But this is about apples. Also in the box were various kinds of apples, all very authentic with their matte, just picked off the tree look. We have been eating them like crazy, but I decided to do something extra special with some of them. As I have mentioned before I don't really like pastry, but do love the baked apple cinnamon taste of the filling. My all time favorite dessert is cheese cake and one of my favorite cookies is shortbread...when I came across the recipe for this apple tart on the Joy of Baking website there was no decision to made. Start to preheat the oven!
1 cup whole wheat flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup icing sugar
1/2 cup (113 grams) cold unsalted butter cut into small pieces
One 8-ounce package of light cream cheese, at room temperature
1/4 cup granulated white sugar
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tbsp granulated white sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
4 cups BC apples, cut into 1/4 inch slices (about 2-3 large apples)
1/4 cup sliced almonds
Crust: In the bowl of your food processor, place the flour, salt, and sugar and pulse to blend together. Add the butter and pulse until dough just begins to come together. Pat the dough onto the bottom and one inch up the sides of the pan. Cover with plastic wrap and place in refrigerator while you make the filling. My crust was still quite powdery, it didn’t “come together” as the recipe states. I was thinking flop for sure, but it turned out fine. I still was able to press it into the pan.
Filling: In a food processor process the cream cheese until smooth. Add the sugar and mix well. Blend in the egg and vanilla extract and process until smooth. Remove the crust from the fridge and pour in the filling.
Topping: Combine the sugar and cinnamon in a bowl. Toss the sliced apples in the sugar mixture. Spoon the apples evenly over the cream cheese layer and sprinkle with almonds. Place the spring form pan on a larger baking sheet to catch any drips.
Bake at 450 degrees F for 10 minutes. Reduce heat to 400 degrees F and bake for another 25 to 30 minutes or until the crust is brown, the apples are tender when pierced with a sharp knife, and the filling is almost set. Remove from oven and place on wire rack to cool. Sprinkle with icing sugar and serve at room temperature. Leftovers can be covered with plastic wrap and refrigerated. Adapted from here.
I would also like to plug my hand blender that is pictured above (I used this in place of a food processor with this recipe). Love this thing...I hesitate to call it a gadget as that implies something more gimmicky. It is a motor top portion that attaches to either an emersion blender (great for soups and making baby foods), food processing unit (use it for fresh salsa, guacamole, dips) and a whisk attachment (perfect for small jobs where a mixer is over kill). The best part - all dishwasher safe. Every time I use it it makes me happy.
Anyways the tart was a hit all around. It is also a way to appreciate the changing seasons and all they have to offer. The smell of apples baking evokes crisp mornings, crunching leaves underfoot and all else that fall means to you.