Today is a beautiful, apple-icious day!
I love Spring. It just may be my favorite season. It and Summer. The Fall is pretty nice too. It’s winter I’m not so fond of. The snow is pretty, it’s the cold I have issues with, though I know some people like it. This week has been filled with mild temperatures and bright sunny days. It’s almost like a pre-cursor of what’s to come. My husband reported seeing his first Robin already and the Killdeer are quickly taking up residence here. The thing I love most about Spring is feeling the warmth of the sun on my face and I ‘m so looking forward to the heady scent of apple blossoms wafting from the trees. That and flowers popping up everywhere, getting re-acquainted with my Spring bulbs, fresh green grass and buds on the trees. I have to admit it’s been a mild winter here in Ontario, even by my standards, and it seems almost too good to be true, that Spring is officially just a week away. So this may seem rather odd, especially since we’ve just sprung our clocks forward an hour in anticipation of Spring, but I’m going to ask you to indulge me for just a moment.
Remember the Fall.
It wasn’t all that long ago, really.
Think falling leaves, warm winds and crisp green apples.
Or curly haired sheep with beautiful blue eyes and straw on their forheads.
Or pink pig caramel apples with candy watermelon slice ears, m&m eyes and a marshmallow snout.
Fall for me always includes a county fair or two and a delicious caramel apple. Or two. I know some of you worry about all that messiness. Not me. No Siree. I’m all for messy, when messy tastes that good.
I love the crispness of the apple and the chewiness of the thick caramel followed by the deliciousness of the chocolate and crunchy peanut coating. Mmmm, so good.
I made this yummy treat last week and it reminds me of all of that minus the chocolate but with peanut butter, apples, Skor bits, caramel and chopped peanuts all on a sugar cookie crust, and sprinkled lightly with cinnamon, you won’t miss it. This Apple Caramel Cookie Pizza is a delicious treat and will be sure to delight young and old alike.
It combines the flavours of “Fall Fair” caramel apples on a delightful sugar cookie crust that is so yummy and delicious, it will literally disappear before your very eyes. Seriously.
You’ll be, like, wait a minute – where’s the Apple Caramel Cookie Pizza I just made? No seriously, is this a joke?
So my advice is, cut yourself a generous piece before serving, because as soon as you turn around, it will instantly disappear ~ it’s that good.
Now you can go back to blue skies and the sweet smell of Spring. Oh, that does sound good, doesn’t it!! Happy, happy, happy!
Apple Caramel Cookie Pizza
Slightly adapted from Taste of Home Magazine
3/4 cup refrigerated sugar cookie dough
3 ounces cream cheese, softened
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
2 tablespoons Skor pieces (optional)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 medium tart apple, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons chopped unsalted peanuts
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 cup caramel topping, warmed
1 tablespoon water
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1. Pat cookie dough into a pie pan or lay it on a pizza pan coated with cooking spray. Bake at 350 °F for 12 -14 minutes or until slightly brown around the edges. Cool completely.
2. In a small bowl, beat the cream cheese, brown sugar, peanut butter, and vanilla. Add Skor pieces and stir. Spread over sugar cookie crust. Arrange apple slices on top in a circle. Sprinkle with chopped peanuts and dust with cinnamon. Drizzle with warmed caramel topping and cut into wedges to serve.
To prevent the apple slices from browning, I brushed them with a pastry brush dipped in a solution of 1 tablespoon lemon juice and 1 tablespoon water.
Homemade Caramel Sauce
1/3 cup water
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup whipping cream
1/4 tsp vanilla
1. Place the water and sugar into a small, heavy saucepan over medium high heat. Cook undisturbed until the sugar starts to color around the edges. Gently swirl the pot to even out the color and continue to cook only until the mixture turns a light amber. Immediately remove the pan from the heat.
2. At arm’s length, gradually stir in the heavy cream. Be careful as it will bubble up. Stir until the caramel is smooth. When the bubbles subside, stir in the vanilla extract.
Like all caramel, this sauce thickens considerably as it cools. It can be made ahead and refrigerated, then reheated for a few seconds in the microwave or on the stove over low heat. The sauce will be quite stiff when cold and will thin as it warms.
Caramel sauce can be kept covered and refrigerated until the best-by date stamped on the cream carton.
Other recipes with apples:
Vanilla Bean Baker’s Apple Pizza Pie
My Kitchen Addiction’s Balsamic Onion, Apple, and Gorgonzola Pizza
Brown Eyed Baker’s Homemade Caramel Apples
Picky-Palate’s Honeyed Apple Peanut Butter Tart
The Pioneer Woman’s Quick & Easy (and Yummy) Apple Tart