Warming up for the Season October 25 2018

Hey all! What the heck happened to our weather?!? When Autumn officially hit, Mama Nature turned down the temps, YIKES!

But with the cool weather, the creativity and need to cook begins to bubble over! By that, I mean exploring flavors that bring the season into our homes. Aromas of roasting meats, veggies and of course warm gooey fruit pies fresh from the oven! I mean the aroma, flavor and love that pours out of our homes this time of year. Scents of ginger, cinnamon and nutmeg that makes us all warm and fuzzy and long for home.

This need has lead me to use our abundant local fruit harvest in making desserts using Durango Olive Oil Co flavored balsamic vinegars to bring the essence of the fruit to the palate. Also, I am not a baker, but I have given it my best, with good results! I made the pie as easy as possible, because baking is really a lab experiment that you need to follow exactly. The only thing I had changed in a basic pie recipe was to swap out the amount of sugar and replace it with a balsamic that complemented the fruit.

I had over the years tried several recipes of apple pie with varying degrees of success. So, after scouring some of the better recipes, I found a good guideline for this venture as most of the recipes were about the same with minor differences. Of course, every other recipe, I had to improvise and after two successes here is my version of a deep-dish apple pie that came from epicurus.com (https://www.epicurus.com/food/recipes/deep-dish-apple-cobbler/5855). I like this one as it was easy to use and less prep and bake time were needed. Plus, because the dessert is in a deep dish, not bottom crust needed!

As I had access to plenty of apples, I had to think of the flavors that would bring out the essence of the fruit without being over powering. Of course, certain flavors jumped to mind like traditional (safe flavor) to chili or spicy mango (wilder). I decide to play it safe and used Durango Olive Oil Co vanilla and caramel balsamics in the following recipe.

Deep Dish Caramel Apple Pie

Filling:

5 - large apples, ¼ inch sliced and cored

½ c. cane sugar

3 tbsp. vanilla balsamic vinegar

3 tbsp. caramel balsamic vinegar

1 tsp. cinnamon

¼ tsp. nutmeg and all spice

1 tbsp. flour

2 tbsp. melted butter

Topping:

1c. cane sugar

2 lg eggs

1 tbsp. Vanilla balsamic

1 tbsp. Caramel balsamic

1 c. flour

1 tsp. baking powder

½ tsp cinnamon

¼ tsp. nutmeg

½ tsp. pink salt

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Cut and core apples into ¼ inch slices and place into medium size bowl. Mix sugar, balsamics and spices into bowl and mix well to coat all the apples. Add flour and butter and mix well before putting into a lightly greased deep sided pan.

Set aside.

In another bowl, beat eggs and sugar until well blended. Add balsamic vinegars. Add flour, baking powder and spices into the mix and beat until creamy smooth. This mix will be gooey but spread mix over the apples as well as possible.

Bake until golden brown about 40 minutes. Serve warm with a scoop of your favorite ice cream and enjoy!