Did you celebrate Valentine’s Day traditionally with chocolates, red roses, and/or a romantic candlelight dinner? Bill and I aren’t much for rituals, but we do enjoy treats and desserts on special occasions. My sister, Victoria, had given us some lovely ‘Hidden Rose’ apples for Christmas. I had saved the last 5 for a baking project.
Victoria sent us an apple crumble recipe to try, but I decided to improvise on the Cranberry Apple tart we enjoyed for our Christmas family dinner.
First make, the wine (or grape juice) sugar syrup to use as a dessert drizzle…
Wine Grape Juice Dessert Syrup Recipe
Sweet Dessert Wine or Grape Juice, 1 cup+2-3 Tablespoons
Organic Raw Turbinado Sugar, 2 cups
Put 1 cup+2-3 Tablespoons wine or grape juice in a small saucepan. Stir in sugar. Heat until the sugar dissolves, then continue cooking at a slow boil for 10 minutes to thicken. Let cool before serving.
Hidden Rose Apple Pie Recipe
Adjust an baking rack in the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
Thaw a good frozen pie dough or make one from scratch, using a tried-and-true recipe. (Our favorite quickie crust made with decent ingredients is sold by Trader Joe’s).
APPLE PIE INGREDIENTS
4 ‘Hidden Rose’ apples, washed and cored (leave skins on).
Dried cranberries & dried Blenheim apricots (cut into strips, 1/2 cup ea)
Sugar Syrup, 1 cup made with dessert wine or wine grape juice. (See recipe above)
Sea Salt, 1/8 tsp
Coconut Flakes, 1/2 cup
Organic Lemon for juice, if your apples aren’t tart
Whole Organic Milk to brush crust for a nice finishing glaze
Whipped Organic Coconut Cream or Organic Cream or Vanilla Yogurt or Ice Cream for garnish
Remove the dough from the refrigerator to soften for a few minutes. Roll out on a piece of parchment or waxed paper to about a 12-inch diameter. Transfer the dough to a pie pan. Fold the excess dough over on itself and crimp the edges attractively.
In a small saucepan, combine dried cranberries & Blenheim apricot strips in the wine/wine grape juice sugar syrup. Bring to a simmer over low heat and cook until the cranberries are plump, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool slightly.
While the dried fruit cooks, cut the apples into 1/2-inch thick slices. Put into a large bowl, add the cooked dried fruit and syrup, sprinkle with 1/8 tsp sea salt (or more to taste). Stir gently, but thoroughly, to mix. Taste an apple slice and adjust salt, syrup, lemon juice (if needed) to your preferred sweet-tart balance.
Pile the fruit mixture into fluted pie dough. Brush the pastry edges with whole milk. Add coconut flakes to mixing bowl. Drizzle with a bit more syrup, mix ’til moist and sprinkle over fruit filling.
Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the apples are tender and the crust is golden brown. Watch carefully as the syrup covered coconut flakes can burn easily.
Remove pie from the oven. Cool on a wire rack. Serve at room temperature with any of the following garnishes: whipped coconut cream, whipped organic heavy cream, ice cream or vanilla yogurt topped with a drizzle of Wine Grape Juice Syrup. ENJOY!
A special note: These lovely pink fleshed apples keep their color when baked, which make this dessert especially wonderful.