Lady apples are a godsend for your party menu planning -- they're such cute, ready-made, edible containers. Stuff them with a festive, colorful salad and they say "Welcome! Have a delicious holiday!" all in one bite. In this recipe, the ladies are dressed in their autumnal finest: a bright and earthy wild rice salad, punctuated with crisp bursts of pomegranate. I see lady apples at the farmers' markets all the time, but lately I've seen them turn up seasonally at Whole Foods and other grocery stores. —vrunka
cooked wild rice
toasted pecans, chopped
pomegranate seeds (about half a pomegranate)
fresh parsley, finely chopped
walnut (or other nut) oil
fresh lemon juice (1 lemon), plus a few tablespoons more for the apples
Combine the wild rice, pecans, pomegranate, and parsley in a large mixing bowl.
In a smaller bowl, whisk together the oil, 1/4 cup of lemon juice, sugar, salt and pepper. Combine with wild rice mixture.
Prepare a large mixing bowl with about a quart of water and add the extra few tablespoons of lemon juice. Neatly chop the tops off of the lady apples and reserve them for topping the apples. Using a melon baller, gently core each apple, being careful not to break through the surface. Place the tops of the apples and the cored bottoms in the lemon water. Discard the cores.
After all the apples have been processed, drain the apples well. Stuff each apple with about a tablespoon of salad and top with the little apple "cap". This will hold very well at room temperature so serve at your leisure.