Monday, August 27, 2012

As American As Apple Pie Bars

Good Monday to you one and all.  Hope your weekend was enjoyable.  Here were are in the last few days of August already.  Where has the time gone?  Seems as though it was just the beginning of summer and we are now in the waning days.

This summer has been an amazing year for peaches and we have certainly enjoyed our share of wonderful desserts made with them.  When I was at the Farmer's Market last week, lo and behold, apples are starting to come in.  Big, beautiful Granny Smith and Golden Delicious apples, oh my.  I know that Granny Smith's are supposed to be better for baking, but our favorite is Golden Delicious.  Slightly tart, slightly sweet, and much better for eating if you just want to enjoy a nice juicy apple.

Needless to say, I had to buy a basket of these beautiful apples.  They were huge, so I shared them with our daughters because the grandsons love a good apple too.  The remaining apples were destined for a dessert that I have been making since 1990, when I purchased a little cook book published by Land O Lakes  - you know the butter right?  It's a collection of favorite cookie recipes and they are outstanding.   My favorite recipe in the book is for apple pie bars which may be better than any apple pie I have ever eaten.  Dan is not a fan of apple pie (I know, I know), but he really likes these.  He is a bit averse to cooked fruit (the texture) and these are not as thick as apple pie.  I think that is why he likes them, that and all the wonderful cinnamon flavor.  Yum, yum.

They do take a little more effort than some cookie bars because you make a crust like apple pie, but it is really worth the effort!  They are baked in a 15x10x1 inch jelly roll pan, so you have to roll the crust to fit the pan, but that is the most difficult thing about the recipe.  Here is what you will need.



1 egg yolk (reserve egg white)
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp salt
1 cup Land O Lakes butter, softened


1 cup crushed corn flake cereal
8 cups peeled, cored, 1/4 inch sliced tart cooking apples (about 8-10 medium)
1 cup granulated sugar
1 1/2 tsps ground cinnamon
1 reserved egg white
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon


1 cup powdered sugar
1 to 2 tablespoons milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Heat oven to 350 degrees F.  For crust, add enough milk to egg yolk to measure 2/3 cup; set aside.  In medium bowl, combine flour and salt.  Cut in butter until crumbly.  With fork, stir in milk mixture until dough forms a ball; divide into halves.  Roll out 1/2 of the dough, on lightly floured surface, into a 15 x 10 inch rectangle.  Place on bottom of ungreased 15x10x1 inch jelly roll pan.

For filling, sprinkle crushed cereal over top of rolled out dough in the pan.  Layer apples over cereal.  In small bowl, combined 1 cup granulated sugar and 1 1/2 tsps ground cinnamon.  Sprinkle over apples.
Roll remaining 1/2 of dough into a 15 1/2 x 10 1/2 inch rectangle; place over apples.  (It will be lumpy, but will smooth out when apples cook down).  In small bowl, with fork beat egg white until foamy; brush over top crust.  In another small bowl, stir together 2 tablespoons granulated sugar and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon; sprinkle over crust.  Bake for 45 - 60 minutes, or until lightly browned.

For glaze, in small bowl, stir together all glaze ingredients.  Drizzle over warm bars.  To make drizzling easy, put the glaze in a small zip lock bag, snip off a corner, and drizzle by squeezing the bag.
Cut into bars and enjoy.  I cut them more into a square than a bar because we like a nice dollop of ice cream on ours.  If you cut into bars, you will have about 3 dozen.  It's your choice.  These are so extraordinarily good, that you won't mind the effort to make them one little bit.

The awesome thing is, you can eat them without a plate or fork, unless you are enjoying them with some ice cream!  It's so much easier than eating apple pie.  If you want to make your family, friends or co-workers super happy, make a batch of these bars and share!   They are a party in your mouth that will make everyone happy and they make your house smell heavenly while they are baking.

Give this wonderful autumn dessert a try.  You will be so glad you did.

Everyday Donna

Things to Remember:

As American as baseball, hot dogs, apple pie and Chevrolet - 1970-s marketing jingle.

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