We’re stuck. We got the news this morning when Sato San went to pay the marina bill. Brewerton Boatyard had just gotten the fax. The Erie Canal was closed for repairs. Locks 12-14 were drained. For 3-weeks.
Marion, our French crew-member, had taken her 2-weeks of holiday to spend sailing up the Erie Canal with us. She’d only been with us 2-days and now we were stuck! Even worse, we had plans to meet friends at Annapolis Boat show on October 10. If the canal was closed for 3-weeks there wasn’t any chance we could make it to the boat show on time.
I called, hoping to find out it was all a big joke, a mistake, some kind of misprint anything! But no. Flooding had washed out reinforcements and a dam was on the verge of bursting at lock 13. It just wasn’t safe to keep it open.
The canal’s navigation manager tried to help us figure out an alternate route. Going North and up to Montreal might work… Umineko only had a 3’ ½ draft… But when he asked our beam he groaned. The narrowest lock on the Chamblee Canal was only 21’ wide. There wasn’t any way we would fit through. We were stuck until they opened the canal.
In the face of disaster we did the one thing we could: turned to sweets. I grabbed the sugar and started in on my twist on a traditional French dish.
Canal Closing Caramel Apple Crepes
- 1 recipe Cardinal Crepes
- 1 recipe Cumulus Carmel Sauce
- 1 recipe Cinnamon Sugar Apple filling
- Spoon cinnamon sugar apples onto crepe in line
- Spoon a bit of caramel sauce over
- Fold edges over until tube-shape
- Drizzle caramel sauce over top
Cumulus clouds indicate fair weather and caramel sauce always lifts the mood and thus cumulus caramel sauce earned its name
Caramel is basically burnt sugar, well singed a bit, but it always tastes delicious, and the more cream and butter you add the better. I almost always have sugar around but don’t often carry cream on board. No worries though because caramel sauce, caramel candy’s thinned-down cousin doesn’t need cream to taste delicious.
Cumulus Caramel sauce
- 1 c sugar
- 2 T butter
- ½ c water
- Spread sugar in thick-bottomed pan and melt over low heat stirring constantly until liquid and turning golden brown
- Remove from heat and add 1 T butter stirring furiously as sugar boils up and butter melts into the mixture. When mixed add second tablespoon of butter.
- Return to heat until mixture liquid
- Add thin stream of water stirring constantly until a thin consistency
- Remove from heat and enjoy
- You may want to add a few tablespoons more water if the sauce starts to thicken.
Cinnamon-sugar Apple Filling
- 2 granny smith apples peeled and diced
- 1 T lemon juice
- ½ c sugar
- 2 T cinnamon
- Place apples and lemon juice in saucepan over medium-low heat
- Mix in cinnamon and sugar
- Cook for 3 minutes, or slightly longer depending how well-done you like your apples