I'm not sure what is up with me and the blogging world. I've sort of just been in a slump with cooking and life in general I guess. I haven't felt like doing anything but watching CNN or MSNBC. I am addicted to politics! It has consumed my life to the extent of not being able to cook or eat any decent quality meal for the last couple of months. All is well now though-I'm still addicted to politics-but the stressful part of it is over. Now I can enjoy life and what the future has to bring.
Blah, blah, blah...anyway...its Early Turkey Day here at work this week. Everyone gets together from our zone and brings in a dish and we cook and eat and talk and laugh and relax for the day. Its good times...(for being at work). I decided to make a squash casserole and a caramel apple pie. The casserole turned out great. I will definitely make it again.
The pie...well, the pie was: FRACKTASTIC!
I found the recipe on the foodnetwork website and it claims to be a blue ribbon winner. I believe it. It was wonderful. I did cheat and use a refrigerated pie crust. Blasphemy-I know...but it was still good. Really good.
I opted out of putting the top crust on the pie and instead just used a mini cookie cutter to cut out little apples and placed them on top of the struesel instead.
The filling is going to be my go to for anything apple I make from now on.
1 cup plus 1 tablespoon butter flavored shortening, chilled
1/3 cup ice water
1 tablespoon vinegar
1 egg, beaten
6 cups apples (Jonathan or Granny Smith)
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup all-purposeflour
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon vanilla
4 tablespoons heavy cream
4 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon butter
2 toffee bars or 3 ounces chocolate covered peanut or pecan brittle, crushed
Chill all ingredients, including the flour and vinegar. Combine the flour, salt and sugar. Cut in shortening with a pastry blender until the mixture resembles cornmeal. In another bowl, mix water and vinegar with the beaten egg. Add the liquid mixture, 1 tablespoon at a time, to the flour mixture, tossing with a fork to form a soft dough.
Filling: Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Peel and slice apples. Sprinkle with lemon juice. Combine dry ingredients in large bowl and add apples. Toss to mix. Add vanilla and cream. Melt butter in heavy skillet. Add apple mixture and cook approximately 8 minutes, to soften apples. Turn into pie shell.
Streusel Topping: Combine the flour and sugar. Mix in butter with fork until coarse crumbs. stir in the crushed toffee bars. Sprinkle over pie. Add top crust. Seal, flute edge and vent top. Brush with beaten egg white and sprinkle with sugar. Bake for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 350 degrees F and bake 45 minutes longer.