Hey, pssst! I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but we haven’t posted in a while. If you want the long version, I posted why on our Facebook page a short while back, so hop on over to that if you’re interested. The short version: my house flooded a few days before Thanksgiving. I think we can all agree that this is kind of like the crap icing on top of a crap cake year sort of deal. It really has been a stressfull year for my family and I, and my own dear Sis Blogging Partner needed to concentrate on school as well. So – break time! We will likely continue to be more sporadic in the next few months as well because, what with the flooding of the house and all, I will be in and out of renovation detail mode. You may see a recipe a time or two reviewed here, or I might do some home reno update posts, too, if we can ever get that off the ground. For now, thankfully, we bring you delicious pie. Me oh my!
Oh, what’s this? Could it be? Yes – it’s delicious Puff Pastry! It’s another edition of All the Things You Can Do With Puff Pastry! This is probably, if you haven’t noticed, one of our favorite segments of the ‘ole blog. Mmm, pastry.
Sometimes I purposefully look for a recipe that is very different and unique, but let’s face it. Apple pie is awesome and you don’t really need to dress it up too much. For the holidays, though, throw in some dried cranberries and you do have a slight twist that’s neither difficult to include or expensive. Whallah, fine folks!
To demonstrate just how easy it is, we have generously included the above photo of dried cranberries effortlessly gliding into the bowl of apples, flour, sugar and so on.
No applause, just…you’re welcome.
When working with puff pastry, always flour whatever surface you’ll be rolling it out on. Remember to work carefully yet quickly. It has a lot of butter in it and will get difficult to work with the closer it gets to room temperature. Keep the second piece in the fridge, covered with plastic wrap, if you prefer until ready to use.
Oh – and this stuff can be thawed nicely overnight, in its package, in the fridge.
That was your Puff Pastry 101.
Rolling, rolling, rolling, get that pastry rolling.
By the way, this is the largest we’ve ever rolled puff pastry. You truly will test its buttery, flaky powers of puffiness. And you will win!
By the time you’re done rolling out and preparing the bottom layer of pastry, the apples, flour, sugar and other goodies have melded nicely and the juices should be thickened.
It almost looks like too many apples but….naaaaah! Pile them on up!
To easily apply the top layer of rolled puff pastry, re-roll it up onto and around your rolling pin (like rewinding toilet paper back onto a roll, in essence), lay it at one end of the pie and roll it onto the whole thing. This way you don’t stretch the pastry out any further. Makes life easier!
For whatever reason, the recipe calls for the slightly smaller crust as the bottom, and the top crust is about an inch or so bigger than that. You have to use milk to seal the edges together and then pinch them closed. To do this, the bottom crust is pulled up and over the top, but we thought it might make more sense next time to have the bigger crust on the bottom. Do whichever seems easiest for you. Seal one side with the milk and pinching at a time.
In the home stretch portion of the recipe, brush the entire top crust with a little milk. Use whatever type you have on hand, low-fat, whole, etc.
While the milk is still damp, dust the crust with sugar, which will help give it a golden hue and be even more delicious. I may have, er, been liberal with this part.
This is a really beautiful, big pie. And it smells heavenly at this point! We let ours cool for about ten minutes after taking it out of the oven.
And then this happened! Oh yeah. A simple vanilla-scented glaze gives this pie yet another tasty level.
The cranberries also give the pie another twist, and they worked perfectly with the apples. The two flavors were just meant to be together. The apples are perfectly cooked, neither too soggy or crisp and the glaze makes this all more like a yummy apple pastry that, when cool, you really can pick up and eat with your hands if you like. The puff pastry was a great option for a go-to ready crust. If you’re still in need of a holiday dessert that’s easy to make, and even easier to eat for all it’s deliciousness, this one’s for you! Merry Christmas, everyone!
Apple-Cranberry Slab Pie
Prep Time: 25 minutes Cook Time: 50-55 minutes Level: Easy Serves: 12
- 2 1/2 pounds cooking apples, peeled, cored, and thinly sliced (about 7 cups)
- 2/3 cup granulated sugar
- 2/3 cup dried cranberries
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 17.3 ounce package (2 sheets) frozen puff pastry, thawed
- Coarse sugar
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
- Dash salt
- 4 teaspoons milk
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Lightly grease a 15x10x1-inch baking pan; set aside. For filling, in a large bowl stir together apples, granulated sugar, dried cranberries, flour, and cinnamon; set aside.
On a lightly floured surface, unfold one sheet of pastry. Roll pastry into a 15×10-inch rectangle. Transfer to the prepared baking pan. Spread filling over pastry to within 1 inch of the outside edge.
Unfold the remaining sheet of pastry; roll into a 16×11-inch rectangle. Place pastry on top of filling. Moisten edge of bottom pastry with milk. Fold bottom pastry over top pastry; gently press edges to seal. Using a sharp knife, cut slits in pastry. Brush top lightly with milk and sprinkle with coarse sugar.
Bake for 50 to 55 minutes or until filling is bubbly and pastry is puffed and golden. If necessary to prevent over browning, cover tart loosely with foil for the last 10 to 15 minutes of baking.
For icing, in a small bowl stir together powdered sugar, vanilla, and salt. Stir in enough of the 4 to 5 teaspoons milk to reach drizzling consistency. Drizzle icing over warm tart. Cool completely on a wire rack. Cut into bars.
As noted above, you may want to switch up the crusts and use the bigger piece on the bottom since it gets pulled up and over the top one to seal it all up. Remember to use all the apples – they will cook down as with any fruit pie. Last but not least, we felt the sugar could be reduced in the pie filling. This is a sweet dessert, what with the sugar in the filling, more sugar on the crust and a sugar glaze on top. We did need to cover our pie with foil to keep it from browning too much.