By Cooking with Meeks October 12, 2022

CARVED PEELED APPLES GIVE AN EERIE EFFECT TO THIS TASTY CONCOCTION. A great way to get the kids involved in cooking for the eerie holiday!


  • 4   cinnamon sticks
  • 1   small orange
  • 7   small Granny Smith apples (about 2 lbs/1 kg)
  • 2   small lemons, divided
  •  whole cloves (optional)
  • 1   gallon (3.78 L) fresh apple cider
  • ½   cup (125 mL) pure maple syrup
  • 2   cups (500 mL) spiced rum or 1½ cups (375 mL) cinnamon whiskey (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 250°F (121°C). Line the Large Sheet Pan with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. Place the cinnamon sticks in the Herb Infuser. Using the Serrated Peeler, peel the rind of the orange. Place as much of the rind as possible into the infuser, then close the lid.
  3. Peel the apples and cut in half lengthwise. Using the Core ‘N More, scoop out the seeds and core. Then carve the rounded side of each apple half using the Core ‘N More and a paring knife to create faces. Juice the lemons into a small bowl. Dip apples in the juice and then transfer to paper towels to drain. Reserve remaining juice.
  4. Place apples face-side up on the prepared sheet pan. Press cloves into the “eye” sockets or as noses, if desired. Bake 1 hour, 30 minutes or until apples are dry and begin to brown around the edges.
  5. Meanwhile, place the Herb Infuser in the bottom of the Rockcrok® Dutch Oven XL. Add apple cider and maple syrup. Heat the cider, covered, on low heat while the apples are baking. (Do not let the mixture come to a boil; otherwise turn off heat).
  6. When ready to serve, remove the Herb Infuser and stir in the reserved juice and optional rum or whiskey. Add the shrunken “skulls” to the cider. For each serving, top with one shrunken “skull.”


  • 14 servings  servings

Nutrients per serving:

 U.S. Nutrients per serving (about 1 cup/250 mL): Calories 210, Total Fat 0 g, Saturated Fat 0 g, Cholesterol 0 mg, Sodium 15 mg, Carbohydrate 53 g, Fiber 2 g, Sugars 46 g, Protein 0 g

Cook's Tips:

 If desired, the orange can also be juiced and the extra juice added to the cider before serving.