Monday, October 13, 2014

Cream Cheese Apple Tart


So it's been two weeks since my last post, which is the longest I've ever gone without blogging since first starting this endeavor last June. I'm sure all three of my readers are seething with rage and anxiety. But it's been a super busy few weeks, which tends to leave blogging in the dust. First my husband went out of town, meaning I was fending for myself with three little kids for a few days. Then I decided to give him a taste of his own medicine by going out of town myself for three days to my 10-year college reunion in Illinois. The fellowship was sweet, the fall colors were gorgeous, and my poor little tuckus was just about frozen right off of my body. I had signed up to do the Homecoming 5k, but when the morning dawned at about 35 degrees with snow flurries, I decided I'll save my running in extreme weather conditions for the Zombie Apocalypse, thank you very much. All in all, it was a great trip, though.

The colors! And the friends! And the memories!
The day I returned from the Chicago area, my brother came to town for a few days, inspiring the following goofy faces like any good brother/uncle: 


Since my kids were on fall break, we were able to have some quality time with Uncle Joel, visiting the pumpkin patch, going to parks, and arguing over whether it's okay for him to teach my children how to belch on command. 

Now that things are beginning to settle back down to normal and we're almost halfway through October, I'm ready to share this lovely dessert to ring in the autumn spirit, if you haven't already rung it in yourself with tall boots over jeans and pumpkin spice lattes to the point of credit card debt. It has two of my favorite flavors of fall--apples and cinnamon--with a unique twist, something different from the usual apple pie. (Not that there's anything wrong with the usual apple pie.) 


I've made this twice now and received several compliments on its taste and appearance. The fancy-looking apple pinwheel effect on top definitely gives it visual appeal, and the taste is just as good as the look. Plus, I love the unexpected cheesecakey layer hiding underneath the apples.


And doncha just want to grab that one gooey-looking cinnamon apple on top?


I'd be willing to bet you'll make a lot of friends if you bring this in place of apple pie to your family's Thanksgiving this year...but why wait until then? It's October--let the autumn eating commence!

Cream Cheese Apple Tart
(Adapted from The Cooking Channel)

Ingredients:

For the crust:
1 homemade or purchased pie crust

For the cream filling:
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 egg
1/4 c. sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

For the apple top:
2 large Granny Smith apples, peeled and sliced
1/4 c. sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon

Directions:

1. Bake the pie crust according to package directions in a 10-inch tart pan (or 9-inch pie plate).

2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

3. In a medium bowl, beat together cream cheese, egg, sugar, and vanilla until smooth. Pour into the baked pie crust.

4. In a large bowl, mix sugar and cinnamon. Add apple slices and toss to coat. Arrange individual apple slices in a pinwheel pattern on top of the cream cheese filling, starting at the outer edge of the tart and working inward.

5. Bake about 40 minutes, until apples are tender and golden.

Serves 8.


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