it, apple hedgehog. A jolly
autumnal dish.

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