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Apple Cinnamon Crostata

24 Sep

Galette or crostada – that is the question. I’ve seen both words used and often wondered if there’s a real difference between the two foods. It’s basically a potato/potato situation. Both are a flat, rounded, open-faced tart filled with a variety of sweet or savory ingredients. It just depend on whether you prefer the French or Italian term. I’ll go with Italian. 🙂

I’m always looking for new ways to incorporate apple and cinnamon into desserts and this is a delicious and easy option. I added some chopped walnuts on top for some extra texture and flavor. This crust isn’t super flaky like the typical crostata, but is the crust recipe I use for all sorts of pies and treats. (only 3 ingredients!) But next time, I think I’ll try making some homemade puff pastry!

I’m looking forward to playing with different flavors in the future and creating some amazing crostatas. Or galettes. Eh, tomato/tomato.

Apple Crostata

For the crust:
1/2 cream cheese, softened (4 oz)
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup butter, softened

For the filling:
1/3 cup brown sugar
3 tsp corn starch
1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
Pinch of ground ginger
3 large granny smith apples, cored, peeled, and thinly sliced
Chopped nuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. To make the crust, combine all three ingredients in a mixer and combine until totally incorporated and a ball of dough is formed. Roll the dough on a floured surface and shape into an oval.

Combine the brown sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon, and ginger in a medium bowl. Add the apples and stir to combine and evenly coat. Spoon the apple mixture onto the crust, leaving about 2 inches around the edges. Fold the crust inward and press to seal.

Bake the crostada for about 15 minutes or until the crust is golden brown. At this time, sprinkle chopped nuts over the apple mixture if wanted. Bake for at least another 5 minutes, or until the apples are tender. Slice and serve while warm and top with ice cream or whatever your heart desires!

Source: A Beckster Original

Cinnamon Spice Pancakes with Sauteed Apples

23 Jul

This is one of my favorite ways to make pancakes – the spiced pancakes are bursting with warm flavor and the apples add a nice texture with each bite that compliments the pancakes perfectly. It’s like an apple pie in breakfast form 🙂

Look how big and fluffy these cakes are – delish to the last bite!

Cinnamon Spice Pancakes with Sauteed Apples

2 cups all-purpose flour
4 tsp baking powder
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp salt
2 eggs, slightly beaten
2 cups milk
2 Tbsp honey
1 Tbsp vegetable oil

1 Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored, and thinly sliced
1 Tbsp butter
1 Tbsp cinnamon sugar
Maple Syrup

Combine the first 5 ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Combine the eggs, milk, honey, and oil in a separate bowl, then add this mixture to the dry ingredients. Stir together until just combined – make sure not to overmix! Let the batter sit until ready to cook.

In the meantime, melt the butter in a skillet. Add the apple slices and sprinkle with the cinnamon sugar. Stir to combine and cook until apples are soft.

Pour about 1/3 cup of batter on a nonstick griddle/skillet/pan. Flip when bubbles form, then cook on the other side until golden brown. Top your stack of pancakes with maple syrup and sauteed apples.

Source: Adapted from Taste of Home

Spiced Apple Cider

15 Jan

I recently had a hankering for some delicious apple cider and this recipe fit the bill! Just pop the ingredients in a crock pot and a few hours later, you have a nice, warm, wintery treat. The orange and spices infuse perfectly and create an amazing drink that’s great for a snowy day indoors. Yes, we actually had one of those in Texas!

The only change I made to the original recipe is using slices of fresh ginger rather than ground ginger. Just a personal preference : )

Spiced Apple Cider

2 quarts apple cider (should be right by the apple juice)
¼ cup brown sugar
4 slices fresh ginger
1 whole orange – unpeeled and cut into wedges
2 whole cinnamon sticks
1 tsp whole cloves
1 piece cheesecloth (Small Square)

Tie up cinnamon sticks, cloves, and slices of ginger into cheesecloth.

Add apple cider and all other ingredients into crock pot. Cover and simmer on low.

Cider will be ready in about 3 hours, but can continue simmering on low. Remove cheescloth bag and orange wedges, and serve! (This recipe yields approximately 10 – 12 servings.)

Leftovers can be stored in the fridge and reheated.

Source: Slightly adapted from Heidi at Tasty Kitchen

Apple Almond Crisp

14 Nov

This is similar to a previous apple crisp recipe I made, but I decided to add some amaretto and almonds to give it a nice nutty twist! I’m also submitting this to the current Kitchen Corners Cook Offwhere the theme is apples. Enjoy!

Apple Almond Crisp


4 Granny Smith apples
2/3 cups sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
2 Tbsp amaretto

1 and ½ cups all-purpose flour
⅓ cups sugar
⅓ cups firmly packed brown sugar
½ teaspoon cinnamon
½ cups slivered almonds
1 stick butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Peel, core, and dice apples. Place in a bowl and stir together with sugar, cinnamon, salt, and amaretto. Set aside.

In a separate bowl, combine flour, sugar, brown sugar, cinnamon, and almonds. Stir together. Drizzle melted butter gradually, stirring with a fork as you go until all is combined.

Pour apples into a baking dish; top with crumb topping.

Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

Place pan on top rack of oven for an additional 10 minutes, or until topping is golden brown.

Apple Hand Pies

5 Oct

Warm apple desserts are the best. Seriously. I could eat them every day. And at this rate, I actually am.

I saw this recipe on one of my fave food blogs yesterday and knew I had to make these ASAP. I had all the ingredients on hand, so why not? These were rather easy to make but did take some real prep time.

I realized while scarfing one of these down that they remind me of a homemade version of the little McDonald’s apple pies. I always like to eat the crust first and savor the warm apple center last, since it’s my favorite part. Weird? Oh well.

Here’s the recipe – enjoy! : )

Apple Hand Pies

Pie Crust:
2 sticks (8 ounces) cold unsalted butter
2 1/2 (12 ounces) cups all purpose flour
1 Tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (5 to 6 ounces) cold buttermilk

Pie Filling:
1 pound of McIntosh apples (2 medium)
1 pound of Granny Smith apples (2 medium)
1/2 teaspoon of lemon juice and 1/2 teaspoon of zest from 1/2 lemon
1/2 cup of sugar
1/4 teaspoon of salt
1 tablespoon of all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
1/4 ground nutmeg
Egg wash

For Crust:
Cut the butter into 1-inch pieces and place in the freezer to chill for 15 minutes. Measure out the buttermilk and store in the refrigerator to keep it cold (you could even put it in the freezer for a few minutes too).

Sift together the flour, sugar and salt in a large bowl. Take the cold butter from the freezer and toss it with the flour mixture.

Dump the cold butter cubes and flour mixture onto a large work area for rolling. With a rolling pin, roll the mixture, flattening the butter cubes with the flour into long, thin, floured butter sheets. Work quickly to ensure that the butter stays cold. Below is what the rolled butter and flour look like after I’ve gathered them together on the work surface a bit.

Place the flour and flattened butter back in the large bowl and chill for 10 minutes. When the butter is cold, remove the bowl from the refrigerator, make a small well in the center of the flour and butter mixture. Add the cold buttermilk to the bowl all at once.  Begin to bring the dough together with one hand.

Moisten all of the flour with the milk, using your hand to break up large clumps of milk and flour.  The dough will be rather shaggy, but you can add another tablespoon of buttermilk, if you see that all your flour isn’t moistened.  Form the dough into two disks.  The disks will be rough, and hard to shape together, but once they rest in the fridge for an hour, they’ll be easier to roll out.

Chill the dough for at least an hour in the refrigerator.  At this point, the dough will keep in the fridge for up to three days, or in the freezer for up to three weeks.  For freezing, roll the dough out into sheets and wrap them in plastic film.

For Apple Pie Filling:
Peel, core and cut apples in half, and dice. You want the dice to be rather small. It’ll make it easier to fill your hand pies. Then toss the diced apples with the lemon juice and zest. In a small bowl, mix sugar, flour, salt and spices together and toss with the diced apples. Set aside.

For Apple Hand Pie Assembly:
Okay, now…remove one half of your pie dough from the refrigerator and let it sit on the counter for 2-3 minutes. Roll the dough out to a 1/6-inch thickness. Grab a 5-inch biscuit cutter (or a cup/dish that is 5 inches in diameter) and cut out as many circles as possible.  I had to re-roll the dough a few times to use it all up. Place your dough circles out onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.  Return the baking sheet to the refrigerator for 15-20 minutes.  Take out your second pie dough half from the refrigerator and repeat the steps above.  You should end up with 13-15 dough circles.

Grab a small bowl of water, a small bowl with the egg wash and the bowl of the apple pie filling.  Remove the first baking sheet of dough circles from the fridge.  You might want to let the dough sit for a 1-2 minutes so they’re a bit more pliable.  If the dough is too cold, then it’ll break and crack when you try and fold it over.

Take a tablespoon of the apple pie filling and place it on one half of your dough circle.  Brush the bottom edge with a small amount of water and fold over the top half so it’s now a half moon shape. Take a fork and press the edges to bind them together. Brush with egg wash and make a slit on the top.  Repeat over and over until you’ve assembled all of your hand pies.  Place them back onto the parchment lined baking sheet and put them back in the fridge for another 15-20 minutes to chill.

At this time, pre-heat the oven 375 degrees. When the hand pies are done chilling, remove from the refrigerator and place in the piping hot oven for 20-30 minutes, or until golden brown.

You’ll know when they’re just about done because your house will be engulfed with the most amazing smell of spices and apples!

Place them on a cooling rack…or eat warm like I did!

Source: A Cozy Kitchen

A la mode is another good alternative ; )

Apple Crisp

4 Oct

I actually made this recipe a few weeks ago…sorry for the delay of something so delicious! The original recipe is for a pear crisp, but since we ‘re crazy about warm apple desserts in our house, I decided to swap. (but I bet the pears are amazing too!) This recipe is SO easy to make and is heavenly when served right out of the oven. (no worries, it reheats well too) It goes great with some vanilla bean ice cream too. And, I actually used to hate crumbles on top of desserts, but they eventually grew on me. This crumble is downright amazing…the nuts add a nice warm dimension.

I’ll actually have another amazing apple dessert recipe tomorrow….    : )

Apple Crisp

4 Granny Smith Apples
⅔ cups Sugar
¼ teaspoons Salt

1 and ½ cups All-purpose Flour
⅓ cups Sugar
⅓ cups firmly packed Brown Sugar
½ teaspoons Cinnamon
½ cups Pecans, Very Finely Chopped
1 stick Butter, Melted

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Peel, core, and dice apples. Place in a bowl and stir together with 2/3 cup sugar and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Set aside.

In a separate bowl, combine flour, sugar, brown sugar, cinnamon, and pecans. Stir together. Drizzle melted butter gradually, stirring with a fork as you go until all combined.

Pour apples into a baking dish; top with crumb topping.

Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

Place pan on top rack of oven for an additional 10 minutes, or until topping is golden brown.

Source: Slightly adapted from The Pioneer Woman (I just swapped fruit)