Miso Caramel Apple Pie


 
Miso Caramel Apple Pie - Flaky pastry, fresh apples, and a sweet/savoury miso caramel
Miso Caramel Apple Pie - Flaky pastry, fresh apples, and a sweet/savoury miso caramel
Miso Caramel Apple Pie - Flaky pastry, fresh apples, and a sweet/savoury miso caramel
Miso Caramel Apple Pie - Flaky pastry, fresh apples, and a sweet/savoury miso caramel
Miso Caramel Apple Pie - Flaky pastry, fresh apples, and a sweet/savoury miso caramel
Miso Caramel Apple Pie - Flaky pastry, fresh apples, and a sweet/savoury miso caramel
Miso Caramel Apple Pie - Flaky pastry, fresh apples, and a sweet/savoury miso caramel
Miso Caramel Apple Pie - Flaky pastry, fresh apples, and a sweet/savoury miso caramel
Miso Caramel Apple Pie - Flaky pastry, fresh apples, and a sweet/savoury miso caramel

It doesn't feel at all like autumn, even though there are already apples and pears at the green market. The days are still hot and humid, and it's all too tempting to flick on the air conditioning and pretend that it isn't boiling outside. I am right in the middle of a bunch of travel (we leave for the Saveur awards TODAY and I am v nervous but also v excited! You can follow along on stories!), so hopefully once we make it back it will be well and truly warm clothes weather.

I head to San Fran the day after getting back from the blog awards, and then we are going to PARIS!! I am in the middle of an epic planning list, and spend my free time reading up on other bloggers who have been there, just to plan out the list of the eats. I can't wait! We used to travel heaps when I was little, but it was mainly to Canada. Europe is crazy far from New Zealand, so we are going to hopefully make the most of living on this side of the world and visit as many places as we can while we live here!

I'm just going to pretend that it's sweater weather though, because there is pie to be made! I riffed on the traditional salted caramel apple pie, by adding a little miso to the caramel. The first time I made it was when Jill and I made Claudia's miso butterscotch sauce to add to something that we were making. I was super on the fence about adding miso to caramel, but we found ourselves standing over the stove, eating it by the spoonful. The miso adds an amazing umami flavour to the caramel, which cuts through the sweetness perfectly. It goes amazingly with the apples - this is probably one of my favourite pies to date. 

A few wee notes:

  • Both the pie dough and the caramel can be prepared the day before you make the pie - the dough is best if you can give it an overnight rest. 
  • Have everything all ready to go when you make the caramel, because things move quickly.
  • I added a braided border to the pie, and covered up the little joins by using stamp cut-outs, which are my fave way to fancy up a pie with very little effort.
 

 

Miso Caramel Apple Pie
- Makes one 9" pie -

Pie crust recipe from four and twenty blackbirds

Pie dough
2 1/2 cups (310g) Flour
Pinch of Salt
2 tsp (8g) sugar
2 sticks (226g) cold butter, cut into cubes
1 cup (240ml) cold water
1 cup ice
1/4 cup (60ml) Apple cider vinegar

Miso Caramel
1 ½ cups (150g) Sugar
9 Tbsp (135g) unsalted butter
¾ cup (180ml) heavy cream
3 Tbsp white Miso
1 tsp flaky sea salt

Filling
1.2kg (2.6lbs) apples, peeled and finely sliced
Juice of 2 lemons
¼ (38g) cup flour
½ cup (50g) raw sugar

Egg wash - 1 egg whisked with 1 Tbsp water

- PROCESS -

PIE DOUGH

Place flour, sugar and salt into a large bowl. Cut butter into chunks, and add to the flour. Toss lightly to coat. Working quickly, using a pastry blender or  your fingers,  cut the butter into the flour mixture until there are only pea-sized chunks left. You want a few lumps of butter remaining to keep the pastry nice and tender.

Combine ice, water and cider vinegar in a bowl. Sprinkle a few tablespoons of the ice water into the flour and butter mixture, and using a stiff spatula or your hands, mix in well. Continue adding water a tablespoon at a time ( I normally need about 8-10 tbsp) until you have a dough that holds together well, but is not too wet. Squeeze together with your fingertips to make a homogenous dough. Shape into two discs, one slightly larger than the other, and wrap in plastic wrap. Rest in the fridge for at least two hours, or preferably overnight. 

MISO CARAMEL

Place the sugar in a medium sized heavy bottom saucepan. Place the cream and the miso in a small pan, and whisk together well. Heat until warmed, then keep on a very low heat until needed. Heat the sugar on medium, stirring constantly. The sugar will start to form clumps, then begin to melt. Cook until is it amber in colour, then remove from the heat and immediately add all of the butter. Be careful as the caramel will bubble rapidly. Once the butter is incorporated, add the cream and stir well. Stir in the salt, and pour into a glass jar. Allow to cool completely.

PIE ASSEMBLY AND FILLING

On a lightly floured surface, roll the smaller disc into a circle slightly larger than your pie dish. You want it to be approximately 1/8 inch (3mm) in thickness. Line a 9" pie dish, leaving the extra dough overhanging. Trim the dough so there is about 1 inch overlapping the edge of your dish. Place in the fridge while you prepare the filling and lattice.

Roll out the second, larger disc of dough into a rough rectangle approximately 1/8 inch thick. Use a pastry cutter to cut strips approximately 3/4 inch wide - these will be used for your lattice. Roll out scraps into a long segment, and cut thin strips using a pastry cutter. Braid the strips into 3 strand braids, to use for the border of the pie. Store the strips and braids on a baking sheet in the fridge until ready to use.

In a large bowl, toss together the apple and lemon juice. Leave to sit for 5 minutes, then drain any excess liquid. Add the flour and the sugar, and toss well to combine. Transfer the filling to the lined pie dish, packing the slices of apple in tightly, and mounding in the middle. Pour over most of the miso caramel, reserving about 1/4 cup for serving.

Arrange the strips of pie dough on the top of the pie, weaving a simple lattice. The Lattice that I did on this pie is the same concept, but you place the first line of strips horizontally, then weave in the other line of strips at a 45˚ angle. (Instead of perpendicular like a regular lattice). Trim any overlapping pie dough and lattice strips so that they are flush with the edge of the pie dish. If you are adding a braid border, brush a little egg wash then place on the braid. I used a couple of cut out pie stamp shapes to cover the joins.

Rest the pie in the fridge for at least 30 minutes. While the pie is resting in the fridge, preheat the oven to 425˚f/ 220˚c. Place a baking tray on the bottom rack of the oven. 

Brush the pie with egg wash, and sprinkle liberally with raw sugar. Bake at 425˚f / 220˚c for 20 minutes, or until the pastry is set and beginning to go golden. Reduce the temperature 375˚f / 190˚c, and bake until the pastry is deeply golden and the filling is bubbling. 

Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack. Serve warm or at room temperature, with the extra miso caramel.

Miso Caramel Apple Pie - Flaky pastry, fresh apples, and a sweet/savoury miso caramel

Earl Grey Cake with Raspberry Filling and Vanilla German Buttercream


 
Earl Grey Cake with Raspberry Filling and Vanilla German Buttercream - A delicate earl grey infused cake, filled with a tart raspberry filling, and finished with a creamy vanilla bean german buttercream
Earl Grey Cake with Raspberry Filling and Vanilla German Buttercream - A delicate earl grey infused cake, filled with a tart raspberry filling, and finished with a creamy vanilla bean german buttercream
Earl Grey Cake with Raspberry Filling and Vanilla German Buttercream - A delicate earl grey infused cake, filled with a tart raspberry filling, and finished with a creamy vanilla bean german buttercream
Earl Grey Cake with Raspberry Filling and Vanilla German Buttercream - A delicate earl grey infused cake, filled with a tart raspberry filling, and finished with a creamy vanilla bean german buttercream
Earl Grey Cake with Raspberry Filling and Vanilla German Buttercream - A delicate earl grey infused cake, filled with a tart raspberry filling, and finished with a creamy vanilla bean german buttercream
Earl Grey Cake with Raspberry Filling and Vanilla German Buttercream - A delicate earl grey infused cake, filled with a tart raspberry filling, and finished with a creamy vanilla bean german buttercream
Earl Grey Cake with Raspberry Filling and Vanilla German Buttercream - A delicate earl grey infused cake, filled with a tart raspberry filling, and finished with a creamy vanilla bean german buttercream
Earl Grey Cake with Raspberry Filling and Vanilla German Buttercream - A delicate earl grey infused cake, filled with a tart raspberry filling, and finished with a creamy vanilla bean german buttercream
Earl Grey Cake with Raspberry Filling and Vanilla German Buttercream - A delicate earl grey infused cake, filled with a tart raspberry filling, and finished with a creamy vanilla bean german buttercream
Earl Grey Cake with Raspberry Filling and Vanilla German Buttercream - A delicate earl grey infused cake, filled with a tart raspberry filling, and finished with a creamy vanilla bean german buttercream

Hiii! Apologies again for the silence - I have been doing a load of travelling recently, and it feels as if I'm only just managing to stay on top of things! I just got back from an amazing weekend in Colorado celebrating Tieghan's new book! I have a few days back in the city, where I have been recovering from mild altitude sickness (I am NOT built for the mountains), doing laundry, and hugging the cats, then on Saturday we head off again to Charleston for the Saveur Awards! I am so, so excited - I will pop as much as I can up on IG stories if you would like to follow along there! 

I'm going to keep this one short - I have been meaning to share this Earl Grey cake with you for the longest time, but haven't gotten around to making it to post. This is one of my absolute faves, and always seems to wow even the most skeptical of cake eater. This cake holds a special spot in my heart - it was the top tier flavour of our wedding cake, and I made it again two weekends ago to include in a friend's wedding cake!

The Cake itself is flavoured with an earl-grey infused milk, reinforced by ground tea leaves in the cake itself. The result is a beautifully coloured, delicately flavoured cake, which serves as the perfect canvas for whatever you would like to pair it with. For this version I actually took the filling of the vanilla cake that I made, which was a quick raspberry jam situation, and used it in this Earl Grey cake - the slight tartness of the raspberry offsets the bergamot flavour of the cake. Creamy silky German Buttercream finishes off the flavour profile. German buttercream is most definitely my favourite - it is pastry cream based, so doesn't have that intense buttery taste of swiss or italian buttercream. You can infuse it with all sorts of things, and it's nice and stable at room temp which makes it perfect for using in things like wedding cakes! 

Decorate this any way that you like - I had been eyeing up those pretty yellow flowers that I added to the cake every time I walked past them at the corner store, so I paired them with some rice flowers and a little greenery for a super simple semi naked finish.

A few wee notes:

  • Both the pastry cream for the buttercream and the raspberry filling will need time to cool completely, so allow time for this - either make them first and cool in a shallow dish (more surface area = faster cooling), or prepare the day before. 
  • Make sure that the cakes are completely cool before assembling - if possible I like to make them a day ahead or early on in the day so that they can have some time wrapped in plastic in the fridge before assembling. 
  • Stems of flowers need to be taped before they touch the surface of the cake - florist tape is great for this
 

 

Earl Grey Cake with Raspberry Filling and Vanilla German Buttercream
- Makes one 8", three layer cake-

Cake Recipe adapted from Sift and Whisk

Earl Grey Cake
2 cups (500ml) whole milk
12 earl grey tea bags
1 Tbsp Vanilla bean paste
4 1/2 cups (675g) all-purpose flour
3 3/4 tsp baking powder
5 tsp earl grey tea leaves, finely ground
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups (3 sticks / 340g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
3 cups (600g) sugar
6 eggs, at room temp

Raspberry Filling
3 cups Frozen Raspberries
1 cup (200g) sugar

Vanilla Bean German Buttercream
1 1/2 cups (375ml) milk
1 Tbsp Vanilla bean paste, extract, or the scrapings of one vanilla bean
1 cup plus 2 Tbsp (255g) sugar
3 Tbsp (24g) corn starch
1 egg
2 egg yolks
3 cups (675g, or 6 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature. 
pinch of salt

 

- PROCESS -

EARL GREY CAKE

Preheat the oven to 350˚f / 180˚c. Grease and line three 8" cake pans.

Place the milk in a medium saucepan. Heat over medium heat until just shy of a simmer. Add the earl grey tea bags, and steep for 20 minutes. Remove the tea bags, squeezing to get as much flavour as possible out. Measure out 1.5 cups (360ml) of the infused milk, topping up if necessary. Add the vanilla  and cool to room temperature. 

In a medium bowl, sift together the Flour, baking powder, ground tea, and salt. Set aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar on high speed until light and fluffy, approximately 5 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time, scraping down well after each addition. 

Add the flour mixture into the mixer in three additions, alternating with the milk in two additions (I like to think of it as a flour / milk sandwich - you always start and end with the flour). Mix until just combined. 

Divide the mixture between the three pans. Bake for 40-50 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean when inserted in the middle. Remove from the oven and cool in the tins for 10 minutes, before transferring to a wire rack and allowing to cool completely. Level off the tops of the cakes using a cake leveller or bread knife. If not using straight away, wrap tightly in plastic wrap and store in the fridge until you are ready to use.

RASPBERRY FILLING

Place the frozen raspberries in a medium pan, and place over medium heat. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally, then boil hard for one minute. Add the sugar, and boil for an additional 3 minutes, stirring frequently. Transfer to a container such as a mason jar, and allow to cool completely. 

GERMAN BUTTERCREAM

In a bowl, whisk together the sugar, corn starch, egg, egg yolk and salt. In a medium non-stick saucepan, heat the milk and vanilla to just shy of a simmer. Remove from the heat.

Using one hand to whisk constantly, pour half of the hot milk mixture into the egg mixture. This helps to temper the eggs and stop them from scrambling. Whisk until incorporated, and then pour the whole lot back into the saucepan. 

Heat the milk and egg mixture over medium heat, whisking constantly, until it begins to bubble. It will thicken quickly. Once it has thickened, cook for one minute, then remove from the heat. Pour into a shallow dish or bowl of a stand mixer and press some plastic wrap over the surface to avoid a skin from forming. Refrigerate until cold. If you are in a hurry, you can speed up this process by placing the custard mixture into a bowl, and placing the bowl into an ice bath, stirring frequently.

Fit your mixer with the whisk attachment. Whip the custard mixture on medium until creamy and lump-free. Begin adding the butter, a few cubes at a time, until fully incorporated. Switch to the paddle attachment and beat for a few minutes until smooth and silky. 

ASSEMBLY

Fit a piping bag with a round tip, or snip the end off a piping bag. Fill the bag with a few scoops of buttercream - this is going to be used to form a 'dam' to help hold in the filling. 

Place the first levelled layer onto a turntable or cake stand. Spread a small amount of buttercream evenly over the surface of the cake using an offset spatula. Pipe a ring of buttercream around the outside edge of the cake - this is the dam. Evenly spread about 1/3 of a cup of the raspberry filling over the thin layer of buttercream, keeping within the dam you have piped. Top with the second layer of cake. Repeat the process (pipe a dam, fill with raspberry filling), then top with the final layer of cake. 

Using the offset spatula, spread an even layer of buttercream over the top of the cake, using the spatula to smooth it down. Spread a layer of buttercream over the sides of the cake, then using a bench scraper or cake scraper, smooth the edges of the cake, adding more buttercream when needed. I went for a 'semi naked' look - so I just kept scraping off buttercream and adding it in places where I thought was necessary until I was happy with the look. Level off the top edges of the cake using the offset spatula, holding it level with the top and using it to sharpen the sides. 

Chill the cake in the fridge for about an hour to help firm it up.

Transfer to your desired cake stand, and decorate as desired. Store leftovers in an airtight container.

Earl Grey Cake with Raspberry Filling and Vanilla German Buttercream - A delicate earl grey infused cake, filled with a tart raspberry filling, and finished with a creamy vanilla bean german buttercream

Individual Steak and Mushroom Pies


 
Individual steak and mushroom pies - flaky pastry encases a rich meaty filling with a flavourful gravy
Individual steak and mushroom pies - flaky pastry encases a rich meaty filling with a flavourful gravy
Individual steak and mushroom pies - flaky pastry encases a rich meaty filling with a flavourful gravy
Individual steak and mushroom pies - flaky pastry encases a rich meaty filling with a flavourful gravy
Individual steak and mushroom pies - flaky pastry encases a rich meaty filling with a flavourful gravy
Individual steak and mushroom pies - flaky pastry encases a rich meaty filling with a flavourful gravy
Individual steak and mushroom pies - flaky pastry encases a rich meaty filling with a flavourful gravy
Individual steak and mushroom pies - flaky pastry encases a rich meaty filling with a flavourful gravy

Hi! I'm back! I've only been gone for two weeks, but loads and loads has happened in that time! We got back from the wedding / our road trip up Cape Cod, both of which were SO AMAZING. I had planned on getting a few posts up while we were up at the place we were staying for the wedding, but got all caught up in making an army of wedding cake / food / winery tours / catching up with everyone I hadn't seen in forever! I hauled some serious ass to get a bunch of things shot before we left (salted caramel apple babka and home-made Jelly tips, uhhhh hello!), so I have a couple of delicious recipes coming your way very soon! We got back a few days ago, but i've been having some me time / hiding from the internet for a little bit just to have a wee break!

I have been sitting on this recipe for a while, waiting for it to cool down a little before I shared it. Having your oven on for 3 hours in the middle of summer isn't the most ideal of situations, and I endured a very sweaty few days testing and re testing these when it was well over 30˚ outside. Don't do it. 

While most food in the States is fairly similar to what we have back home, one of the things that they haven't seemed to catch onto very much is individual meat pies. If I asked you if you wanted a pie in NZ, this is what I would be referring to - a flaky crusted pie, filled with a savoury meat filling. You can buy pies at almost every bakery / corner store / petrol station in New Zealand, and as far as I am concerned, they are they ultimate comfort food. They are hugely popular as lunch for tradesmen / builders back home, or as a quick hungover pick me up. 

You can get pies at a couple of places here in NYC, but I have found that they aren't quite the same - they don't quite hit the spot, so I set out to make something for myself! I went with a fairly simple filling - a classic steak and mushroom. The filling is totally cooked down to a meaty rich gravy situation, before being assembled along with the pastry crust and lid. These can be made in bulk and frozen, or they would be perfect for a dinner party served alongside a side salad. Enjoy!

A few wee notes:

  • If possible, give your pie filling time to cool completely in the fridge - it makes the assembly process much easier when everything is cold!
  • You will need to re-roll some of the dough to make enough lids for the pies - pop it in the fridge for 10 minutes or so before re rolling
  • I made this in my dutch oven which meant I could sear the meat etc on the stove and then transfer, but you can easily do it in a frying pan / casserole dish set up!
  • cooked pies freeze really well, just reheat them in the oven!
  • I used these mini pie dishes - they are super cheap, and my fave!
  • This mixture would likely make 1 - 2 larger pies.
 

 

Individual Steak and Mushroom Pies
- Makes Eight 5 inch (13cm) Pies -

Pie dough
5 cups (620g) Flour
Pinch of Salt
4 sticks (450gg) cold butter, cut into cubes
1 cup (240ml) cold water
1 cup ice
1/4 cup (60ml) Apple cider vinegar

Filling
1kg (2.2lbs) braising steak such as brisket, fat removed, diced into 1cm chunks
2 large onions, finely diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
450g (16oz) button mushrooms, finely chopped
1 Tbsp fresh thyme
3-4 rashers thick-cut bacon, finely chopped
5 cups (1.25L) beef stock
salt and pepper to season
6 Tbsp (54g) Corn Starch
1 cup (240ml) water

Egg wash - 1 egg whisked with 1 Tbsp water

- PROCESS -

PIE DOUGH

This is best made in two batches - do the first with half of the ingredients (2.5 cups flour, pinch of salt, 2 sticks butter), then repeat with the second half. Divide each batch into two before wrapping and resting. The apple cider vinegar / ice mixture is enough for both batches.

Place half of the flour and salt into a large bowl. Cut butter into chunks, and add to the flour. Toss lightly to coat. Working quickly, using a pastry blender or  your fingers,  cut the butter into the flour mixture until there are only pea-sized chunks left. You want a few lumps of butter remaining to keep the pastry nice and tender.

Combine ice, water and cider vinegar in a bowl. Sprinkle a few tablespoons of the ice water into the flour and butter mixture, and using a stiff spatula or your hands, mix in well. Continue adding water a tablespoon at a time ( I normally need about 8-10 tbsp) until you have a dough that holds together well, but is not too wet. Squeeze together with your fingertips to make a homogenous dough. Shape into two rectangles and wrap in plastic wrap.

Repeat the process with the second half of ingredients. Rest in the fridge for at least two hours, or preferably overnight. 

FILLING

You can either cook the beef etc in a frying pan and transfer to an oven safe casserole dish or something similar, or if you have a cast iron dutch oven, you can cook off the ingredients on the stove, then transfer the whole thing to the oven

Preheat the oven to 350˚f / 180˚c. Place a large cast iron dutch oven (mine is a 5.5 quart), over high heat. Once heated, add a glug of olive oil, and add half of the beef. Cook until golden brown on all sides. Remove and set aside. Repeat with the second half of the beef, and set aside with the first half. 

Reduce the heat to medium. Add another glug of oil to the pan, and add the onion, garlic, and a big pinch of salt. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring often, until the onions are translucent. Add the mushrooms and cook for a further 5 minutes. 

If you are using a frying pan and transferring to a casserole dish, transfer now, then add the thyme, bacon, and stock. Season well with salt and pepper. 

Cover the dish and transfer to the oven. Bake for 2 hours, stirring occasionally, until the meat is tender and the gravy is bubbling.

Carefully remove from the oven. In a small bowl, mix the water and corn starch until smooth. Stir into the pie filling. Return to the oven, and bake, uncovered, for 45-55 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes or so, until the gravy has thickened. 

Remove from the oven and allow to cool to completely, or, if preparing ahead, store in the fridge until using. (It is ideal if the mixture is cold when assembling the pies, so if possible, give it some time in the fridge if you can)

ASSEMBLY AND BAKING

On a lightly floured surface, roll out one of the rectangles of dough to approximately 1/4 inch (6mm) thickness. Line each pie dish, leaving a little dough overhanging. Re-roll scraps if needed to finish lining all of the dishes, or use a little of the second rectangle of dough. 

Place the dishes on a baking sheet, and rest in the fridge for about 10 minutes to firm up the pastry. 

Divide the filling between the lined dishes, fill each dish with enough filling to just reach the top of the dish (see photo for reference). You may have a little bit leftover. 

Roll out the second rectangle of dough to 1/4 inch thick. Cut a circle a little wider than the pie dish, and place over the filling. Trim the dough so it is flush with the edge of the pans, and seal the top crust to the bottom by crimping with a fork. Cut a vent in the top crust. 

Repeat with the rest of the pies, re-rolling scraps of pastry if needed. 

Rest the pies in the fridge for 20 minutes. While they are resting, preheat the oven to 350˚f / 180˚c. Brush the tops of the pies with eggwash. Bake for 30-40 minutes, until the pies are golden brown and the filling is bubbly. Remove from the oven and cool slightly before serving. Leftovers can be frozen.

Individual steak and mushroom pies - flaky pastry encases a rich meaty filling with a flavourful gravy