Please welcome guest blogger Christine Verleny.
I am a baker, I am.
I have always been surrounded by amazing chefs – Dori, Kara, Ellen and my ex-husband Jeff. I gained 20 pounds while married, the evidence of a well-fed life.
All of these folks (sorry guys) dim in comparison to my Grandma Tommie. Tommie Augusta Ruby Pearl Jesser to be exact. She was a force in the kitchen. An empty fridge? Not a problem, let me combine a few things and create an amazing meal.
As good as her food was, it was her baking that could bring you to your knees. Chocolate chip cookies, snickerdoodles, peanut butter cake with homemade chocolate frosting, and cheesecake were her finest baked goods. I have memories of my Grandma, cigarette hanging from her mouth, stirring up something delicious with her favorite wooden spoon. (I inherited that spoon after she died at the age of 92.)
I am lucky I have had chefs in my life, because I am a baker. It is my favorite thing to do in the kitchen. Thank you Grandma Tommie.
The first year Kara, Ellen and I went apple picking, I was confronted with an enormous bag of apples, freshly picked, and I knew I wanted to do something different, something that would not require me to make a crust. I dove into my roommate’s cookbooks and found the recipe for Swedish Apple Pie. Apparently, the Swedes hate making crusts.
The recipe is quick, easy and delicious. Use any apples you enjoy. Denser apples may not breakdown as much, but the different textures are wonderful when mixed. I have discovered that each time I bake this, it turns out slightly different and that is fine with me.
Swedish Apple Pie
Fill deep pie pan (or an 8 x 8 square pan) 2/3 full with sliced apples.
Mix: 1 TBSP of sugar (optional) and 1 TSP cinnamon and sprinkle over apples.
1 cup sugar
1 cup flour
1 sticks butter, melted
1 cup nuts – optional
Make sure the butter is slightly cooled before adding to the mixture (or it will cook the egg).
Pour batter over apples and bake for 45 minutes until golden brown.
Please enjoy with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream. That will make me happy.
Christine is an actor and jewelry designer, living in New York City.