Hasselback Apples

Posted on: Thursday, October 29, 2015

With my apple tree continuing to overflow well into October, I’ve been on a mission to create as many recipes as I can with my favorite fruit. Back in early September, I grabbed a bucketful and added half to a rustic tart, and threw the other half into my slow cooker for a cinnamon-spiced applesauce. Last weekend, I made a classic apple crisp with a buttery, toasted almond crumble on top.
While those were all sweet spins, I decided it was time to make something savory. Picking up an apple, I was inspired by the Swedish Hasselback approach to baking a potato. With a sharp knife, you create a fan-like shape on the outer surface that when baked, browns and crisps up a bit while the interior remains tender. With similar texture profiles, I used the same technique on an apple to fancify a simple baked appetizer. Between each crevice, I sandwiched a thin slice of brie and to add a sweet crunch, topped the apple with a brown sugar and pecan crumble streusel. Slathered atop my favorite rosemary and sea salt crackers, this was a winning take on baked brie.
Baked Hasselback Apples with Brie and Pecans

1 Gala or Honeycrisp apple (or any firm, sweet, red one)
1/4 of a wedge of brie cheese, skin removed, cut into 1/8-inch slices
2 T butter, melted
2 T brown sugar
1/4 t cinnamon
1/4 t salt
1 T flour
2 T chopped pecans
Your favorite crackers (I used rosemary sea salt)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.


Core the apple and cut it in half. Beginning at the outermost edge, cut 1/8-inch slits with a pairing knife through the apple, making sure not to cut through. Cut out the wedges of every other interval. In each gap, place a slice of brie. 


In a small bowl stir together 1 T melted butter, 1 T brown sugar, 1/8 t cinnamon and 1/8 t salt. With a brush, brush the entire rounded surface of each half of the brie-filled apple with the melted mixture. 


Spray a baking dish and place the apple halves cut side down. Cover the entire dish with aluminum foil and bake for 12-15 minutes until the apples have softened.


Meanwhile in the same bowl, add the remaining 1 T melted butter, 1 T brown sugar, 1/8 t cinnamon, 1/8 t salt, flour and chopped pecans. Stir to combine. Carefully spread the pecan mixture over the cooked apple halves, allowing it to fill in the crevices. Bake the apples uncovered for about 5-7 more minutes until the topping is browned. Remove from heat and serve with your favorite crackers.

Planning a Halloween gathering this week? I encourage you to serve this sweet and savory appetizer for your costume-clad guests!

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