This recipe can be made a day ahead and refrigerated; reheat before serving.
Source: Martha Stewart Living, December 2006
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
1 large shallot, thinly sliced into rings
6 apples (about 2 pounds), such as Gala or Winesap, quartered and seeded
1/4 teaspoon saffron threads, crumbled
1 1/2 cups homemade or low-sodium store-bought chicken stock
1 1/2 cups apple cider
1/4 cup dry sherry
3 tablespoons dried currants
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add shallot, and cook, stirring often, until soft, about 4 minutes. Add apples, and turn to coat. Stir in saffron, stock, cider, sherry, and currants, and season with salt. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, and cover. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until apples are tender, 12 to 15 minutes.
Using a slotted spoon, transfer apples to a bowl. Raise heat to medium-high, and cook sauce until reduced by half, about 10 minutes more. Season with pepper. Pour sauce over apples. Serve warm or at room temperature.