Brown Sugar Apple Pie

Need I say more?  Just add the recipe, right?  That’s what I thought.  But I will tell you first that my mom always made the BEST apple pie.  She still does, and she wisely credits my Granny with the recipe.  Here it is.

Brown Sugar Apple Pie

Filling (for two pies):

3/4 C packed brown sugar

1/4 C sugar

1 1/2 t cinnamon

1/3 c flour

dash salt

8 C apples, thinly sliced

Combine and fill prepared crust.  I use this “no fail pie crust” recipe sometimes, but I must be the exception to the rule, because I always fail at perfectly rolled pastry.  Mine is too sticky or too crumbly.  Just look past the bubbly, brown sugary goodness in the photo and you can see my lumpy, pieced-together crust.  I mean, I really get bothered by the promise that “it rolls out like a dream.”  More like a nightmare, but I digress.  Let’s get back to the filling and topping recipes, which work just as well with a Pillsbury Ready Made Pie Crust.  Yeah that’s right.  I said it.

Before you bake, cover your pies with this topping (which, according to Granny’s recipe, is also for two pies, but I double the recipe below to get maximum crumbly, brown sugary coverage).

Topping:

1 1/4 C flour

3/4 C packed brown sugar

1 t cinnamon

1/2 stick butter, softened

Mix until crumbly and pour evenly on top of apple filling.  Bake your pies at 350 until apples are tender until poked with a fork, about 40 minutes.

 

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Chocolate Leaves

Did I mention I have three boys?  And a husband.  And a male cat.  And two hermit crabs and four frogs who have all been dubbed male by those who care.  Yes, around here it’s all boy, all the time.  No tea with petit fours, no pretty dresses.  You can cut the testosterone with a knife.  And while we’re cutting (watch this segue) just imagine the “manly” cakes I’ve made . . . Thomas, John Deere, Mario and Darth Vader, to name a few.

So it was my delight to make a birthday cake for my friend Kristin recently.  As tempting as it was to go with a full floral theme (and make use of my dusty Wilton instruction booklets), I decided to focus on fall.  It was a small celebration, so I used my Pyrex measuring cup to bake a small spice cake and topped it with white chocolate buttercream frosting:

1/2 C butter, softened

1 C white chocolate chips, melted over a double boiler

1 tsp vanilla

3 C powdered sugar

Then came the fun part!  I printed out a sheet of leaf line drawings.  Then I used melting chocolates in different color combinations and piped them onto wax paper over the leaf templates:

Using a toothpick, I spread and swirled the chocolate to the edges of the templates to create textured leaves:

After letting the chocolates harden in the refrigerator, I covered the cake with the delicious (and might I say girlie?) foliage:

 

Kristin loved it (and so did the boys)!