But let's recap. My Thanksgiving was spent out in Naperville, Illinois, where my aunt and her family live. My parents [in Minnesota] and my brother [currently in Missouri for Army training] also made the trek to the Chicago suburb. We're all over the place, huh? But fortunately we were all able to be under one roof for one of my favorite holidays, if even for a short while.
But my Thanksgiving was off to a great start the moment I got to my aunt's house.
Right before our early dinner, my aunt asked me to grab the wine. Unbeknownst to me, I snagged a bag in the fridge and brought it out to the table. The next couple of seconds were a bit of a blur but I remember my mom asking me what kind it was. I casually shrugged and started reading the label.
'Jess.' 'Bridesmaid.' 'Melissa.'
Those are basically the only three words I remember reading. But as the utter confusion passed, I started piecing it all together. My best friend, and Maid of Honor, was asking me to be in her wedding!
Mel is a huge wine connoisseur, so her 'invitation' was so completely her. Absolutely perfect and I couldn't be any more honored to stand by my beautiful best friend on the biggest day of her life.
See? A great start to my Thanksgiving.
Comically, the rest of the holiday went by rather quickly. We apparently got right down to business and the first round of 'Thanksgiving' was over in all of about 35 minutes. If that. But I guess that only alludes to the delicous-ness of the our meal: we were all heads down, forks to mouths. And then once we were done, we got back to catching up with everyone.
|The aftermath of Thanksgiving.|
And of course, there was dessert. Made by me. Unfortunately dessert is the only contribution I will ever have to any dinner party. But I think everyone agreed, this recipe didn't let me down.
From the crunchy toffee crumble to the luscious caramelized-apple filling overflowing in a homemade crust, what's not to love? And the fact that we only had a modest sliver left by the end of the night signifies there wasn't much we didn't love about it. Plus my papa requested this pie for Christmas. Musta been good then, huh?!
Well I hope everyone's enjoying the holidays, they always seem to fly by faster each year. Like I said, it's been busy our way, too, and hopefully I can get caught up sharing everything. But in the mean time...enjoy this pie!
Happy baking! .
Adapted from Handle the Heat
1-1/4 c. all purpose flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. sugar
1/2 c. cold unsalted butter, cut into small chunks
2 tbsp. cold sour cream
2 to 3 tbsp. cold water
Caramel Apple Filling:
6 large apples, peeled, cored, and thinly sliced
1 tbsp. lemon juice
1/2 c. packed light brown sugar
1/2 c. sugar
1/4 c. all purpose flour
1 tsp. cornstarch
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 c. heavy whipping cream
4 tbsp. butter
Toffee Streusel Topping:
1/4 c. all purpose flour
2 tbsp. sugar
1 tbsp. cold butter, cut into chunks
Scant 1/3 c. toffee bits
- For the crust, in the bowl of a food processor, pulse the flour, salt, and sugar until combined. Add butter and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse meal, with larger chunks of butter remaining. Add sour cream and pulse to combine. Drizzle two tablespoons of ice water over mixture and pulse until it just comes together without being wet, sticky, or crumbly (if dough doesn’t hold together when pinched between your fingers, add another tablespoon of water and pulse).
- Place the dough onto a large sheet of plastic wrap and shape into a disk. Chill in refrigerator until firm, at least 1 hour or up to 3 days.
- Let the dough sit at room temperature for 10 minutes before rolling out on a lightly floured work surface (keep turning dough after every roll to ensure it doesn’t stick to the counter and is of even thickness). Roll out into a 1/8-inch thick 13-inch circle. Gently place the dough over a 9-inch pie pan and press into the tin. Trim the dough, leaving a 1-inch overhang. Crimp or decorate edges and pierce the bottom of the crust all over with a fork. Freeze for 30 minutes, or until very firm.
- Heat oven to 375°F. Remove the pie shell from the freezer and place a double sheet of foil over the shell, pressing the foil gently across the bottom and up the sides of the pie. Place two cups pie weights or dry beans over the parchment. Bake 20 minutes or until crust is dry and light in color. Carefully remove the parchment and weights and continue baking for another 12 minutes, or until just turning golden.
- Meanwhile, for the filling, combine apples, lemon juice, light brown sugar, sugar, flour, cornstarch, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, vanilla extract, and heavy whipping cream in a large bowl. Melt butter in a large heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Add the apple mixture and cook 8 minutes or until the apples begin to soften. Pour the apple mixture into the pie crust.
- For the topping, in a medium bowl, combine flour and sugar. Cut butter into the flour with a fork to form coarse crumbs. Stir in the toffee bits and sprinkle over apple mixture. Wrap the edges of the pie crust with a crust shield or foil. Bake 35 to 40 minutes or until crust is golden brown. Let cool before serving.
Yield: 8 servings