I'm not a baker. I do bake a lot during the holidays, but during the year I pretty much stick to chocolate chip cookies and a few cakes here and there...box cakes!
Speaking of baking, and off subject, I ONLY use real butter now. I know it is a bit more expensive than margarine, but sooo worth it...one of those little "luxuries" I afford myself! Especially after my daughter told me margarine is only one molecule away from plastic...ewwww!
I went through a phase when I was big-time into fondant cakes. Fun little hobby but it was a little tough on my hands so I had to give it up!
So during the holidays I stick with pies...and cookies...and cheesecake (I have a to-die-for pecan pie cheesecake I will share someday!) In my quest to find the "perfect" pie during the holidays, I stumbled across this Caramel-Pecan Apple Pie. AMAZING! Since I cut out the recipe and put it in my little "recipe book," I have no idea where I got it...I wish I could give proper credit!
Brian's "birthday cake" and Valentine's dessert has always been pumpkin pie...he loves it! But THIS year he requested THE Apple pie.
This is not a simple recipe...a little more complex than your typical pumpkin pie or boxed cake. But if you ever want to really impress your family, this is the dessert that will do it!
I have tweeked it a bit...so here is my version!
CARAMEL-PECAN APPLE PIE
5-6 cups peeled and sliced tart apples (I use Granny Smith...about 5)
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon lemon juice
3/4 cup chopped pecans
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
3 tablespoons sugar
4 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1/4 cup caramel ice cream topping, room temperature
1 unbaked deep dish pastry shell (I buy the frozen kind!)
3 tablespoons melted butter
* In a bowl, toss apples with lemon juice and vanilla. Combine the pecans, sugars, cinnamon and cornstarch; add to the apples and toss to coat. Spread caramel topping over the bottom of the pie shell; top with apple mixture (shell will be really full!) Drizzle with the butter!
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
2/3 cup chopped pecans
6 tablespoons cold butter (I zap mine for about 13 seconds just long enough to soften it a bit!)
1/4 cup (or more) caramel ice cream topping, room temperature
* In a small bowl, combine the flour, pecans and sugar. Cut in the butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Sprinkle over filling. (I kind of "pack" it on top of the apples with my hands)
BAKE AT 350 DEGREES FOR 60 MINUTES or until filling is bubbly and topping is browned. Immediately drizzle with the caramel topping when you take it out of the oven.
Sit back and watch your family devour it! If you want you can top it with vanilla ice cream.
OH. MY. GOODNESS!!!