Good Eats and Sweet Treats from My Small Boston Kitchen

Spiced Apple Blondies

Have you ever tried to locate a bag of cinnamon baking chips in September in the Greater Boston Area? If not, don’t bother — been there, tried that, failed miserably. I even had my coworker go on a hunt of her own for me, to no avail. Who knew it would be so hard to track down one single ingredient? I even checked Amazon, but at over $4 for a tiny bag, I just couldn’t justify the purchase. So I made my own rendition of these blondies instead.

I love blondies and brownies, and basically anything that comes in bar form. Something about the density and the fudge factor just really does it for me, and you can make them so many different ways that it never gets boring. I don’t get cravings much, but when I do I’ve always got a hankering for a big fudgy chocolate brownie. Now I know these aren’t that, but they’re the next best thing. And given that we’re in the thick of fall/apple baking season (or rather, approaching the end, which kind of blows my mind), these just fit right in. I’d never considered putting anything into my blondies — straight up is how I like them — but this idea seemed too appealing and perfectly seasonal to pass up.

Spiced Apple Blondies recipe - Sweetly Serendipity

In lieu of the cinnamon chips, I decided to add some fall spices, to emulate the flavor profile the cinnamon chips would have created. I contemplated adding white chocolate chips, but thought that’d make these a bit too sweet, so I stopped myself. Nuts, too, might have been a nice addition, but as a blondie purist, the addition of apples and spices already seemed like more than enough. Turns out though, applies and spices and blondies all together are a pretty wonderful thing.

Spiced Apple Blondies recipe - Sweetly Serendipity

I really loved these. Every dessert, for me at least, has it’s time and place, but these are just perfect for the long, chilly fall days. When the sun sets before 6pm and the impending winter starts to be palpable in the air, you need little bursts of bright and happy, and these bars are definitely that. They are the epitome of the wordy fudgy — so thick and dense, you might even be tricked for a moment. They have a wonderful, delicate crust on top, and tender pieces of sweet apple throughout. The spices warm each little bite up, almost as if you’re sipping hot mulled cider, or indulging in a cider donut.

Spiced Apple Blondies recipe - Sweetly Serendipity

Spiced Apple Blondies

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, divided
  • 1 cup + 2 tablespoons brown sugar, divided
  • 1 egg
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1/2 cup spelt flour (can substitute all-purpose)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • Pinch allspice
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 medium apples, peeled and cut into 1/4” chunks

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line an 8 x 8-inch pan with aluminum foil or parchment paper and coat with cooking spray.
  2. In a small pan, melt 1 tablespoon butter. Add 2 tablespoons brown sugar and chopped apples, and stir to combine. Let simmer together over low heat for about 5 minutes, until apples are starting to soften. Set aside to cool while you prepare the batter.
  3. Melt remaining 1/2 cup butter in the microwave. Combine remaining brown sugar and melted butter in a large bowl, and whisk to combine. Add egg and vanilla, and whisk again to combine. Add both flours, salt, cinnamon and allspice, and stir again until just combined. Be careful not to over-mix! Fold in the apples gently until just incorporated, then pour batter into prepared pan, smoothing it lightly to even it out.
  4. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, or until the bars are set and a delicate crust has formed on top. The edges will be slightly pulling away from sides of pan. Allow bars to cool for at least 2 hours before slicing and serving.
http://www.sweetlyserendipity.com/dessert/brownies-and-bars/spiced-apple-blondies/


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