Delightful with differing textures of fresh and baked fruit, crisp pastry and a creamy filling.
1. For the pastry base, place 1 sheet of store bought puff pastry on a baking sheet. Sprinkle with 1 tablespoon (15 ml) of icing sugar. Cover with another baking sheet (so that the pastry does not rise in the oven). Bake in 350 F (175C) oven until golden brown.
2. For the baked apple layer, combine 1 tablespoon (15 ml) sugar, ¼ cup (60 ml) apple brandy, and 1 teaspoon (5 ml) butter in a saucepan over medium, stirring occasionally until sugar dissolves. Set aside and let cool. Meanwhile, use a mandolin or knife to cut thin slices of 3 cored and peeled granny smith apples. Place a layer of apple slices on a baking sheet. Drizzle with apple brandy mixture. Repeat until all apple slices and syrup are used. Bake in 350 F (175C) oven until apples are soft.
3. For the cinnamon crémeux, immerse 1 gelatin sheet in cold water to soften and bloom. Heat 1 cup (250 ml) whipping cream, 1 cup (250 ml) milk and 1 scraped vanilla bean over high heat in a saucepan. Meanwhile, in a bowl whisk together 5 egg yolks and 2 tablespoons (30 ml) granulated sugar until smooth and runny, being careful not to let the mixture stand for too long. Slowly pour one third of the cream mixture into the bowl, whisking vigorously to temper. Scrape the mixture from the bowl into the saucepan and return to medium heat. Stir constantly until mixture is thick and smooth about 5-7 minutes. Remove from heat and add bloomed gelatin, 1 cup (250 ml) chopped white chocolate, and 1 tablespoon (15 ml) cinnamon powder and stir to incorporate. Pour into a square baking tin and place in fridge to set.
4. For the apple salsa, dice 1 cored granny smith apple into bite-sized pieces. Sprinkle with 1 tablespoon icing sugar and 1 tablespoon lemon juice.
5. To assemble, cut the puff pastry, baked apple layer, and crémeux into equal slices. Stack each layer beginning with pastry and ending with crémeux. Place salsa on top and serve.
This original recipe article first appeared in the Spring 2019 issue of City Style and Living Magazine.