APPLE-WALNUT CROSTATA WITH CARAMEL SAUCE
A crostata is nothing more than a fruit tart that is meant to be rustic, so do not be too concerned if this is your first time working with pie dough. Three different types of apple are used in this crostata: the tart, green Granny Smith; the sweet, crisp, red Fuji; and the very sweet Golden Delicious. By blending these three different varieties, the flavor of the crostata becomes more complex and balanced. Fresh berries, pears, or peaches work equally well.
- 1 pie dough disk (recipe below)
- 1⁄4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon freshly squeezed orange juice
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1⁄4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 3 cups apple slices, 1⁄8 inch thick (1 cup each Granny Smith, Fuji, and Golden Delicious)
- 1⁄2 cup chopped walnuts
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cubed
- 1 large egg white, beaten
- 1 tablespoon water
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- Set the EGG for indirect cooking (with convEGGtor) at 400ºF/204ºC. Place the Baking Stone on top of the grid.
- Dust an Aluminum Pizza Peel with flour. Roll the pie dough into a 12-inch circle on a lightly floured surface and place the dough on the peel.
- Mix the brown sugar, orange juice, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a large bowl. Add the apples and walnuts and toss until well coated with the brown sugar mixture. Spread the apple mixture in the center of the pastry, leaving a 2-inch border of dough exposed. Fold over the pastry edge toward the center, leaving the edges and folds of the dough very rustic. Dot the exposed apples with the butter. Mix the egg white and water in a small bowl and brush the outside of the dough with the egg wash. Sprinkle the top of the crostata with the granulated sugar.
- Carefully transfer the crostata to the Baking Stone. Close the lid of the EGG and bake for 40 minutes, or until golden brown. Using the pizza peel, transfer the crostata to a platter.
Caramel Sauce Ingredients
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1⁄4 cup water
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
Caramel Sauce Instructions
- To make the sauce, using a whisk, stir the sugar and water together in a small, heavy-bottomed saucepan on the stovetop.
- Cook over medium heat for 15 minutes, occasionally brushing the sides of the pan with a wet brush. Do not stir.
- When the sugar is amber in color, slowly add the cream, whisking constantly for 3 to 5 minutes, until the sugar is dissolved.
- Remove the pan from the heat and whisk the butter into the caramel, 1 tablespoon at a time, until smooth and creamy.
- Let the caramel sauce cool for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Pour into a bowl and serve with the crostata.
Pie Dough Ingredients
- 2 cups all-purpose flour plus extra as needed
- 1⁄2 teaspoon table salt
- 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, cubed
- 3 tablespoons vegetable shortening
- 4 to 5 tablespoons cold water
Pie Dough Instructions
- To make the dough by hand, put the flour and salt in a medium bowl and stir to blend.
- Add the butter and shortening and, using a pastry cutter or fork, work the butter into the flour until the pieces of butter are pea size.
- Add the water 1 tablespoon at a time and mix just until you can form a ball. Do not overwork the dough.
- Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and form the dough into a ball.