Carolina Bed and Breakfast

The Kitchen Garden

Notes, recipes, and thoughts of an innkeeper

Apple Crumble with Vanilla-Bourbon Caramel: A Winter Treat

Posted on by Susan Murray

Fresh Apples, Buttery Crumble and Caramel Sauce

Fresh Apples, Buttery Crumble and Caramel Sauce

Three of my favorite things are snow in Asheville, apples, and caramel.  A snowfall of any significant amount only happens once or twice a year here so at the Carolina Bed & Breakfast we still thrill to its occurrence.  As a rule it doesn’t last long.  A day or two of warm sunshine and all that’s left is a few puddles and a sadly deflated snowman or two.  But it’s glorious when it’s snowing.  The town shuts down.  Roads are empty except for the occasional car and the shouts of children (young and old) can be heard from the parks and hills as they rushed to get their sledding in before the slope turns into mud.

After a long walk, I return to the house ready to prepare for  our weekend guests. The slower pace of winter gives me plenty of time to experiment with recipes and I had one in mind:  Apple Crumble with Vanilla-Bourbon Caramel.

I needed this recipe in a bar or cupcake form so that it could easily be put in a guest’s room for an evening treat.  For this first rendition I have made bars but I think I may trying using my mini-cheesecake tins the next time to see if I can get something more elegant!

APPLE CRUMBLE WITH VANILLA-BOURBON CARAMEL

For the Base:

Oven temp: 300 (for base), 350 for the bars

Cooking time: 15 minutes plus 30 minutes

½ cup (1 stick) cold butter cut in cubes
¼ cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
Pinch of salt

Line an 8” square baking pan with aluminum foil.

Place all of the ingredients for the base in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until it looks like small crumbs. Press into the prepared pan and bake for 15 minutes.
Remove from oven and increase oven temperature to 350 degrees

For the Apple Filling:

4 apples, peeled and thinly sliced (about 3-4 cups)
2 tbs flour
2 tbs sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
Pinch of ground nutmeg

Toss all of the ingredients together until the apples are well coated. Spread on top of prepared base.

For the Crumble Topping

½ cup Oatmeal
1/3 cup brown sugar
¼ tsp cinnamon
¼ cup cold butter cut in cubes

Place all of the ingredients in the bowl of your food processor (no need to clean it after making the base). Pulse once or twice until the butter is cut in and it resembles coarse meal. Spread over the apple filling.

Bake for 30-35 minutes until the crumble is lightly browned. Cool completely.

Lift the bars out of the pan using the aluminum foil and cut into bars. Drizzle with any commercial caramel sauce before serving. At the Carolina Bed & Breakfast we like to use Vanilla-Bourbon Caramel Sauce from the Looking Glass Creamery, a local creamery.

Serve warm or at room temperature.

While you are enjoy your Apple Crumble here are some pictures of us enjoying the snow!

A late night walk in the snow had us jumping for joy!

A late night walk in the snow had us jumping for joy!

The Snow Had no Intention of Stopping!

The Snow Had no Intention of Stopping!

Fun at Night Translates into Work in the Morning

Fun at Night Translates into Work in the Morning

Snowman

 

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