Doing one apple at a time, remove the peel from the top 1/3 of the apple, remove the core and seeds and make a canal 1 inch thick wide that stop 1/4 inch from the bottom of the apple. Mix the lemon juice into the water. Drop the apple into the juice mixture. Proceed with the next apples removing each apple in the lemon juice mixture before adding the next one.
Place 1 tbsp of brown sugar into a mixing bowl. Use your fingers to mix in the raisins, pecans and 1 tbsp of the butter. Drain any of the lemon mixture that remains in the apples and stuff each apple with 1/4 of the mixture.
Pour the maple syrup in the crockpot. Stir in the remaining brown sugar and the remaining butter. Add the cinnamon stick. Place the apples into the mixture. The apples may be placed on top of each other at an angle if necessary.
Cover the crockpot and allow the apples to cook on 4 hours on low or until the apples are tender. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the cooked apples to a bowl. Empty the sauce into a saucepan and place the pan over medium-high heat. Bring the sauce to a boil and allow to cook, stirring occasionally, until reduced to about 1/2 C and becomes thick.
Pour the sauce over the apples before serving.
Makes 4 servings
Choose a type of apple that will hold up during cooking. Granny Smith apples work well as do Rome apples. These apples can also be served as a side dish with ham slices or your favorite pork recipe.