Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Caramel Apple Charlottes: A recipe in progress

When your a child there are certain memories you put in your mind and save them forever. Hoping that when your older you might be able to pull them out and use them for a rainy day.
The last week or so the air has been getting crisp and the leaves have all turned their beautiful colours of reds, oranges and golds. Fall is here.
When the weather in Ontario gets chilly and people start to feel the looming of winter upon them, this is the time to pull those warm memories from your mind and put them to good use. So that is exactly what I did.
When I was growing up my parents would go on exotic vacations a couple times a year. This meant that my sister and I would take the 30 minute drive out to the country and stay with my Nan and Bamp. Most kids in their early years of adolescence would despise this I'm sure. But when you had the grandparents I had this was like freedom only kids dreamt about.

Let me give you an example:

When dinner was finished and you thought that most elderly people would round themselves out and watch reruns of "Corrie Street" or the evening news, my grandfather would break out the cards. First order of business, "Cath, where are the quarters?", my Bamp would yell.
Yep you guessed it, this wasn't "Snap" or "Go Fish", this was Blackjack...gambling Blackjack to be precise.
My Nan would go to her quarter jar, which she kept to throw her quarters into so that each of her ( I can't remember how many we all are, but there are alot) grandkids could have $50 every birthday and Christmas, and pour them out onto the table and divvy them up so we each ended up with about 8 or 10 a piece.

After about 4 or 5 hands of cards my Nan would get up from the table and "POOF" dessert would appear. There was always something different when we went to stay, but my favourite was her Apple Charlotte.
Warm vanilla sponge baked and underneath a soft layer of apples and cinnamon. If this wasn't enough custard would magically appear out of thin air, and dessert was served. We would all dig in with haste and relish in the moment of utter perfection. It was always "Silubrious" my Bamp would say,which was his word for delicious, whatever the dessert was. Then it was back to business, Blackjack style.

So this week's recipe is an homage to my Nan and Bamp. The two people I learned quintessential life skills from. Like when to say "stay" and when to say "hit me". Also, how to never be flustered in the kitchen. Though I haven't perfected the recipe from scratch, I'm working on it...until then you can all shudder at the cake mix I used. Don't knock it to you tried it, it still tasted "silubrious".

Caramel Apple Charlottes:

1 box of golden cake mix, prepared to instructions
3 Apples, peeled, cored, sliced thinly into 2 inch pieces
Caramel Sauce, I made my own but use whatever you like

Caramel Sauce:
1/2 c sugar
2 tbsp butter
1/4 cup heavy cream
pinch of salt

Bring sugar and about 1 tsp of water to a boil for about 5 minutes or until carmel in colour. Remove from heat and add butter, cream and salt. Place back on low heat and stir together until smooth.
*If caramel goes grainy on you, just heat back up and add more cream until smooth.*

Heat oven to 350.
Prepare a cupcake pan, do not flour.
Pour a teaspoon of caramel sauce into each hole.
Then lay about 4 - 5 slices of apple into the bottom.
Top each with about 2 Tbsp of cake mix, or about 3/4 full.
Bakefor 18 - 20 mintues, or when you push on the top the spring back.
Cool for 5 mintues and then flip onto cooling rack.

Makes 24 cupcakes


jessicajlee said...

I already did this!!!

shavedicesundays said...

OMG, I love that last photo. Likin' your blog!