Guess what everyone…I’ve done it. I’ve finally made apple pies!
If this is one of the first times you are reading one of my posts here at eat sweet. by carla sue, a little while ago I wrote about how I have not yet baked some of the seemingly traditional desserts such as the apple pie. Actually, it was not that long ago that I made gingerbread for the first time! I have been wanting to make apple pies for a little while now, but after some of you telling me that you were looking forward to seeing me make them it gave that little kick up the bottom and got me going. So thank you!
But as per usual, just to mix things up a little bit, I wasn’t completely happy with making a normal apple pie. Don’t get me wrong, normal is good! But, I just had to do it a little bit differently. So…these babies are CARAMEL apple pies, and they are individual in size too! I’m not quite sure what it is about desserts that are that bit smaller than their normal size, but I love them. Oh, actually I know exactly what it is. It just makes them that much cuter!
While making these pies, I couldn’t help but have songs from Disney’s Snow White and the Seven Dwarves floating around in my head. Okay, they were out of my head too. I was singing them. Much to the annoyance of my brother. But ‘why Snow White?’, some of you may ask. Don’t worry, I had to explain it to my Mum too.
There is a scene in the movie in which Snow Whites sings and makes an apple pie for the dwarves, with the help of her new forest friends. And when I was little, this was one of my favourite parts. I was fascinated by it. I guess I should have known back then that I would grow up to have a love for baking. And boy, while making these apple pies, I wished that I had some help from squirrels and birds too! Mind you, the next bit of the movie is when the evil queen turns up. That part is not so good.
Now, back to the beautiful caramel apple pies. Although I wanted to create my own recipe for the filling of the pies, I thought it would be best to stick to a trusted recipe for the pastry. I did a little bit of looking around, but finally and happily decided on Sally Wise’s pastry recipe. And I am oh so glad that I did! The pastry is so golden, sweet and crumbly…making the pies quite reminiscent of apple crumble too, which is always a winner in my book.
Caramel Apple Pies
Recipe for the pastry adapted from ‘Apple Pie’ – Sweet! 260 little slices of Heaven by Sally Wise
For the filling
7 Granny Smith apples
1/3 C sugar
1/3 C water
1/2 tsp cinnamon
250g jersey caramels, chopped
For the pastry
125g unsalted butter, softened
30g custard powder
170g plain flour
50g self raising flour
1 egg white, lightly beaten
1. Peel, core and slice the apples into small cubes, and place in a microwave safe container with the sugar and water.
2. Place a lid on the container and cook in the microwave on HIGH for 2 minutes.
3. Stir the mixture and then return to the microwave for a further 3 minutes on HIGH. Stir, and then cook for 2 minutes on HIGH (checking every 20 or so seconds, as the apples should be soft, but still holding their shape).
4. Drain any excess water.
5. Add the 1/2 tsp of cinnamon, and then any extra sugar or cinnamon to taste.
6. Once cool, fold in the chopped jersey caramels.
7. In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, and then whisk in the egg.
8. Sift the custard powder, plain flour and self raising flour into the bowl, and fold through the butter and egg mixture.
9. Mix well, wrap in plastic wrap and let sit in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
10. Preheat the oven to 210 degrees Celsius.
11. Grease a 6-piece large muffin pan (the muffin sizes for the pan I used were a width of 9cm and a height of 4cm).
12. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the pastry and cut into rounds, using the pastry to cover the base and side of each muffin compartment.
13. Brush each case with a little egg white.
14. Spoon the caramel apple mixture into the pastry case.
15. Dampen the edge of the pastry with a little bit of water or egg white, and use the left over pastry to create strips to criss cross over the top of each pie.
16. Glaze the top of the pies with egg white and finish off with a sprinkling of sugar.
17. Bake the pies for 10 minutes, then reduce the temperature to 180 degree Celsius and cook for a further 15-20 minutes, or until the pastry is golden and crisp.
18. Serve warm with vanilla ice-cream and dollop cream.
Recipes yields 6 individual pies.
A beautiful apple pie, oozing with caramel and sweet apple, kept warm in a bed of crisp and crumbly pastry.