I’m back! It’s been two long months since I’ve been able to dedicate time to my baking and my blog. It was a long move with a lot of hiccups a long the way, but finally we are settled in!
Just in time for my favorite baking season of the year, fall!
Sigh… I must admit though, it hasn’t been very fall like here in Texas and my heart aches for the beautiful Hudson Valley.
It’s still SO incredibly hot here and feels nothing like the cool autumn days I cherished in New York . So I figured I’d take the best of this seasons baking ingredients and mix it with one of summer’s cool treats to make these delicious mini cheesecakes. They are FABULOUS. Creamy and cool with that spicy jolt of cinnamon and comfort of simmered apples.Mmm mmm!
I’m also always looking for fun new recipes Sierra and I can make together and these caramel apple bites stole my attention as soon as I saw the idea.
They didn’t hold up very well, so I definitely suggest doing them as an activity for a party or quality time with the kids and serving them immediately. Messy, but yummy! (It is notable that they are not any messier than classic caramel apples)
For the caramel apple bites:
1 package Kraft wrapped caramels
2 tbls heavy cream
2 large Granny Smith apples
Sprinkles and/or mini chocolate chips/nuts
20 or so skewers/lollipop sticks (I couldn’t find mine last minute so we winged it with corn on the cob holders, but I don’t recommend it! )
Using a melon-baller scoop out round circles of the apple. (Each apple makes 8 or so ‘bites’)
Add caramels and heavy cream to a double boiler. Heat until caramels are melted and mixture is smooth.
Dip apple bites in warm caramel and roll in sprinkles/chips/nuts.
Let set up a few minutes and devour!
(Reserve left over caramel for the cheesecakes if making both)
Now for these incredible little cheesecakes!
For the caramel apple topping:
2 large Granny Smith apples, peeled and sliced thin.
1/2-1 tsp cinnamon (I like a full teaspoon but I LOVE cinnamon)
1 tsp vanilla
2 tbs sugar (more or less to taste)
2 tbls butter
1/2 cup melted caramels
For the graham cracker crust:
1 cup graham cracker crumbs
3 tbls butter, melted
1 tbls sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
For the filling:
2 (8ounce) packages cream cheese (softened)
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
dash of salt
Caramel Apple Topping:
In a medium sauce pan combine sliced apples, butter, cinnamon, sugar and vanilla. Cover and simmer about an hour or until apples are soft.
Remove from heat and stir in melted caramels. (See above for directions on melting caramels)
Meanwhile for graham cracker crust:
Preheat oven to 350
Mix graham cracker crumbs, melted butter, cinnamon and sugar. Press about a tablespoon of the mixture into 12 cupcake liners.
Bake at 350 for 5 minutes.
Reduce oven heat to 300.
For the filling:
In a medium mixing bowl, beat soften cream cheese until light. Add sugar, vanilla and dash of salt. Beat well. Add eggs and beat until just mixed.
Layer cheese mixture over cooled graham cracker crusts.
Bake at 300 16-20 minutes.
Let cool to room temperature then layer cooled caramel apples on top. Cool in the fridge at least an hour.