Candy & Caramel Apple Pie

Well, today is the One Year Anniversary of my Selfish Cooking Facebook Page!!  I think it is true that time does fly by as you get older – ha!!  With the Fall weather already here and Halloween and Thanksgiving coming up soon (yes, these creep up on you) I wanted to make something a little special .  I’ve been wanting to make this for a little while, so just as a little preview of different desserts with pecans, apples and pumpkin for Thanksgiving I present you Candy & Caramel Apple Pie!  I just made minor changes & adjustments, but the changes are minor so it shouldn’t change the taste much.
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Crust: 2 cups graham cracker crumbs
3 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/3 cup butter, melted
3/4 cup – 1 cup caramel ice cream topping (I used Trader Joe’s caramel syrup)
1/2  cup chopped pecans

Apple Filling:
5 Honey Crisp apples (peeled, cored, sliced very thin)
5 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon

Cream Cheese Topping: 8 oz. cream cheese
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 egg
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 cup sugar

Topping: 1 cup heavy cream, whipped
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 cup caramel ice cream topping (I used Trader Joe’s caramel syrup)
1/4 cup chopped pecans

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

2. In a medium bowl, combine the crumbs, sugar, cinnamon and melted butter. Mix well and press into a 8-inch springform pan and up the sides. Bake for 6 to 8 minutes until golden in color. Remove pie shell from oven and cool completely. Pour caramel into pie shell and sprinkle with 1 cup of chopped pecans. Refrigerate pie shell while making apple filling.

3. In a large (12-inch) skillet over medium heat, melt butter and add brown sugar, salt and cinnamon. Stir with a wooden spoon. Add apples and stir. Cook over medium to medium-high heat for 15 to 20 minutes until apples are softened and tender. Let cool for 10 minutes and pour into pie shell. Reduce oven to 350 degrees F.

4. In a medium bowl, using a hand-held mixer on low speed, combine cream cheese and sugar for about 1 minute until smooth. Add egg, lemon juice and vanilla and beat for 1 minute or until fully blended. Pour over apple filling in pie shell. Bake for 30 minutes until an inserted knife comes out clean. Remove pie from oven and let cool. Refrigerate for 4 hours. Let stand outside the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

5. Top with whipped cream, caramel and pecans, and swirl with a knife. Slice and serve.

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My opinion:  I’m so so soooo happy I made this!! I love graham cracker crust, especially this one because the caramel has seeped into the crust while it baked – oh my!!   This is definitely a decadent dessert; it does involve multiple steps, but it’s pretty simple to make.  If you want deeper pie I think you can use the 6 inch springform pan (probably adjust the baking time a bit so that it cooks through).   I only ate half a slice because I felt like I had to restrain myself and I keep on thinking about the left over slice in the fridge… 

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