Saturday, 12 November 2011

Toffee Apple Mille feuille

This one had been on my mind for a while. Throughout Halloween and a lot of November, toffee apples are everywhere. Held in kids sticky hands as the they gather around the bonfire with cinders and soot rising into the cold night sky. They're usually made fairly quickly, wrapped in cellophane and plunged onto a stick. Perfectly portable while trick or treating. This however, is one for the grownups!

Traditionally mille feuille are French pastries translated as "thousand leaves", made with layers of pastry built upon each other. Sandwiched in between the pastry is usually creme patisserie. The thought struck me to replace the pastry with apples, which are at their best at this time of year. What goes better with apples than toffee.

For the apple mille feuille, I used Bramley apples, because when they're cooked they turn soft brownish and a little fluffy. They manage to retain a sharpness however that cuts through the richness of the caramel. Deliciously decadent!


1 large Bramley apple 
30g butter
1 and half tbsps caster sugar
juice of half a lemon
condensed milk or dulce du leche
5 tbsps granulated sugar

First the Bramley, need to be sliced really thinly. If you have a mandolin, great! If like me you aren't so lucky, most box graters have a large slicer section on one of the sides. Slice the apple into thin slices.

In a pot melt the butter over a low heat and then add the caster sugar and lemon juice. Stir to combine thoroughly.

Lay the apple slices on a baking tray covered with parchment paper and brush with the butter mix on both sides. Place in the oven at 100C for approximately 30 mins or until they start to turn a soft brown to golden colour.

Meanwhile, you can make the dulce du leche. This can actually be bought in ready made now. If you would prefer to make your own, take the condensed milk. David Lebovitz has a fairly simple method for making your own. If you use shop bought pour into a saucepan and over a low heat whisk until smooth. 

When the apples are ready, take them out of the oven and arrange them into three piles- small, medium sized and large. You will almost be building an apple tower so these are the three sections. On the largest one, pour over some of the dulce du leche. Place the medium size pile next and another layer of dulce du leche. Finally the smallest layer goes on top.

In a medium saucepan, add the granulated sugar and over a low heat, let it turn into toffee caramel. Don't stir the toffee as this can leave it grainy at the end. Swirl the sugar around the pan instead of stirring. When it reaches the right side of done, it will be a deep golden, almost rust colour. Any more it becomes burnt and bitter. Carefully, using a cocktail stick, dip one piece of apple into the toffee and swirl it round to coat it. Place it on top of the mille feuille.

Finally with a metal spoon, dip it in the toffee and sprinkle over the mille feuille.
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