Who loves fall baking? I do. I must gain weight every single fall. And when I think of the season, one of the first things that comes to mind is apples! Apple picking, Apple Crisp and what about cheese? Oh cheese, how I love you!! I can’t think of anything better than pairing cheese and crackers with a glass of wine. There’s a local winery here where you can take your own food and simply buy a bottle of wine to enjoy. On a cool crisp day, I could sit there for hours, soaking up the season.
Today I’m delighted to share a recipe that brings both the apples and the cheese together. How does a delectable Apple and Cheese Danish sound?
Apple and Cheese Danish
- 2 sheets frozen puff pastry sheets thawed
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 6 cups of apples peeled, cored and thinly sliced
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1-1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 tablespoon caramel sauce
- 8 ounce package cream cheese softened
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
Preheat oven to 375
Lightly grease a 15.5 x 10.5 x 1-inch baking pan (or 15x10x1-inch baking pan); set aside. On a lightly floured surface, unfold one pastry sheet and roll into a 15x10-inch rectangle. Transfer to the prepared baking pan, pressing pastry to edges of pan. Bake about 12 minutes or until golden (pastry will puff and shrink from sides of pan). Cool pan on wire rack.
While that cools, in a large skillet heat butter over medium heat until melted. Add apples; cook about 8 minutes or until apples are crisp-tender, stirring occasionally. In a small bowl, combine 1/2 cup of the granulated sugar, the flour, 1/2 teaspoon of the cinnamon, and the nutmeg. Sprinkle over apples. Add caramel sauce. Cook and stir over medium-low heat for 2 minutes more. Set aside.
In a medium mixing bowl beat cream cheese and the remaining 1/2 cup granulated sugar with an electric mixer on medium speed until smooth. Beat in egg and vanilla just until combined. Carefully spread cream cheese mixture over baked pastry within 1 inch of the edges. Spoon apple mixture over cream cheese mixture.
On a lightly floured surface, unfold the remaining pastry sheet and roll into a 13x10-inch rectangle (make sure pastry is large enough to completely cover apple mixture). Place on top of apple mixture. Lightly press edges of top pastry to edges of bottom pastry. Lightly brush top pastry with milk. Using a sharp knife, cut a few slits in pastry to allow steam to escape. Sprinkle sugar and remaining 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon over pastry.
Bake 35 to 40 minutes or until pastry is slightly puffed and golden. Cool completely on wire rack. Cut with pizza wheel.
Adapted from a Better Homes and Garden Recipe.
To Store: Place any leftovers in an airtight container and cover. Store in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.
I tried this both warm and cold. I preferred it cold. It is as good as any pastry you’d buy in a pastry or coffee house and it’s perfectly suited for fall. Of course if would be a fabulous sweet treat to serve throughout the year, I just feel all warm and cozy when I think of enjoying a piece with a hot cup of coffee on a cool autumn morning. Doesn’t that sound perfect? Be sure to print yourself a copy!