Bourbon Caramel Apple Pie Cookies

Here in North Texas we have had something of a cold snap.  By cold I mean temps that range from upper 40’s to mid-60’s.  I know there are those who snicker at my definition of cold snap, but here in my neck of the woods this is December weather.

Caramel Apple Pie Cookies

All this cool weather has put me in in the mood for all my cold weather food favorites.  In particular, apple pie.  One of the best apple pies I have ever had had a buttery layer of caramel under the top crust.  The pie tasted like caramel apples and pie all in one.  It was divine!

Caramel Apple Pie Cookies 

That is the inspiration for these cookies.  I modified the dough from my Almond and Chocolate Filled Butter Cookies with brown sugar and cinnamon, made an apple pie filling, and some lovely caramel sauce.  To round out the flavor I thew in some bourbon.  In my opinion nothing goes better with apple pie and cinnamon than bourbon, but feel free to leave it out if you prefer.

Caramel Apple Pie Cookies

These cookies are lovely the day they are made, but you can store them in an air tight container in the refrigerator for three days.  The cookies will not be as crisp, but they will taste just as good.

Bourbon Caramel Apple Pie Cookies      Yield about 36 cookies

For the cookie base:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup salted butter, cubed and kept cold
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 cup milk

For the apple filling:
2 Granny Smith, or other firm, apples, peeled, cored and chopped into small pieces
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon all spice
1/8 teaspoon cloves
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
2 tablespoons bourbon
2 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon cornstarch

For the caramel sauce:
1/4 cup water
1 cup sugar
4 tablespoons butter
1 cup cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 cup bourbon

Heat the oven to 350F and have a mini-muffin pan ready.

Caramel Apple Pie Cookies Caramel Apple Pie Cookies 

Begin by preparing the apple pie filling.   In a medium skillet over medium heat combine the apples, sugar, butter, and spices.  Once the butter melts and the apples begin to soften turn off the heat and add the bourbon.  Return the pan to the heat and reduce it to low.  Combine the water with the cornstarch and add to the apple mixture.  Stir until the mixture thickens.  Allow to cool while you prepare the cookie base.

Caramel Apple Pie Cookies 

In the bowl of a food processor combine the flour, butter, sugar, cinnamon, vanilla and milk.  Pulse until the mixture forms a ball.   On a lightly floured surface roll the dough into a log and divide into 32 even pieces.   Roll each piece into a ball.

Place a ball of dough in the cup of a mini-muffin pan and, using a dough tamper or your fingers, press down until the dough reaches the top if the cup.  (See Strawberry Jam Tarts for detailed pictures of this process.)

 Caramel Apple Pie Cookies Caramel Apple Pie Cookies

Fill the cups with a rounded teaspoon of the apple filling.  Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown.

While the cookies cool prepare the caramel.

In a medium pot with tall sides add the sugar in an even layer.  Pour in the water and gently stir to combine.  Using a pastry brush and some water wash the sides of the pot to make sure no sugar crystals are clinging to the sides.

Cook the sugar over medium heat, swirling the pot occasionally but do not stir, until it is a dark amber color.  Add the butter and whisk to combine.  Turn off the heat and add the cream slowly, whisking constantly until the caramel is well combined.  Add the vanilla and bourbon.

Caramel Apple Pie Cookies Caramel Apple Pie Cookies 

Heat this mixture over medium heat and bring to a boil.  Once boiling cook for one minute.  Cool for thirty minutes.

Caramel Apple Pie Cookies 

Once the caramel is cool pour about 1/2 teaspoon over the top of each cookie. Allow the caramel to set for two hours before serving.

 Caramel Apple Pie Cookies


Caramel Apple Pie Cookies

Author: Kelly

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