Food

apple & cranberry crumble pie

Its pie season, the best kind of dessert season. We don’t eat pumpkin pie or apple pie in my family sadly, my life is full of pecan pie that I lobby against every year to no avail. However, just because it won’t be on my thanksgiving table doesn’t mean I can’t take it to a different thanksgiving. Honestly the best part of ‘friendsgivings’ is that there are no limits, multiple meals means multiple menus. So this pie (and some veggies) came to one friendsgiving already and is headed to another (along with this BA pumpkin pie) tomorrow. Its tart enough to not get lost in the richness of seasonal desserts, filled with warm spices to make it feel like autumn in the best way, and fuss free thanks to a crumble topping that saves you from latticing pie crust until you cry.

I love this pie crust from Erin McDowell (the pie queen, I am very excited for her upcoming pie cookbook), and this video is great for really showing each step! I like to leave mine in the fridge for a day or two so it’s nice and cold and saves time when it comes to assembling and baking.

pie crust

1 pie crust (the recipe above, or any other)

  • par-bake pie crust until just taking on colour (about 20 minutes in a 400 degree oven) – this will keep the bottom of the pie from getting soggy from the filling and help it travel well
  • let cool before filling

filling

3 medium tart apples (peeled and sliced)

2 c cranberries

1 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp nutmeg

1/2 tsp cardamom

1/2 c brown sugar

3 tbs butter

2 tbs cornstarch

  • in a large pan on the stove, melt butter and add spices and sugar
  • add in cranberries and apples, cook until cranberries have burst and apples have softened
  • add cornstarch tbs at a time until filling is thick, but still easy to stir

crumble topping

1/4 c brown sugar

1/4 c demerara sugar (or granulated sugar if you don’t have it)

4 tbs butter

1 c oats

1/2 tsp of cinnamon, nutmeg, and cardamom

  • combine in bowl, rubbing in butter until crumble forms

assemble and bake

  • pour filling into pie, and top with crumble in the middle
  • in a 400 degree F oven, bake for 20 minutes or until crumble is golden. If using a glass pie pan, crust will have take on colour
  • let cool before slicing, but the filling should hold its shape to slice. best with ice cream and or spiced whipped cream

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Food

peanut butter & chocolate tart

This tart was my Dad’s birthday dessert, because I knew there was no going wrong with chocolate and peanut butter. The filling is inspired by peanut butter buttercream, which I have seen him eat straight from the mixer, but with cream cheese to play up the texture and tang from peanut butter. This isn’t a particularly sweet dessert, but you could easily make it a little more sweet tooth friendly by using milk chocolate for the ganache!

This tart crust is my absolute favourite, it’s just about fool proof and the foil trick (from Smitten Kitchen) is a million times better than dealing with pie weights. You could do it by hand, or with a pastry cutter, but a food processor makes the trickiest part of this dessert much faster!

Tart Crust

1 1/4 c flour

1/4 tsp salt

1/4 c powdered sugar

1/2 c (one stick) cold butter, in pieces

1/2 tsp vanilla

  • preheat oven to 350
  • in the bowl of food processor, combine first three ingredients until mixed
  • add butter and vanilla, blitz until combined and dough comes together
  • set aside marble sized piece of dough (for future repairs)
  • press dough into tart or pie pan, coming all the way up the sides and getting dough as even as possible
  • freeze for 10-15 minutes
  • prick with fork all over and up sides
  • press lightly oiled foil onto dough, no pie weights needed
  • bake for 15 minutes covered, then slowly peel off foil and bake for another 5, crust should be lightly golden
  • chill tart case

Peanut Butter Filling

1/2 c cream cheese

2 tbs butter

1/4 c powdered sugar

3/4 c peanut butter (I microwave the jar to make it easier to measure)

1/2 tsp vanilla

  • beat all ingredients together in the bowl of a stand mixer (or really really hard by hand) until fluffier
  • chill until ready to fill crust
  • scrape into cooked and chilled crust, smooth into an even layer, place in freezer for 10 minutes

Chocolate Ganache

1 c semi sweet chocolate chips

1/2 c heavy cream

  • in a small saucepan or microwave safe bowl, slowly melt until incorporated
  • let cool slightly
  • pour over cold tart
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