8/17/11

11 Caramel Apple Crumb Pie



Imagine.  It's fall and the scent of crisp apples are in the air.  Take a look at this pie.  Is it a pie?  A crisp?  A caramel apple?  Actually, its all three!

You don't have to wait until fall to enjoy this amazing pie.

Baking an apple pie begins with the right kind of apple.  I choose Granny Smith for their tartness, knowing that the toppings for this pie would be ultra sweet.

You can use any combination of Granny Smith, Fuji, Gala, or Golden Delicious apples.


The apples are peeled and cut ...  If you have one of those handy dandy apple peeler/slicer/corer machines, pull it out!


After using my apple corer/slicer, I continued to slice 'em thin ~ each apple was cut into about 32 slices each.


In a large mixing bowl, stir together the sugar, flour, cinnamon and salt.  The apple slices are added and mixed gently until well coated.

The mixture is PILED high on a pre-baked pie crust.  The crust is baked for 8-10 minutes instead of the full 20 minutes.  This prevents "mushiness" of the crust.

The apples will cook down a bit.  Smoosh it down gently.


Make the crumb topping with brown sugar, flour, rolled oats, and cold butter slices.  A pastry blender mixes this in really well.  Use a fork if you don't have a pastry blender.  Don't use an electric mixer or it will turn into a paste.

This is what you want ...  little chunks of butter are o.k.


Pile it on top of the apple slices and smoosh it down.

Refrain from nibbling.

Use a foil "shield" to prevent your crust from darkening.

Good thing I put the pie on a baking sheet!


Remove the foil and place on a cooling rack.


Remember that Quick N Easy Caramel Sauce?  It has thickened nicely in the fridge and drizzles effortlessly ...


Where's the ice cream?




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Caramel Apple Crumb Pie
A wonderful combination of a pie and apple crisp, topped with a delectable caramel sauce, this is sure to be a winner. Serve warm, with a scoop of vanilla ice cream for a memorable dessert.
Ingredients
  • single crust pie, refrigerated or made from scratch
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 Tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 6 cups thinly sliced peeled apples (about 4 large apples)
  • CRUMB TOPPING
  • 3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup old fashioned rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup cold butter
  • CARAMEL SAUCE
  • 1/2 cup butter (no substitutions)
  • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 2/3 cup heavy whipping cream (un-whipped)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 
  • Optional: 1/2 cup chopped pecans
Instructions
1. Make pastry for a single crust pie. Place in pie plate, trim and crimp the edge.2. Place a sheet of parchment paper on the pie crust shell and fill with dry beans or pie weights.3. Bake in a 400°F oven for 8-10 minutes.4. Filling: In a large bowl, stir the sugar, flour, cinnamon and salt.5. Add apple slices and gently toss until they are coated well. Pile mixture high into the baked pie crust.6. CRUMB TOPPING: Stir together brown sugar, flour, and oats. Using a pastry blender (or fork), cut the butter until topping resembles coarse crumbs.7. Sprinkle topping over apple mixture in pie and press down. 8. To prevent over-browning, cover edge of pie with a narrow strip of aluminum foil. Put pie on baking sheet. 9. Bake at 375°F for 25 minutes. 10. Remove foil and bake an additional 25-30 minutes more, or until top is golden brown. Remove from oven, cool on a wire rack, serve with caramel topping and chopped pecans, if desired.
CARAMEL SAUCE: In a small saucepan, melt butter over medium-low heat. Add the brown sugar, whisk until combined and thickened, about 2 minutes. Take off heat. Whisk in the whipping cream, until thoroughly blended, about 2 minutes. Stir in vanilla extract. Put in refrigerator until ready to use. It will thicken while in the fridge. Makes approximately 2 cups. 
Details
Prep time: 20Cook time: 55Total time: 1Yield: 6-8 servings
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