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Apple Pie Bites

I needed to make dessert for our monthly book club meeting and wanted something that had a taste of fall, could be easily transported, and tasted yummy.

So I decided to make my own version of Apple Pie Bites.

These scrumptious little tidbits use the same crust I make for Pecan Tassies with an apple pie filling and crumb topping.

They do take a little time to make, but nothing in the process is difficult.

And the effort is definitely worth it!

The cast of characters

The cast of characters

Start by making the crust, because it needs to chill. Combine cream cheese, butter and flour until if forms into a ball then chill for an hour (or overnight - or if you're in a huge hurry 30 minutes in the freezer).

Start by making the crust, because it needs to chill. Combine cream cheese, butter and flour until it forms into a ball then chill for an hour (or overnight. If you’re in a huge hurry 30 minutes in the freezer).

Make the crumb topping next by mixing softened butter, cinnamon, brown sugar, flour and oatmeal until crumbly. Set aside.

Make the crumb topping next by mixing softened butter, cinnamon, brown sugar, flour and oatmeal until crumbly. Set aside.

While the dough is chillin' in the fridge, peel, core and slice your apples into small pieces.

While the dough is chillin’ in the fridge, peel, core and slice your apples into small pieces.

Add cinnamon, flour and sugar to the apples and cook over medium heat in a heavy saucepan.

Add cinnamon, flour and sugar to the apples and cook over medium heat in a heavy saucepan.

It took about ten minutes for the apples to soften and the mixture to get that caramel look.

It took about ten minutes for the apples to soften and the mixture to get that caramel look.

While the apples are cooking, you can start filling your mini-cupcake cups with the chilled dough. Shape dough into calls about the size of walnuts.

While the apples are cooking, you can start filling your mini-muffin cups with the chilled dough. Shape dough into balls about the size of walnuts.

Use a tart tamper to press the dough into the cups.

Use a tart tamper to press the dough into the cups.

So they look like this when your done.

So they look like this when your done.

Using a teaspoon, spoon apple filling into cups.

Using a teaspoon, spoon apple filling into cups.

It takes just about a teaspoon to fill one.

It takes just about a teaspoon to fill one.

Then sprinkle on crumb topping. I pressed it down just a little into the cups so it stayed where I wanted it.

Then sprinkle on crumb topping. I pressed it down just a little into the cups so it stayed where I wanted it.

Bake in 350 oven for about 12 minutes, until filling bubbles and crumbly topping looks brown.

Bake in 350 oven for about 12 minutes, until filling bubbles and crumbly topping looks brown.

Drizzle with caramel sauce and devour!

Drizzle with caramel sauce and devour!

Apple Pie Bites

Crust

1/2 cup butter

1 8 oz. pkg. cream cheese

1 cup flour

Filling

3 large Granny Smith apples

1 tbsp. cinnamon

1/3 cup flour

2/3 cup sugar

Topping

1/3 cup butter

1 tsp. cinnamon

1/2 cup flour

3/4 cup quick oats

dash of salt

Caramel Sauce (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Crust: Soften butter and cream cheese. Combine until smooth then add in flour. Continue mixing until it forms a ball. Cover with plastic wrap and set in fridge for an hour or overnight (you can also stick it in the freezer for about 30 minutes if you are pressed for time but it works better in the fridge).

Topping: Soften butter then mix with cinnamon, dash of salt, flour and oats. Stir until crumbly. Set aside.

Filling: Peel, core and slice apples into small pieces. In a heavy saucepan, stir apples with cinnamon, sugar and flour and well coated. Cook over medium heat until apples soften and the filling looks a little like caramel. As it thickens, you’ll need to stir it more frequently. The reason for precooking the apples is because the crust cooks really fast and if you put the apples into the cups uncooked, they’ll still be crunchy when the crust is long past done.

To assemble, coat mini muffin-cups with non-stick cooking spray. Remove crust from fridge and form into balls about the size of a small walnut. Use a tart tamper (coated in flour) to push the crust into the bottom and up the sides of each cup. Fill each cup with about a teaspoon of the apple filling then top with the crumb topping, pressing it down gently.

Bake for about 12 minutes until the tops are brown and juice is bubbling. Remove and serve immediately or refrigerate until ready to use. You can also freeze these.

I served mine warm with a little caramel sauce over the top. You could also add a dollop of whipping cream or a scoop of ice cream (like dulce de leche).

She Who Loves Fall Desserts

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Fried apples have been a menu staple my entire life. I remember watching my grandma make them, as well as my mom.

They go great with pork or chicken dishes or anytime you want something delicious to add to the table. You can spoon them over vanilla ice cream, serve along side spice cake or just enjoy the spicy, caramel goodness all by itself.

These are also really easy to make.

Here ar the simple ingredients. Figure on half an apple per person.

 

Slice and core your apple, leaving the peel on. You can do this while your butter is melting in the skillet. I like to use a non-stick skillet for the apples.

 

Once the butter is melted, add apples, cinnamon and sugar. Cover and let simmer, stirring occasionally.

 

Cook until the apples are tender and the cinnamon, butter and sugar have created a beautiful caramel sauce on the apples.

 

Then enjoy! Just look at all that caremel-y deliciousness.

 

Fried Apples

1 apple

1 tbsp. butter

1 tsp. cinnamon

1/3 cup brown sugar

Wash apple then core and slice. I like medium-thick slices (about 1/3 inch). Melt butter in a non-stick skillet over medium heat. When melted, add apples, cinnamon and sugar. Stir until apples are coated. Cover and simmer until apples are tender (about 15 minutes) and the sauce is thick and makes you want to eat it with a spoon.

Inhale the fragrant scent and enjoy!

 

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Apple Pie

Drizzle on some caramel sauce and enjoy!

Our local summer baseball season has started which always make me think of things like hot dogs and apple pie. All-American all the way.

Here is a simple and easy recipe for apple. Make some this weekend and watch your family savor every bite!

Peel, core and slice your apples. Although I usually prefer Granny Smith's, I think I had Fuji the day I made the pie.

Put apple sliced in a microwave safe bowl and stir into sugar, flour and cinnamon. Nuke a minute at a time until apples are soft and begin to cook.

Get your pie crust ready to go.

Bake until golden brown and juice is bubbling.

Cool slightly before serving.

If you can wait that long...

Drizzle on some caramel sauce and enjoy!

Apple Pie

6 firm, tart apples (I like Granny Smith the best)

2/3 cup sugar

2 tbsp. flour

2 tsp. cinnamon

1 tbsp. butter, softened

Pie Crust

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Roll out your pie dough and line the bottom of a 9-inch pie pan. You can use pre-made dough or whip up a batch of your own. I love this pie crust recipe using Vodka.

Peel, core and thinly slice your apples. Put in a microwave safe bowl and stir in sugar, flour and cinnamon. Microwave a minute at a time, stirring after each setting, until the apples begin to cook. Spoon apples into the crust and drop in a few teaspoons of butter. Place the second crust on top, seal the edges and poke in a few air holes with a fork. Slather the rest of the butter over the top of the crust then bake  about 35-40 minutes until juices are bubbling and crust is golden brown. If you are worried about the edges of the pie getting too brown, cover them with a strip of foil and remove about 10 minutes before the pie is ready to take out of the oven.

To save myself from cleaning up a mess in the oven, I use a round pizza pan or a metal pan with a ring in the center made especially for pie baking to catch any juicy spills.

Serve warm with vanilla ice cream and a drizzle of caramel.

She Who Likes Pie Way Too Much

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Last week, I posted a list of fall party ideas. The very first one on the list is a party theme revolving around apples. I noticed workers out picking apples in the orchard across the road this past weekend and I thought about how fun it would be to host an apple themed party.

Let’s start with invitations. You could send a simple printed invitation on some apple-themed stationery. You could also hand-deliver a caramel apple with the invitation tied to the stick and festooned with a ribbon. I guarantee that will create some interest in your party. Think out of the box and see what fun invitations you can come up with.

Once you have set the time and date for your party and invited your guests, decide what decorations you will need and what your menu will be. Since this is an apple themed party, the menu will be fairly simple to choose – think about what goes great with apples!

Your menu might look something like this:

Roasted Pork Loin with baby potatoes and carrots

Chunky Applesauce

Sweet and Sour Cabbage or Coleslaw

(with a  julienne of cabbage and apples, of course)

Cinnamon Biscuits

Spicy or Mulled Apple Cider

Apple Crisp with fresh whipped cream or ice cream

Pork is such a natural main dish to pair with apples. They go together like peanut butter and jelly – sort of… oh, you get the idea.

Once your menu is in place, think about decorations. Keep it simple, but have fun with it. Pair sunflowers with apples for striking and eye-catching centerpieces. Hollow out apples to hold votive or taper candles. Pile apples into wooden baskets or clear glass bowls. If you plan to use scented candles, choose a cinnamon or apple based scent to keep the theme going throughout your home. It is easy to make a dried apple wreath if you peel, slice and dip in salt water. Let slices dry for about two weeks, turning every few days until completely dry. String them on jute or raffia or glue to a straw wreath form.

For entertainment, you could have a bob for apple contest or an apple peeling contest or even something as simple as an apple eating contest. You could also dip apples in caramel or chocolate and let your guests decorate them then pick a winner for the most artistic.

Have fun with the theme and see what great ideas you can come up with. I’d love to hear from you if you do host an apple-theme party! Let me know what worked for you!

Happy Entertaining!

Shanna

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