Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Apple Amber Bars - gluten free

Gina had a heritage project at school and part of the project was to bring in food for a heritage lunch. She was studying Ireland and Scotland, and she wanted me to make a dessert. I went over lots of different kinds of desserts and we finally settled on Apple Amber Pie, an Irish dessert. Apples are very common in Irish desserts as it is one of the few fruits that grows well there. I think Gina was taken by the meringue topping since she is usually not fond of apple desserts. The lunch got changed to bringing only finger foods which made a pie more difficult, plus one of her classmates can't have gluten. So I modified the recipe to have a bar type cookie with a gluten free crust. For the crust, I used a recipe that was for lemon bars though I decreased the amount of rice flour and added almond meal. The recipe said it was for a 9x13 in pan though the amount of dough seemed more appropriate for an 8x8 pan. I ended up using a 9x11 in pan instead which still made a very thin crust and very buttery. Next time I may try using a full cup of rice flour and 3/4 cup almond meal. These bars were very good, even my husband who never likes apple desserts liked it.

1/2 cup rice flour
1/2 cup almond meal
1/2 cup cornstarch
1/2 cup powdered sugar
3/4 cup butter

Mix dry ingredients and then cut in butter until crumbly. Press into pan lined with parchment (I usually have the parchment overhanging the sides of the pan. Bake at 350 for 18 minutes or until light brown.

4 apples, peeled and grated
2 Tbsp water
Lemon juice from one lemon
3 eggs, separated
4 oz sugar
1/2 tsp cinammon

Heat the 2 Tbsp of water until steaming then stir in the grated apple. Cook until apple is soft and somewhat like applesauce but still a little chunky. Remove from heat and stir in lemon juice, 3 oz of sugar and cinnamon. Lightly beat 3 egg yolks then stir into apple mixture. Spread over baked crust and bake at 350 for 18 minutes. Beat egg whites until frothy and then gradually add remaining sugar and beat until stiff. Spread on top of cooked filling and then bake another 8 minutes or so, until top is light brown.