This great lunch or snack idea is popular at this time due to back to school thoughts! The recipe originates from Whole Foods Market in 2009. I discovered a few tips and tricks while making this for our track meet picnic today! I use Pink Lady (Cripps Pink) apples. They have a sweet tart flavor, are very crisp, and are very resistant to browning!
Use an apple corer to remove the core and make the kid friendly finger hole! You may need to use the corer again to remove small parts of the core that get left behind.
Cut a thin slice off the top and bottom of the apple.
Cut the apple in half to create 2 thick rings.
Cut each one of those rings in half again .
Fill a bowl with cold water. Add a splash of lemon juice. The water should be a little cloudy and smell lightly like ... hmm imagine... lemons! Toss your apple slices into the water. You can let them soak while you do other things or take them right back out. Pat them dry with paper towels. The lemon water bath will make the apples resist for almost 24 hours!
Match up the apple slices. This serves 2 purposes. One... unless you have chef quality knife skills, the pieces will be uneven or a bit jagged which will make an ugly sandwich. Two... if the halves don't match, your filling will seep over the edges. I use the color markings on the apple to match the slices up.
Ready for the trickiest part of this operation??? The apple "juice" that leaks from the cut slices makes it nearly impossible to spread your peanut/almond/sun-nut butter. I suggest using your knife to get about a third of the amount you think you will need. Place it on the apple slice, move the knife away sideways in effectively dragging rather than spreading, then tilt the knife 90 degrees and scrape the peanut butter off the knife using the edge of the apple skin. Repeat 2 more times which will cover the apple slice. Your peanut butter will not be evenly spread. The peanut butter near the core hole will be much thicker than near the skin... never fear it will fix itself when you place the top slice on in a few steps!
Sprinkle mini chocolate chips and granola on top of the peanut butter.
The original photo shows regular chips but they make the sandwich too fat to bite into.
Top with the other apple slice. These traveled very well in a plastic container, I am not so sure I would pack these in a plastic bag as hands that reached in to get the sandwich would get very sticky! Our fingers needed a little lick but not a full washing!