Caramel Apple Pie…Cookies!

These cookies are both simple yet complex… Delicious and addictive.. and everything in between. Apple pie is such a comfort food, as are cookies, so these are a great combination for a cold, winters day. As Christmas is among us, these are a perfect dessert to have around for family & friends.

One of the things that makes these cookies so good is the pie crust. Don’t  mess around with it! If your dough begins to soften, pop it in the freezer for a minute or two. It will not cut into clean circles if you have sticky, soft dough.

I used a green apple for the filling. I like a sour apple bite to go a long with the sweetness of the cinnamon-sugar mixture, and caramel.

Recipe adapted from Smitten Kitchen.

{Apple Pie Cookies}

Crust:

2 1/2 cups flour

2 tbs white sugar

1 tsp salt

2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, VERY cold

1/2 cup water, very cold.

Filling:

3 medium apples (any kind)

1/3 cup sugar

1 tsp ground cinnamon

pinch of ground nutmeg

any other spices you like in your apple pie

I used soft caramels cut in half

To finish:

1 large eggs

Sugar for garnish

Tools:

Rolling pin

Baking sheets lined with parchment paper

Fork

Pastry Brush

Cookie cutter

Directions:

Whisk together flour, sugar and salt in a large bowl. Using a two forks or your fingertips, work the butter into the flour until the biggest pieces of butter are the size of small peas. (You’ll want to chop your butter into small bits first). Gently stir in the ice water with a rubber spatula, mixing it until a mass forms. Get your hands in the bowl and knead it just two or three times to form a ball. Divide dough in half. Wrap each half in plastic wrap and flatten a bit, like a disc. Chill in fridge for at least an hour or up to two days.

While dough is chilling, prepare a smorgasbord of  bowls. In the first, pour water. Leave 2nd bowl empty. In 3rd, mix cinnamon, sugar and nutmeg. In the fourth one, place a little bit of flour to dust your surface and dip your fork for crimping. In the fifth one, whisk an egg with one teaspoon of water until smooth. In the last one add some coarse or regular sugar for decorating the tops of the pies.

On a well-floured counter, roll out your pie dough pretty thin, a little shy of 1/8-inch thick. Cut out as many rounds as possible with cookie cutters. Place onto baking sheet once done and put back into fridge to continue chilling.

Prepare apples: Peel your apples. Cut thin slices from one side of whole apple, stopping when you hit the core. Repeat on opposite side. I got about 10 usable slices from each side of my small-medium apples.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Now the fun begins! With your first disk, lightly dampen one side of the bottom disk; this will help with sealing. Toss apple slice in cinnamon-sugar mixture, and place on bottom disk. Take 1/2 a piece of caramel and place on top of apple before sealing. Cover and seal with fork by stamping a long the sides. For a decorative touch, make for slits on top of your pies. Brush with egg wash and sprinkle with sugar once placed onto baking sheet.

Bake your apple “pies” for 25 minutes, or until puffy and golden. Place on cooling rack to cool before eating. Or get eager like me and eat right away, when caramel is hot a gooey.

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