Salted Caramel Apple Pie Bars

The time has come when mangoes and peaches have made their final descent and hot sweaty days of slaving in the kitchen are officially a distant memory.

Salted Caramel Apple Pie Bars

 I may have found it hard saying goodbye to my summer desserts but I am loving fall and everything it has bought with it.

The cool crisp air. The warm brown orange hues. The piles of beautiful autumn leaves on the pavement.  The early sunsets. Halloween!

Pumpkin muffins. Warm tea. And apples. Lots and lots of beautiful apples and with it an endless list of things to make.

Shortbread crust. Cinnamon apples. Crumb topping. Salted caramel.  Apple pie bars...The perfect fall dessert!

 

Shortbread crust. Cinnamon apples. Crumb topping. Salted caramel. Apple pie bars...The perfect fall dessert!

I can’t think of a better way to welcome fall with open arms than with these warm cinnamon-ny apple pie bars.

Shortbread crust. Cinnamon apples. Crumb topping. Salted caramel.

The perfect fall dessert!

 

Shortbread crust. Cinnamon apples. Crumb topping. Salted caramel. Apple pie bars...The perfect fall dessert!

These bars struck me in the middle of a caramel cinnamon autumnal daydream.

I was craving apple pie but had neither the patience nor an audience to feed an entire pie. This recipe from Sally’s Baking Addiction proved to be a Godsend!

A quick version of the classic apple pie without all the hassle.

These apple pie bars taste even better than the original and they’re much easier to make.

Shortbread crust. Cinnamon apples. Crumb topping. Salted caramel.  Apple pie bars...The perfect fall dessert!

They richness from the shortbread crust, the sweetness of the apples, the nuttiness from the crumble and the saltiness of the caramel together create magic in your mouth.

 

Shortbread crust. Cinnamon apples. Crumb topping. Salted caramel. Apple pie bars...The perfect fall dessert!

These nutty apple pie bars consist of 4 delicious components:

  1. The shortbread crust is flaky and buttery and takes literally seconds to put together

  2. The apples are warm and gooey and they make your entire house smell of cinnamon a smell so deliriously good, it makes me want to bottle it up and wear it as perfume.

  3. The crumble is made up of oats, brown sugar, walnuts and more cinnamon. It has to be my favorite part of these bars. This crumble topping has infact been featured on the blog before. Remember this beautiful peach pie from last summer? Yup that’s the same crumble on top. The same bits of crumbly buttery deliciousness.

  4. The salted caramel to balance the richness and sweetness. You can skip it out completely but I mean why would you? Its salted caramel!! Edible molten gold! *swoooon*

You may think that all these layers and components would take a lot of time to put together but trust me when I tell you, this recipe is super quick. There’s no chilling or blind baking involved. It takes no more than 20 minutes to put the whole dish together and bang it into the oven.

 

Shortbread crust. Cinnamon apples. Crumb topping. Salted caramel. Apple pie bars...The perfect fall dessert!

A note about the original recipe:

Sally‘s version calls for 115g of butter and ¼ cup of sugar for the crust. I found the crust too greasy and sweet the first time I made this recipe and so I used less butter and also reduced the sugar the second time around. This ratio works out perfectly.

Shortbread crust. Cinnamon apples. Crumb topping. Salted caramel. Apple pie bars...The perfect fall dessert!

 

Have it with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream on top and I guarantee they’ll become one of your favorite fall treats as soon as you take the first bite!

Shortbread crust. Cinnamon apples. Crumb topping. Salted caramel. Apple pie bars...The perfect fall dessert!

Shortbread crust. Cinnamon apples. Crumb topping. Salted caramel. Apple pie bars...The perfect fall dessert!

See you soon with some spooky treats. 😉

 

 

Salted Caramel Apple Pie Bars

 

Ingredients:
Shortbread Crust
90g (6 Tablespoons) butter, melted
3 Tablespoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup all-purpose flour
Apple Filling
2 large apples, peeled and thinly sliced (1/4 inch thick, makes 3-4 cups)
2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 
Crumble
1/2 cup quick cooking or old-fashioned oats
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup walnuts, chopped *optional
60g butter, cold and cubed
Salted Caramel
I use this recipe.
 
Directions:
Preheat oven to 180 degrees C. Grease and line an 8-inch square baking pan with aluminum foil or parchment paper, leaving enough overhang on all sides. Set aside.
For the crust: In a bowl, mix together the melted butter, sugar, vanilla, and salt. Add in the flour and stir until everything is well combined. Press the mixture evenly into the prepared baking pan. Bake for 25 minutes while you prepare the rest of the components.
For the apple filling: Combine everything in a large bowl, and mix until all of the apples are evenly coated. Set aside.
For the crumble: In a bowl, mix together the oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, walnuts, and flour. Cut in the chilled butter using two forks or your hands until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Set aside.
Assembling: Remove the crust from the oven. Evenly and tightly layer the apples on top of the warm crust. Press them down to make them fit. Sprinkle with the crumble topping and bake for 30–35 minutes or until the crumble is golden brown. Meanwhile prepare the salted caramel using this recipe.
Remove the pan from the oven and allow to cool for at least 20-30 minutes at room temperature before slicing. Lift the foil or parchment out of the pan using the overhang on the sides and cut into bars. I cut them into 8 large bars for the pictures but usually cut them into bite size pieces since they are quite rich. Once cut, salted caramel sauce. Top with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and enjoy.
These apple pie bars are best served warm but they taste amazing cold too. Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator.
Recipe adapted from: Sally’s Baking Addiction

 

Shortbread crust. Cinnamon apples. Crumb topping. Salted caramel. Apple pie bars...The perfect fall dessert!

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Peach Crumble Pie

Pie makes everything better.

That’s what I snapped last week when I was baking this peach pie. The therapeutic value of making a pie really is just bazoom!

Peach Crumble Pie. A flaky crust filled with juicy peaches and topped with a walnut cinnamon crumble. It’s sweet. It’s juicy. It’s delicious.

Last week wasn’t a particularly good week (refer to last post).

What kept me from going over the edge was baking. And cooking. All day long. I would start my day with pancakes, moving onto pasta, naans, pizza, and ending with iced tea.

But nothing could beat the making of this pie. It was so SO relaxing and stress relieving.  Even if it was just for a few minutes, I stopped worrying about everything else and just enjoyed the feel of the cold butter in my hands, and the wonderful aroma of the juicy peaches and the cinnamon.

Thank you Sally for this wonderful recipe!

I can’t believe I’ve gone this long without making an actual pie (these tiny things don’t count).

 

Peach Crumble Pie. A flaky crust filled with juicy peaches and topped with a walnut cinnamon crumble. It’s sweet. It’s juicy. It’s delicious.

 

This pie involves a flaky crust filled with juicy peaches and topped with a walnut cinnamon crumble.

It’s sweet. It’s juicy. It’s delicious.

If that doesn’t scream summer to you, I don’t know what will.

 

Peach Crumble Pie. A flaky crust filled with juicy peaches and topped with a walnut cinnamon crumble. It’s sweet. It’s juicy. It’s delicious.

I’ve used the same pie crust I used for the Apple Hand Pies. It’s buttery, flaky, and everything a good crust should be.

*As mentioned, the vegetable shortening in the recipe is Crisco and it’s easily available in every big supermarket.

 

A few pointers before we head straight to the recipe:

  • Use very very cold butter and shortening. Cold fat when melts in the oven causes the pastry to puff up creating little air pockets which makes the end result so tender and flaky.

  • Be gentle with the pie crust. Unlike pizza dough, it doesn’t require kneading. Just mix till it comes together.

  • Use fresh peaches that aren’t too ripe nor too hard.

  • Walnuts are optional in the crumble but highly recommended.

  • Ice cream is NOT optional >> You must serve this pie with vanilla ice cream.

A slice of fresh homemade peach pie and a nice big scoop of vanilla ice cream, it might just be a slice of heaven!

Peach Crumble Pie. A flaky crust filled with juicy peaches and topped with a walnut cinnamon crumble. It’s sweet. It’s juicy. It’s delicious.

Peach Crumble Pie. A flaky crust filled with juicy peaches and topped with a walnut cinnamon crumble. It’s sweet. It’s juicy. It’s delicious.

And there you go. Peach Crumble Pie.

Peach Crumble Pie. A flaky crust filled with juicy peaches and topped with a walnut cinnamon crumble. It’s sweet. It’s juicy. It’s delicious.

I did it. I made a pie from scratch!

Peach Crumble Pie

Yields: 1 pie
Ingredients:
FOR THE PIE CRUST
1 and ¼ cups all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon salt
3 Tablespoon (45g) unsalted butter, chilled and cubed
¼ cup + 2 Tablespoon vegetable shortening, chilled
¼ cup ice water
FOR THE FILLING
6-8 medium sized peaches, cut into chunks
½ cup packed brown sugar
½ cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoon lemon juice
¼ teaspoon cinnamon powder
FOR THE CRUMBLE:
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon powder
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 (75g) cup unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
1/2 cup chopped walnuts, lightly roasted *optional
Directions:
For the Pie Crust
In a large bowl, mix together the flour and salt. Add the butter and shortening. Using two forks, or with the help of your fingertips, cut the butter and shortening into the flour until it resembles bread crumbs, some bigger bits of butter are perfectly fine.
Drizzle in the icy cold water little by little, stirring with a wooden spoon. When the dough begins to form large clumps, do not add more water.
Flour a work surface and transfer dough on it. Using floured hands, fold dough into itself till it comes together, and the flour is fully incorporated into the fats. Form a ball. Flatten it and wrap tightly in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 2 to 3 hours
For the Filling
Peel the peaches and chop them into 2 inch chunks.
In a large bowl, combine together the peach chunks, brown sugar, flour, lemon juice, and cinnamon until thoroughly combined. Set aside.
Preheat oven to 200 degrees C.
For the Crumble
In a bowl, combine the brown sugar, cinnamon, and flour. Stir in the butter and chopped walnuts. Mixture will be thick. Set aside.
Assembling
On a floured work surface, roll out one of the chilled dough until you have a circle 12 inches in diameter. Carefully place the dough onto a greased 9×2 inch pie dish. Tuck it in with your fingers, making sure it is smooth. Cut off any excess dough from the edges. Prick the base using a fork.
Spoon the peach filling onto the crust, leaving any liquid behind in the bowl.  Sprinkle over the peaches the prepared crumble topping.
Bake for 40-60 minutes, depending on your oven, till golden brown and bubbly.
Allow the pie to cool for 3 full hours at room temperature before serving. This time allows the filling to thicken up and the sugars and juices to settle.
Serve with vanilla ice cream. Cover pie leftovers tightly and store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
Notes:
I use and recommend Crisco as the vegetable shortening. It is easily available in all large superstores.
Cover pie leftovers tightly and store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
Baked pie can be frozen for upto 3 months.
Recipe source: Sally’s baking addiction

Peach Crumble Pie. A flaky crust filled with juicy peaches and topped with a walnut cinnamon crumble. It’s sweet. It’s juicy. It’s delicious.

Creamiest Chocolate Pudding

“Others have seen what is and asked why. I have seen what could be and asked why not.”

–Pablo Picasso

Have you ever wanted something so bad you think you’d die if you don’t have it? And when you think you’ve finally gotten it, its snatched away from you?

If yes, then this chocolate pudding is especially for you.

Eat it warm, eat it cold; it provides comfort like no other.

 

Eat it warm, eat it cold; chocolate pudding provides comfort like no other.

Chocolate pudding is just one of those things that never fails to bring a smile on your face or warmth to your toes.

Its rich, its creamy, and it is so so SO easy to make even my fogged up brain can whip it up. Just needs a little bit of patience and whole lot of whisking!

Eat it warm, eat it cold; chocolate pudding provides comfort like no other.

To start, combine sugar, cocoa, salt and cornflour.

Eat it warm, eat it cold; chocolate pudding provides comfort like no other.

Whisk in 2/3 cup milk and an egg.

Eat it warm, eat it cold; chocolate pudding provides comfort like no other.

Heat the rest of the milk to a scalding temperature.

Eat it warm, eat it cold; chocolate pudding provides comfort like no other.

Then whisk in the egg cocoa mixture and cook over high heat until the pudding thickens into a luscious, silky consistency.

Eat it warm, eat it cold; chocolate pudding provides comfort like no other.

Then remove the pudding from the heat and stir in vanilla extract.

Eat it warm, eat it cold; chocolate pudding provides comfort like no other.

Pour the chocolate pudding into a big bowl to chill. Press plastic wrap directly onto the surface of the pudding, so a skin doesn’t form.

Eat it warm, eat it cold; chocolate pudding provides comfort like no other.

Then, chill the pudding for an hour or two in the refrigerator or eat it warm. Enjoy!

Chocolate Pudding

Prep Time: 15 minutes                                                                        Yields: 4 servings
Cook Time: 12 to 15 minutes
Ingredients:
·         1/2 cup sugar
·         1/3 cup cocoa powder
·         1/4 cup cornflour (cornstartch)
·         1/4 tsp salt
·         2 2/3 cups  milk
·         1 large egg
·         1 tsp vanilla extract
Directions:
In a medium bowl, whisk together the sugar, cocoa, cornflour, and salt. In another bowl, mix together the egg and 2/3 cup of milk. Gradually add milk mixture over the cocoa mixture and whisk to dissolve well. Set aside.
In a sauce pan bring the rest of the milk (2 cups) to a boil.
Remove from heat and gradually add the egg mixture over the hot milk whisking the whole time. Place it back over the heat and cook whisking constantly until the mixture thickens, about 3 minutes on medium heat.
Remove the pudding from the heat and stir in vanilla extract.
Pour the pudding into 4 individual or one big bowl and press plastic wrap directly on the surface of the pudding so a skin doesn’t form. Refrigerate for an hour or two until chilled or serve warm drizzled with chocolate syrup.
Notes:
Good quality cocoa powder is paramount to this recipe otherwise you’ll end with a Milo like tasting bland pudding. For intense chocolate flavor, add in a couple tablespoons of melted dark chocolate.
Recipe source: Home Cooking Adventure

Eat it warm, eat it cold; this Chocolate Pudding provides comfort like no other.

Mini Pizza Pies

The recipe I am sharing today is a Family FAVORITE.

All families have certain dishes they love to cook and eat. Mine goes gaga for these mini pizza pockets! Put 12 dozen in front of them and they’ll still demand more.

I am sure you will face the same situation with your siblings, cousins, random guests when you try these magical pockets of dough and cheese and everything nice. (unless they are gluten intolerant. Oops)

Mini Pizza Pies. The perfect snack idea!

 

This recipe is especially handy because it makes A LOT of mini pizzas pies (3 dozen to be exact). So they are the perfect, fuss-free party food. Easy to make, fun to eat.

Mini Pizza Pies. The perfect snack idea!

The chicken mixture is a scaled down version of the filling in the Chicken Bread I posted eons ago. A very simple, creamy chicken filling made with loads of butter, milk, and cheese. Divine. (calories, what calories?)

Mini Pizza Pies. The perfect snack idea!

 

Also, these pies feature:

  • fresh bell pepper

  • sweet corn

  • tomato

You can customize the vegs according to your own taste. Leave out the corn if it makes you gag. Add mushrooms instead, or even olives would be lovely.

Mini Pizza Pies. The perfect snack idea!

The recipe is super fun to make. Get your kids or siblings involved and make a kitchen party out of it like we did!

Mini Pizza Pies. The perfect snack idea!

 

I rolled out the dough, got my sisters to cut it out in circles, place them in the cupcake tray, and then fill em up.

First the pizza sauce or chili garlic sauce, then comes the chicken filling, then the vegetables, all topped with shredded mozzarella. Bake till the dough is golden brown and the cheese is bubbly on top.

Dip into a bowl of this sweet and sour imli chutney and I dare you to stop at one.

Mini Pizza Pies. The perfect snack idea!

 

If making for a party, you can prepare them beforehand, cover the cupcake tray with foil, and keep refrigerated till you’re ready to bake them. They take literally less than 20 minutes to cook. They also freeze well. Line the unbaked versions in a airtight container or a ziplock bag and freeze for upto 3 months. The day you need to use them, leave to thaw till the oven gets preheated and then bake as you would normally.

Mini Pizza Pies. The perfect snack idea!

You’ll be the Queen/King of the household after you make these… Or their pizza pie slave forever.

Mini Pizza Pies. The perfect snack idea!

 

Try the recipe and let me know how they turn out by sharing a picture on Instagram with this hashtag #spatulainmypocket!

Happy baking!

Mini Pizza Pies

Yields: around 3 dozen
Ingredients:
Homemade pizza dough (for the recipe click HERE)
CHICKEN FILLING
1 Tablespoon butter
4 Tablespoons onion, finely chopped
1 chicken breast, boiled and shredded
1 Tablespoons flour, heaped
½ teaspoon salt, leveled
½ teaspoon black pepper
½ teaspoon mustard powder (optional)
¼  cup whole milk
1 teaspoon dry oregano
2 Tablespoons ketchup
2 green chilies, finely chopped
2 Tablespoons fresh coriander leaves, finely chopped
Storebought pizza sauce
TOPPINGS
Tomato, chopped
Sweet corn
Green Bell Pepper, chopped
Mozzarella cheese, shredded
Directions:
Prepare the dough and allow it to rise according to the instructions mentioned HERE.
For the filling: In a pan melt the butter and add the onion. Fry till the onions become soft and transparent. Add the chicken, flour, salt, black pepper, and mustard powder. Mix till combined. Take the pan off the heat and add the milk. Turn on the heat again, at low to medium flame, and stir constantly with the help of a wooden spoon. Add the oregano leaves, ketchup, green chilies, and coriander. Allow to cool completely.
Preheat oven to 200 degrees C and grease a cupcake tray lightly with cooking oil.
On a floured counter top, roll out half the dough in a rectangle. Cut out circles using a round cookie cutter.
Fix each round of dough in the cupcake tray. Add a dollop of pizza sauce in each, followed by a spoonful of the chicken filling, the vegetables. Top with cheese.
Bake for 15-20 minutes till its golden brown.
Repeat till all the dough and filling is used up.
Notes:
·         Best served fresh out of the oven. Can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Warm in the microwave before serving.
·         You might end up with leftover dough. You can freeze it or use it to make pizza pockets filling them up with sausages and cheese.

Mini Pizza Pies. The perfect snack idea!

Apple Hand Pies

*This post was intended for the week after exams. But then Karachi happened…

Mini apple pies. The flaky buttery crust filled with a cinnamon scented apple filling should definitely be on your to-bake list this winter!

The air may not be as crisp and the leaves may not be as brown as the rest of the world, but that does not mean that us Pakistanis don’t love fall. And now that winter is almost here, it’s the perfect time to put to use all those pie recipes safely hidden away in your recipe box. What could be better than gooey flaky just-out-of-the-oven apple pies on these cold dreary days.

The flaky buttery crust filled with a cinnamon scented apple filling should definitely be on your to-bake list this winter!

 

I whipped these up in fifteen minutes flat after coming home from a relax- after-Exam-From-Hell hike in the Margalla Hills. The weather was beautiful and my legs were dead.

off to the hills!water-3

And so these mini apple pies were the perfect pick-me-up, although I do prefer chocolate but these were next to best.

Mini apple pies. The flaky buttery crust filled with a cinnamon scented apple filling should definitely be on your to-bake list this winter!

These beautiful little treats are the perfect thing to make this fall cum winter. To impress your guests with at your next tea party. And with Christmas just around the corner, they can make for a perfect gift for your friends and family, just fill em in a cute lil box, tie a ribbon around it and voila….DIY Christmas gifts in a jiffy. Who wouldn’t love a box of lil apple pies?

Mini apple pies. The flaky buttery crust filled with a cinnamon scented apple filling should definitely be on your to-bake list this winter!

Don’t let the pie crust scare you. I will do a detailed post on it later. It’s very easy. Just follow all the steps and you’ll get perfect results every single time. This was my first try at pie crust and it turned out beyond my expectations.

Mini apple pies. The flaky buttery crust filled with a cinnamon scented apple filling should definitely be on your to-bake list this winter!

The flaky buttery crust filled with a cinnamon scented apple filling should definitely be on your to-bake list this winter!

>>Oh and in case you guys missed my post on Instagram, Spatula in My Pocket is now on Snapchat! {Add me at: noora559} I’m trying to make a habit of sharing more and on a regular basis but, boy, cooking and taking pictures at the same time is hard  o.o<<

Apple Hand Pies

Prep Time: 20 minutes plus chilling time                                               Yields: 8-10 hand pies
Cook Time: 15 to 20 minutes
Ingredients:
FOR THE CRUST
1 and ¼ cups all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon salt
3 Tablespoon (45g) unsalted butter, chilled and cubed
¼ cup + 2 Tablespoon vegetable shortening, chilled
¼ cup ice water
FOR THE FILLING
2 cups small diced and peeled apples
2 teaspoons lemon juice
½ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ cup sugar
2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
FOR TOPPING
1 egg
1 teaspoon water
Granulated sugar, optional
Directions:
For the Crust
In a large bowl, mix together the flour and salt. Add the butter and shortening. Using a pastry cutter, or two forks, or with the help of our fingertips, cut the butter and shortening into the flour until it resembles coarse meal (pea-sized bits of butter are totally fine)
Drizzle in the icy cold water little by little, stirring with a wooden spoon in between. When the dough begins to form large clumps, do not add more water.
Flour a work surface and transfer dough on it. Using floured hands, fold dough into itself till it comes together, and the flour is fully incorporated into the fats. Form a ball. Flatten it and wrap tightly in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 2 to 3 hours
For the Filling
In a small bowl, combine all the filling ingredients until thoroughly mixed. Set aside.
Assemble the Pies
Preheat oven to 180 degrees.
Remove chilled dough from the refrigerator and allow it to come to room temperature before rolling, for about 15 minutes. Then, place the dough on a lightly floured work surface, roll into a square about 1/8 inch thick and 14×14 inch sides.
Using a cookie cutter or a cup, cut out as many circles as possible. Reroll dough as needed.
Place six of the circles on a parchment paper-lined cookie sheet. Spoon apple filling in the center, leaving space around the border. Place second dough circle on top of each filled circle. Use a fork to crimp the edges together to seal each pie.
In a small bowl, beat together the egg and water.
Brush the top of each pie with the prepared egg wash. Using a sharp knife, cut two to three vents on the top of each pie. Sprinkle with granulated sugar.
Bake for about 15 to 20 minutes, or until golden brown.
Let pies rest for about 10 minutes before serving.
Notes
I use and recommend Crisco as the vegetable shortening. It is easily available in all large superstores.
Cubed apples should be very very tiny so as to make sure they cook inside the oven.
The sugar in the filling can be replaced with brown sugar for a more caramel-like flavor.

 

 

Sticky Date Pudding

“Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.”

-Albert Camus

Fall is my fav!

Of foggy breaths, funky socks and marshmallows in hot drinks… autumn is love because it announces the coming of winter. And what better way to celebrate this awesome mausum than with something composed of rich caramely goodness, dates and warm toffee.

Sticky Toffee Pudding..rich, buttery, and oh so decadent.

After Hajj 2015 ( I hope all your loved ones are home safe by the grace of Allah), many of you will have loads of beautiful fresh dates. So this seemed like the perfect time to share the recipe of a sticky date pudding with you. I bet most of you don’t eat more than a few dates anyway (unless cajoled by your mums). Instead of popping them dates straight in your mouth, why not turn them into something even more delicious (and edible).

Sticky Toffee Pudding..rich, buttery, and oh so decadent.

This dessert is a British classic that has become a favorite worldwide. Made with dates, butter and lots of caramel, it has the power to turn any chocolate lover around. If my sister (a committed chocoholic) can claim this to be one of her favorite dessert, so can you!

 Sticky Toffee Pudding..rich, buttery, and oh so decadent.

Maybe pudding is a little (ok, a lot) misleading for the desi in us. But the British call all their desserts puddings (don’t ask me why), and this dish is thoroughly British. Its a date-studded cake/pudding that is drowned in a sea of warm butterscotch sauce after baking.

Sticky Toffee Pudding..rich, buttery, and oh so decadent.

Here I’ll like to admit to two horrendous misconceptions I had before making this cake/pudding.

1) I was never enamored with the idea of baking dates. The thought of mushy, khajoor-y cake made me ick and think of strawberry and cream.

2) The second thought that drove me insane was of the sweetness upon sweetness. Sugary sweet dates with a thick caramel sauce. Who will willingly induce a sugar coma?

But, I was wrong and you will be too when you make this cake/pudding.

Sticky Toffee Pudding..rich, buttery, and oh so decadent.

Everything in it is perfectly balanced. The flavor isn’t over-poweringly date-like. In fact you will hardly be able to tell there are dates in it. It’s the toffee sauce that takes all the glory.

The toffee sauce is unbelievably addicting. And not just with this date pudding, but with anything. On ice-creams, drizzled on top of pies, breads, or just on a spoon straight into your mouth (unless you are diabetic). And it’s super easy to make too. Just pop everything (the butter, brown sugar and cream) in a saucepan. Bring to a gentle boil. And you’re done. It’s thick and pourable, and settles on top of the moist date sponge like a glaze, complimenting it perfectly.

The whole shebang is rich, buttery, and oh so decadent.

Bake it in the form of one cake..

Sticky Toffee Pudding..rich, buttery, and oh so decadent.

Or several mini cakes…

Sticky Toffee Pudding..rich, buttery, and oh so decadent.

Either way, it’s a must for the chilly season to come!

Sticky Toffee Pudding

Serves 8

Ingredients:

Pudding
¼ cup (52g) butter, at room temperature
1 ½ cup all-purpose flour, sifted
1 ½ cup (6 ounces) chopped pitted dates
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 ¼ cup water
Sauce
1 ¼ cup brown sugar, packed
½ cup heavy cream
¼ cup (52g) butter
½ teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

For the pudding:
Preheat oven to 180 degrees C.
Butter a muffin tray or an 8×8 baking dish. Set aside.
Bring dates and the water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Remove from heat; stir in baking soda (mixture will become foamy). Set aside, and let it cool to room temperature.
In a bowl, whisk together the flour and baking powder.
In another bowl, with the help of an electric mixer, beat together the softened butter, sugar, and vanilla. Mixture will be grainy.
Add 1 egg; beat to blend. Add half of flour mixture and half of date mixture; beat to blend. Repeat with remaining 1 egg, flour mixture, and date mixture.
Pour batter into prepared pan.
Bake for 40-45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
Let cool slightly in the pan, then invert onto a wire rack.
For the sauce:
In a small saucepan, bring the brown sugar, cream, and butter to a boil over medium heat. Continue to boil, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes. Remove from heat, and stir in vanilla extract.
Cut warm cake into slices. Pour prepared toffee sauce on top. Serve with a dollop of whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
Notes:
*Can also be made in a Bundt pan or a muffin tray.
**Warm leftovers in the microwave before serving. Leftovers, even the sauce, can be stored in the refrigerator for over a week. 
Recipe source:  Bon Appétit
Sticky Toffee Pudding..rich, buttery, and oh so decadent.

Poke holes in the cake to drench it completely in the toffee sauce.

Sticky Toffee Pudding..rich, buttery, and oh so decadent.

S’MORES BROWNIE PIE

Campfire. Marshmallows. Graham Crackers. Chocolate -> S’mores. Something I’m sure, like me, you’ve grown up reading about in story books. I’ve always wanted to be one of the kids sitting around a bonfire, roasting marshmallows and sharing spooky stories. Remember Sweet Valley?

S'mores Brownie Pie. A biscuit crust, a brownie filling, and topped with gooey roasted marshmallows=YUM  Recipe at: https://spatulainmypocket.com/2015/08/17/smores-brownie-pie/

And so, on a random shopping trip with my mom, the sight of the big bags of jet puff marshmallows had me enticed. And with no second thought, I threw one in our shopping trolley. And that bag of marshmallows has been there in our kitchen closet for months, lain forgotten till just now.

 S'more brownie pie! Not just any pie...a biscuit crust, a brownie filling, and topped with gooey roasted marshmallows.

Summer arrived, and so popped up hordes of s’mores stuff everywhere all over the internet. I had to try them, I had to see what all the brouhaha was about. And what better way to try it than in the traditional pie form.

S'more brownie pie! Not just any pie...a biscuit crust, a brownie filling, and topped with gooey roasted marshmallows.

Who doesn’t love a slice of good ole pie?

S'more brownie pie! Not just any pie...a biscuit crust, a brownie filling, and topped with gooey roasted marshmallows.

 

This isn’t just any pie. Oh no no no. For starters it has a biscuit crust instead of the short cut pastry that pies usually have. The filling is a brownie mix…yum! And on top….gooey roasted marshmallows.

 

 S'more brownie pie! Not just any pie...a biscuit crust, a brownie filling, and topped with gooey roasted marshmallows.

The biscuit crumb base is pretty simple. Use any crackers you have on hand. I used digestive biscuits, the standard kind you get in every store.  Crush em up with some melted butter, press it down on your pie dish, bake it for 8 to 10 mins, and there you go, first step done.

S'more brownie pie! Not just any pie...a biscuit crust, a brownie filling, and topped with gooey roasted marshmallows.

The brownie filling is your standard brownie mix. Its thick, dark and fudgy…the perfect combination with the sweet marshmallowey top.

S'more brownie pie! Not just any pie...a biscuit crust, a brownie filling, and topped with gooey roasted marshmallows.

This pie is best served warm. Eating it cold is okay too but know that marshmallows will harden up and will become chewy. So, warm up the pie before serving. Heat it enough so that the marshmallows are gloopy again.

S'more brownie pie! Not just any pie...a biscuit crust, a brownie filling, and topped with gooey roasted marshmallows.

 

Enjoy 🙂

S’mores Brownie Pie

Serves: 8-10
Ingredients:
CRUST
1.5 cups digestive biscuit crumbs*
6 Tablespoons (90g) melted butter
1/3 cup (65g) granulated sugar
BROWNIES
10 Tablespoons (150g) butter
1 and 1/4 cups (250g) granulated sugar
3/4 cup (74g) cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs, cold
1/2 cup (62g) all-purpose flour
25 large marshmallows
Directions:
Preheat oven to 160 degrees C.
Crust: Mix together the biscuit crumbs, melted butter and sugar. Press into an ungreased 8-inch or 9-inch pie dish. Set aside.
Brownies: Melt the butter, sugar, and cocoa in a large bowl in the microwave. Melt in 30 second increments and stir after each time until the butter is completely melted. The mixture will look gritty. Let cool slightly. Stir in the vanilla extract. Add the eggs one at a time. The mix will be thick and shiny. Fold in the flour. Pour over the prepared crust.
Bake for 25-30 minutes till the brownie is set. Remove from the oven and top with marshmallows. Return to the oven and continue to bake for an additional 3 minutes to melt the marshmallows and get a golden brown tinge on the top. Remove from the oven and allow to cool to room temperature before slicing.
Best served warm. Store at room temperature. Heat in the microwave before serving again.
Notes:
*pulverize the biscuits in a grinder or a food processor till they turn into fine crumbs.
Recipe source: Sally’s Baking Addiction

S'more brownie pie! Not just any pie...a biscuit crust, a brownie filling, and topped with gooey roasted marshmallows.