Baked Apples with Rosella Sauce

My mum loved baked apples, and living in Gippsland, Victoria , where the seasons were cooler than here in Queensland, we’d thoroughly enjoy the warm smell of cinnamon and sultanas wafting from the oven as mum baked the apples for dessert no matter what time of the year.

(It’s a bit hot here for the oven in summer so I do them outdoors in the cob oven if I cook them when the weather is muggy)

Mum made a mean stirred custard, and when combined with the apples and her vanilla icecream, it was heavenly.baked-apple

It’s such a traditional dish, but easy and economical.

For this recipe, I’ve messed around with the stuffing and have added a syrup, but it’s even better than mums I think.

The rosellas included in the sauce are a very Queensland ‘thing’.

They are the sepals and tepals which are the crisp red parts left after the rosella hibiscus has flowered. I snap them off the bush, remove the seed and use them fresh or freeze or preserve them for later. You’ll see a little video about harvesting them here.

Here’s my delicious recipe for you.

Make the rosella sauce first.


8 large rosellas (about 3/4 cup) with seed removed

1/4 cup sugar

1 cup water

Juice of 1 orange

2 teaspoons butter/coconut oil

Put all these ingredients into a small saucepan. Simmer 10 minutes until the rosellas are soft. Put aside until the apples are ready.

For the apples and filling

8 small to medium sized granny smith apples cored but not peeled


4 dates

4 dried figs

½ cup raw almonds

½ cup flaked or shredded coconut

2/3 cup flaxmeal

¼ cup citrus juice of your choice

2 teaspoons citrus zest of your choice

1 tablespoon honey or Maple syrup

½ cup firmly packed grated apple

plus 2 tablespoons of butter for the top before baking


Soak the dates, figs and almonds in some warm filtered water for out 10 minutes until they become soft. Drain and keep the water for your next smoothie. Use the fruits and almonds below…

Grind the drained soaked fruits and nuts with the remaining filling ingredients in a food processor until chunky and the mix holds together.

Place the apples into a baking dish with the hole facing vertically.

Stuff the cored apples with the mixture by pushing teaspoonfuls into the hole at a time until each hole is full.

Pour over the rosella sauce and sprinkle a little cinnamon over the top.

Dot the apples with the butter cut into small pieces.

Bake 20-30 minutes at 180C.

The apples will be soft when ready. Remember to spoon the rosella syrup that remains in the baking dish, over the apples to serve.

It’s great with yoghurt or ice cream.