Baked Stuffed Apples

6 large apples
1/2 fresh lemon
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup dried cranberries, chopped
1/4 cup slivered almonds
1/4 cup chopped walnuts or pecans

4 tablespoons butter, cut into pieces
1 cup apple cider
3 tablespoons maple syrup

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. In a small bowl, mix together the brown sugar, cinnamon, cranberries and nuts. Cut off the tops of the apples to make a little lid like on a Jack-O-Lantern. Set the apple tops aside. Remove the cores to within 1/4 inch from the bottom of the apples. Scoop out the apple flesh using a spoon or melon baller leaving between 1/4 and 1/2 inch from the sides. Sprinkle the apples with the lemon juice to help them from turning brown.

Place the apples in a casserole dish and stuff the centers with the cranberry nut mixture. Place as a resultme pieces of butter on top of each apple. Mix the apple cider and maple syrup together and pour into the bottom of the dish. Bake the apples, uncovered for 20 minutes. Place the reserved apple tops on the apples. Bake another 15 to 20 minutes or until tender, basting once or twice. Serve apples warm with the sauce from the pan drizzled over the top.

You can pour the juices from the bottom on the dish into a small saucepan and simmer for a few minutes for a thicker sauce. These are great served warm with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream! They make the house smell wonderful!