Apple-Berry Pie

I realize that Thanksgiving is less than a week away and my blog has been completely silent, while other baking blogs out there have been bursting with delicious recipe ideas. But seriously where did the time go?! How is it that we are already at the end November?

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Β So, I decided to bring to you an Apple-Berry lattice pie!

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Β For me it’s just not Thanksgiving without a pie, or two, or three…:) Wouldn’t you agree? Please comment and tell me your favorite kind of pie, I’m really curious!

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I’m planning on making this for this year’s Thanksgiving dinner along with a pumpkin pie (I hope it turns out well)

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I usually make a Cranberry-Berry pie, but this time I tried an Apple-Berry version since I had more apples on hand and less berries. In the fall/winter I usually use frozen berries since they’re not in season, I don’t let the weather take away my berry pie. πŸ™‚

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Now, please forgive the quality of the pictures…it seems like I always end up baking towards the evening, and we all know that natural light is the best for food photography, but when your light is gone, you have to accept this…

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Just trust me when I tell you this was one beautiful pie! I’m so glad I learned how to make a lattice top, it really just brings this to a whole new level of beauty. And of course the test is always in the taste, and this pie has nailed it! The apples and the berries come together beautifully in a delicious blend.

So what are your plans for this Thanksgiving? Are you hosting or visiting? What are you making? Besides two pies, I’m making lots of buttermilk biscuits, cornbread muffins, and probably some pumpkin shaped pretzel rolls (hopefully mine will turn out nearly as good as the ones down below). Check back soon to see how they turn out!

Pumpkin shaped dinner buns. Fast and easy ideas for a fall pumpkin...

Apple-Berry Pie

Bottom Crust:

2 cups flour
1/4 tsp. salt
2 sticks (1 cup) very cold butter
4 tbsp. water (very cold)
2 tbsp. vinegar
1 tsp. vanilla

Filling:

6 Apples (diced)
1/2 cup cranberries
1/4 cup blackberries
1/4 cup blueberries
1 cup white sugar
1/3 cups brown sugar
1 tbsp. lemon juice
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 1/2 arrowroot powder (you can also use cornstarch)

Directions:

Cut the butter into the flour and salt with a pastry cutter. Add the vanilla, vinegar, and water, and mix until dough forms. It might be a little crumbly but that’s okay. Refrigerate the dough for at least one hour. Peel core and dice the apples. Ad the white sugar, brown sugar, lemon juice, cinnamon and arrowroot powder. Pour the apple mixture in a medium saucepan and place it on the stove over medium heat until the apples become slightly tender. Add the berries and mix. Pour the filling in the pie pan lined with the pie crust. Roll out the remaining dough into about a 8″ circle and cut outstrips that are about 1/2″ wide. Brush some egg wash all over the edge and place your strips in a criss cross pattern all over the top and trim off the extra dough. Brush the top of the stripes with a bit more egg wash, bake the pie for about 25 to 30 minutes at 350 or until golden brown. Allow it to cool completely before serving.

Enjoy!

Jessica the Baker

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Chocolate Mousse Cream Puffs

Does anybody still get Taste of Home magazines through mail? That seems so old fashioned nowadays with all the recipes that you can find with the simple click of a mouse. We used to get them, and now we have a whole stack of them sitting there, mostly unused. While we haven’t tried that many recipes from them, our favorite eclair/cream puff recipe is from one of their issues. We’ve been using it for years, and it’s hands down our favorite recipe. I just realized that I never shared any eclair/cream puff recipes with you!Β  And I think I know why. Before I can take any pictures of them, they’re gone! πŸ™‚

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Last Monday I made mini eclairs to bring to our friends, and I had leftover heavy cream and chocolate ganache. Thus these chocolate mousse cream puffs came to be. Waste not, want not right? πŸ™‚ For the longest time I didn’t know the difference between a cream puff and an eclair, until I looked it up. πŸ™‚

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So they say that eclairs are oblong shaped and filled with different kinds of fillings (like creams, whip cream, custards, etc.) and covered with chocolate ganache or any icing. Cream puffs on the other hand are smaller and round. They’re usually filled with whip cream, custards, or many times ice cream. They are usuallyΒ  dusted with powdered sugar, or even chocolate ganache.I guess the biggest difference between them is the shape…because you can use the same pastry dough and filling for both. So I think I’ll just call these cream puffs.

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When I made the mini eclairs I kept the same shape as a cream puff (instead of making them long oval shaped) but filled some with vanilla pudding and some with chocolate pudding…yum! The vanilla ones were topped with chocolate ganache, and I left the chocolate ones just with a dusting of powdered sugar since they were already filled with chocolate pudding

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These cream puffs were gone pretty fast! Of course, ice cream is a dessert’s best friend so that’s what we ate these with. Actually ice cream is a dessert all on it’s own, but I meant a baked dessert. πŸ™‚ Fruit would also work divine with these…

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Whatever you eat these with, they are extremely delicious with that chocolate mousse filling!

Hopefully I’ll be able to share with you my eclairs soon…that is if my family requests them in the near future…:)

Chocolate Mousse Cream Puffs

Ingredients:
Puffs:

1/2 cups water
1/4 cups butter, cubed1/8 tsp. salt
1/2 cup AP flour
2 eggs

Chocolate Mousse:

1 pint heavy cream
4 oz. semisweet chocolate
1 tsp. butter
1/8 salt
Powdered sugar

Making Cream Puffs

Bring water, butter and salt to a boil in a saucepan. Add the flour all at once; stir briskly until the mixture leaves the side of the pan and forms a ball. Remove from heat; let stand for 5 minutes to allow mixture to cool before adding the eggs. Beat well after adding each egg. Continue beating until mixture is smooth and shiny. Drop dough 3 in. apart onto a greased baking sheet. Bake at 400 degrees for about 20-30 min. or until golden brown.

While the puffs are baking make the chocolate mousse. Heat 1/3 cup of cream in a small saucepan over medium heat until just below boiling point. Pour cream over chocolate and let it sit for 1 minute. Add the butter and whisk until everything is smooth and combined. Allow the chocolate to cool. In a mixing bowl pour the rest of the heavy cream and beat until stiff peaks. Fold the cooled chocolate in the whipped cream. If you feel like your chocolate mousse isn’t sweet enough, add a few tablespoons of powdered sugar until you reach your desired taste. As soon as the puffs are done baking, remove them from pan to wire rack. Immediately cut a slit in each puff to allow steam to escape; cool. Split puffs and set tops aside; remove soft dough from inside with a fork and discard. Fill each puff with the chocolate mousse and place the tops back on. Dust all the cream puffs with powdered sugar and refrigerate for a few hours before serving. You can serve these with ice cream, fruit, or both.

Enjoy!

Jessica the Baker

Amandine!

100th Blog Post!!!!

I saved the best dessert for my 100th blog post! I made these at the beginning of this year, and here they find their way on my blog at the end of the year.

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This is by far the hardest most delicious dessert I’ve ever made! Forget chocolate chip cookies and brownies, these make you feel like you’re a French chef πŸ˜‰

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Amandine is a Romanian dessert, a delicacy that is enjoyed as one of the nations’ top desserts. I grew up eating these as a little girl, but never dreamed of making them myself, let alone have them turn out right!

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The cake is chocolate and it is soaked in a rum essence flavored coffee syrup, and layered with a chocolate cream

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Then each piece has chocolate ganache poured on top. Clearly, to die for!

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So you could say that this is kind of like a mocha cake

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Why is this so hard you ask?

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Well, in a way it’s not that hard, but it takes a while make

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You have to get the syrup just right, and soak the cake with just the right amount of it or else it won’t taste like Amandine

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Then there’s the chocolate cream that has to have the right amount of rum essence in it

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And of course, you have to make these look beautiful!Β  πŸ™‚

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Who wouldn’t want to have a tray full of these delicious goodies?

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They’re so pretty, people won’t believe they’re homemade

IMG_5117Once people get a bite out of one of these yummy things, they’ll love you forever! πŸ™‚ Trust me, these are gone in a matter of minutes, especially if they’re served at a big family gathering (speaking from experience here πŸ™‚ )

So if you want the recipe you know who to contact… πŸ˜‰

Jessica the Baker