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‘Apple Pie on a Stick’ is fun to make — and tasty treat

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Stick cooking is probably the oldest form of cooking — at least it's the method depicted in most of the books and movies you read and see about prehistoric times. With just a few contemporary updates, stick cooking is still one of the most universal and popular ways of cooking today.

Stick cooking works on the same dry-heat principles as broiler or rotisserie cooking does at home, so many foods suited to these two methods could be adapted to stick cooking. Hot coals rather than direct flames are best for stick cooking. The larger the fire, the longer you'll have hot coals available for cooking. Basically, food is placed on a stick, held near coals, and rotated until cooked. Just follow these simple steps.

Place the food(s) to be cooked on a stick or wire hanger. (Hangers are good to use with shish kebabs because the food will slide easily onto the hangers. However, cut the food in small pieces so the hangers aren't too heavy. Meats should be cut into thin strips and double threaded onto the wire.)

Place food over but not too near coals, or food will be cooked on the outside and raw in the middle. If the food will take a long time to cook, find a rock to place under the stick near the handle and another to hold the stick down.

Turn the stick periodically until the food is done. If one item will take more time to cook than the others, it can be partially precooked.

This delicious dessert will complement any outdoor meal:

Apple Pie on a Stick

You will need an apple (Jonathan or Rome work best) and roasting stick or dowel for each person, and a bowl with 1 cup of sugar and 1 tablespoon of cinnamon mixed in it. To begin, push the stick through the apple top until the apple is secure on the stick. Place the apple 2 or 3 inches above the hot coals and turn the apple while roasting it. As the apple cooks, the skin browns and the juice drips out. When the skin is loose, remove the apple from the fire (but leave it on the stick). Peel the hot skin off very carefully.

Roll the apple in the sugar-cinnamon mixture, then return it to roast over the coals, letting the mixture heat to form a glaze around the apple. Remove from coals and let it cool.

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