2/3 cup good-quality caramel sauce, warmed
2 ripe Bartlett pears, peeled, cored, and sliced
3/4 cup cranberries
1 cup flour
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup milk
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1. Coat the cooking insert of a 5- to 6-qt. slow-cooker* all over with cooking-oil spray. Evenly spread caramel on bottom, then top with an even layer of pears. Sprinkle with cranberries.
2. Whisk together flour, sugar, salt, baking powder, milk, and butter in a medium bowl until mostly smooth with only tiny lumps remaining. Pour over fruit and spread with a spatula to cover evenly.
3. Cover and cook until a toothpick inserted in cake portion comes out clean, about 1 hour and 20 minutes on high or 2 1/4 hours on low.
4. Remove basin from slow-cooker and let pudding cake cool 5 minutes. Spoon onto plates, pear side up, and dollop with crème fraîche.
*You can use a 4-qt. slow-cooker, but may need to increase the cooking time.
5 apples (we prefer Granny Smith and Fuji varieties, 6 to 8 oz. each)
14 ounces (about 50 pieces) unwrapped soft caramels (such as Kraft)
10 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate
1 cup sprinkles (your choice of color)
1. Rinse and dry 5 apples (we prefer Granny Smith and Fuji varieties, 6 to 8 oz. each). Insert a craft or popsicle stick halfway into the stem end of each apple. Line a baking sheet with plain parchment paper or wax paper that has been generously coated with butter.
2. In a bowl set over a pan of simmering water, combine 14 ounces (about 50 pieces) unwrapped soft caramels (such as Kraft) and 2 tablespoons water. Stir frequently until melted and smooth.
3. Holding the stick, dip each apple one at a time into the caramel about three-quarters of the way. Swirl to coat evenly.
4. Hold stem side up and use a knife to scrape excess caramel off the bottom of apple back into bowl. Place apples on the parchment paper or buttered waxed paper and refrigerate until caramel is firm, about 5 minutes.
5. Return pan of water to a boil; remove from heat. Place 10 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate in another bowl and set over pan. Stir frequently until chocolate is melted and smooth.
6. Dip the bottom half of each apple in chocolate, turning to coat evenly. Hold stem side up and use a knife to scrape excess chocolate off bottom of apple and back into bowl. Place each coated apple on the parchment paper or buttered waxed paper and refrigerate until chocolate is slightly set, about 10 minutes.
7. Place about 1 cup sprinkles (your choice of color) on a plate. Roll bottom third of each apple in sprinkles to coat. Refrigerate until chocolate is firm, about 15 minutes.
2 quarts apple cider
3 cups heavy cream
1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk
4 cups sugar
3/4 cup light corn syrup
1/4 cup water
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 stick unsalted butter, cold; diced
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 pinch of ground allspice
1 pinch of ground cloves
Neutral oil, such as canola or grapeseed, for brushing
In a large saucepan, simmer the apple cider over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until reduced to 1 cup, about 1 hour. Pour the reduced cider into a bowl.
Line a 9-by-13-inch rimmed pan with foil and coat the foil with nonstick cooking spray. In a medium saucepan, combine the heavy cream and condensed milk and bring to a simmer over moderate heat; keep the mixture warm over low heat.
In another large saucepan, combine the sugar with the reduced apple cider, corn syrup, water and salt and bring to a boil. Simmer over moderate heat until the sugar dissolves, about 5 minutes. Carefully whisk in the butter until melted. Gradually whisk in the warm cream mixture until incorporated. Cook over moderately low heat, stirring frequently, until a golden caramel forms and the temperature reaches 245° on a candy thermometer, about 45 minutes. Stir in the cinnamon, allspice and cloves and scrape the caramel into the prepared pan. Let cool completely, then refrigerate the caramel overnight.
Lightly brush a sheet of parchment paper with oil. Invert the caramel onto the parchment and peel off the foil. Using a sharp knife, cut the caramel into 1-inch-wide strips, then cut the block crosswise into 1/2-inch rectangles. Wrap each caramel in a square of parchment paper or a candy wrapper and twist the ends to seal. Serve or pack the caramels into boxes.
2 1/4 cups apple cider, divided
2 1/4 cups granulated sugar, divided
1 tablespoon stick margarine or butter
3 cups sliced peeled cooking apple (such as Braeburn, Rome, or McIntosh)
2 1/2 tablespoons dry breadcrumbs
1/2 cup stick margarine or butter, softened
1 tablespoon grated lemon rind
1 (8-ounce) block fat-free cream cheese
3 large eggs
6 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, divided
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup low-fat buttermilk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon powdered sugar
Bring 2 cups cider to a boil in a large, heavy saucepan over high heat. Cook until reduced to 1/2 cup (about 20 minutes). Reduce heat to medium-high; stir in 1/2 cup granulated sugar. Cook 5 minutes or until sugar dissolves and cider is thick and dark-colored, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat; cool 1 minute. Stir in 1 tablespoon margarine. Stir in apple; cook 15 minutes over medium-high heat or until the liquid is absorbed, stirring frequently. Remove from heat; cool. (If apple mixture hardens, place it over low heat until softened).
Preheat oven to 325°.
Coat a 12-cup Bundt pan with cooking spray; dust with breadcrumbs.
Combine 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar, 1/2 cup margarine, lemon rind, and cream cheese in a large bowl; beat at medium speed of a mixer until well-blended (about 5 minutes). Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in 2 tablespoons lemon juice. Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour, baking soda, and salt. Add flour mixture to sugar mixture alternately with buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Fold in apple mixture. Pour into prepared pan; bake at 325° for 1 1/2 hours or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.
Combine 1/4 cup cider, 1/4 cup granulated sugar, 1/4 cup lemon juice, and vanilla; let stand until sugar dissolves, stirring occasionally. Cool cake in pan 5 minutes, and pierce with a wooden skewer in several places. Pour cider mixture over cake in pan, and let stand 10 minutes. Remove from pan, and cool completely on a wire rack. Sift powdered sugar over top of cake.
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 1/2 vanilla bean
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 3 large egg yolks, at room temperature
- Fine sea salt
- Whipped cream for serving
1. Heat the oven to 300°F.
2. Pour the cream into a small saucepan. Split the vanilla bean and scrape the seeds into the cream; toss the scraped pod in there too. Turn the heat to low to gently warm the cream.
3. Reserve 2 tablespoons of the sugar. Pour the remaining sugar and the 1 1/2 tablespoons of water into a heavy-bottomed saucepan, set over medium heat, and stir until the sugar dissolves. Then crank the heat to high and let the liquid bubble away—don’t stir, just swirl the pan occasionally—until it turns dark amber. This takes about 4 minutes, but watch closely, because it happens fast. Reduce the heat to medium.
4. Moving quickly, fish the vanilla pod out of the cream (rinse it and save for another use) and slowly stir the warm cream into the caramel. Once it comes to a boil (this will happen fast), remove from the heat and let the mixture cool for about 10 minutes.
5. Whisk the egg yolks with the reserved sugar and a pinch of sea salt in a medium bowl. Whisk a little of the cream-caramel mixture into the egg yolks, then gradually whisk in the rest until it’s all incorporated.
6. Strain the mixture into a pitcher or large measuring cup and pour it into four 6-ounce ramekins (see Tips and Techniques). Place the ramekins in a shallow baking pan filled halfway with cold water. If you like your caramel a bit salty, like me, sprinkle a few grains of sea salt on top of each pudding. Cook for 1 hour to 1 hour and 15 minutes, until just set.
7. Chill the puddings for at least 3 hours; but it’s best if you can chill them overnight. Serve with freshly whipped cream.
pastry for single-crust pie
1/2 cup sugar
3 tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon salt
6 cups thinly sliced peeled apples
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup quick-cooking rolled oats
1/2 cup butter
1/4 cup caramel ice cream topping
1/2 cup chopped pecans
Prepare pastry for single-crust pie, being careful not to stretch dough too much.
Place in pie plate and trim and crimp the edge.
In a large mixing bowl, stir together the sugar, flour, cinnamon, and salt.
Add apple slices and gently toss until they are coated well.
Transfer mixture to pie.
FOR CRUMB TOPPING: Stir together brown sugar, flour, and oats.
Using a pastry blender, cut in the butter until topping resembles coarse crumbs.
Sprinkle over apple mixture in pie.
To prevent over-browning while baking, cover edge of pie with foil.
Bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 25 minutes.
Remove foil and bake 25 to 30 minutes more, or until top is golden.
Remove from oven.
Drizzle top with caramel topping; sprinkle with pecans.
Cool on wire rack and serve!
1/4 cup butter
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup light Karo syrup
1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk
Combine all ingredients.
Cook 6 minutes, stirring every two minutes.
Stir and pour into lightly greased dish.
Cut, wrap in wax paper & store in air tight container.