- Yield: 45-50
- Prep Time: 30 minutes
- Cook Time: 30 minutes
Caramel Apple Pie Croquembouche
Ever since I first watched the Great British Baking Show, I have wanted to attempt one of these!!! It is not nearly as big as a regular croquembouche, but the textures and flavors and lovely display are all there. You can make this baby as big as you want really. It has the warming flavors of apple pie in the center and a lovely crunchy caramel on top to balance flavors and textures. This recipe is totally doable and well worth the effort. I hope you have as much fun making this as I did! Enjoy!
- Pate a Chou Dough
- unsalted butter - 6 tbs.
- water - 3/4 c.
- All Purpose Gluten Free flour blend (I used Great Value All-Purpose Flour Blend) - 1 c.
- salt - 1/8 tsp.
- sugar - 1 tsp.
- eggs - 4-5
- Apple Pie Filling
- apples (large) - 4
- cinnamon - 4 tsp.
- Agave Nectar - 5 tbs. (or to taste)
- salt - 1/8 tsp
- cloves - 1/8 tsp
- nutmeg - 1/8 tsp
- heavy cream - 1/4 c.
- Caramel Coating
- sugar - 1/2 c.
- water - 1/4 c.
Pate A Choux Dough:
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
- Add the butter and water to a small saucepan.
- Bring to a boil while sifting the flour, salt, and sugar together.
- Dump in the dry ingredients all at once and take the pan off of the heat.
- Stir with a wooden spoon until completely incorporated and the dough pulls away from the sides of the pan making a single ball of dough.
- Dump the dough into a standing mixture and mix on medium-low until it is no longer hot but still warm. Begin adding your eggs one at a time. You have put in enough eggs when the batter is silky and has a texture in between firm and runny. The number of eggs you need can depend on the weather or seasons and that is why I said 4-5 eggs. The dough will still be slightly firm but pipeable. If you aren't sure what this should look like, it is helpful to watch a Youtube video to be able to see the actual texture.
- Get out your baking tray and cover with parchment paper. Fill a small oven-proof container with about two inches of water and place in the middle. This will allow more steam to fill the oven and make the dough puff and hollow out better.
- Assemble your piping bag, using a #5 round tip if possible. Pipe 1 1/2 inch rounds onto the parchment paper. You can dip your finger in the water in the middle and smooth out the tops of the dough for a smoother-looking puff.
- Whatever you do....DO NOT open the oven door while these are baking!!! It could result in a flat and dense puff.
- Bake for 10-15 minutes or until nice and browned.
- Reduce the heat to 350 and bake for another 10 minutes. It may look like they are going to over-bake but I promise they will be nice and crunchy but not burnt by the end of the bake!
- After they are done baking, turn off the oven and let them sit in the oven for 10 more minutes before removing.
Apple Pie Filling:
- Peel and dice the apples.
- Add the cinnamon, agave, salt, cloves, and nutmeg to the apples and toss to combine. Put this in the fridge for at least 30 minutes if possible (but not necessary if you are short on time).
- After 30 minutes, remove them from the freezer and pour the mixture into a medium-sized sauce pan.
- Cook on medium until the apples are soft and the liquid is thick.
- Transfer to a food processor and process until it is a thick paste-like mix.
- Add the heavy cream to the mixture and stir to combine.
- This is a good time to fill the Pata a Choux puffs. Take a long piping tip (but make sure it is wide enough for small chunks of apple to pass through as well) and assemble a piping bag. Poke a hole into the puff and fill the puff with the mixture until it is full. Set aside.
- Pour the sugar into a small saucepan.
- Gently pour the water over the sugar, making sure not to splash it or stir it. If you get granules onto the sides of the pan, take a pastry brush, dip it into a little bit of water, and brush down the sides of the pan. If you have stray granules, it can make your whole caramel gritty.
- Again DO NOT STIR the mixture. Turn the heat onto medium-high and allow it to boil gently until it has reached 320 degrees F on a candy thermometer and is a nice medium-light amber color.
- Now, you can take it off the stove and swirl the mixture around in the pan to evenly distribute the cooked caramel.
- Dip your prepared puffs into the caramel and pile them on top of each other to make a little tower (or a big oen if you want!).
- If the caramel starts to go hard, just put it back on the stove and turn it on low and it will heat back up and soften.
- Show if off to all of your friends and enjoy!