A spoonful of crunchy meringue, smooth and slightly tangy applesauce, nuts coated in maple caramel, and finally crumbly Digestive cookies. The assembly of this dessert takes minutes and the preparation can be scheduled over a couple of days.
Digestive cookies are great but Graham crackers can be substituted or LU cookies or any buttery cookies that would taste just as good crumbled as in one piece!
The applesauce is homemade with a bunch of apples that were languishing in the fridge.
The apple peels can be used to make an apple-flavored syrup to drink throughout the week.
The meringues are homemade but buying them is really not a bad idea.
INGREDIENTS: 6 servings
- 2 pounds of cut-up apples
- 4 tablespoons of powdered sugar (or more to taste)
- juice of 1/2 lemon
- 1/4 cup of water
Make the applesauce by peeling and cutting the apples in small dice (try to cut them in the same size). Place the apples, sugar, lemon juice and water in a large pot; bring to a simmer and cover; cook for 5 minutes. Cool the apples a bit then mash with an immersion blender or leave as is if you like texture.
Meringues: Bring 2 egg whites to room temperature. Beat till frothy, add 1/4 teaspoon of cream of tartar and continue beating, adding gradually 1 1/2 cup of sugar. When the meringue is shiny and stiff, stop beating it and drop large spoonfuls on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake at 200F for 45 minutes or longer, until the meringues are dry and crispy.
To caramelize the nuts:
Using 1 cup of chopped nuts (I used walnuts or pecans), heat a little butter in a skillet and toast the nuts for a few minutes, carefully watching to prevent them burning; add 1/4 cup of maple syrup to the nuts and swirl it around to coat them evenly. Cool.
Assembly: Crumble the cookies and place the equivalent of one cookie in each glass; add a couple of tablespoons of glazed nuts and add 1/2 cup of applesauce on top of the nuts and biscuit. Finish with the meringue crumbled coarsely on top of the applesauce.
To make the apple-flavored syrup: Place the peels, several cups of water, the juice of half a lemon and 1 1/2 cup of sugar in a large pot; add either the seeds of a vanilla pod, a cinnamon stick or a couple of cardamom pods. Simmer gently for 45 minutes (until the mixture looks syrupy). Strain and reserve the syrup to use as a drink (add more water to taste) or to use on any apple cake or muffins.
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