If you don’t have quite enough apples for a pie you can make this quick and delish apple pan dowdy. It sounds very old fashioned and I think it is just that: old school yummy. I believe the name comes from the messy way you create the final look; turning the crust under the hot fruit and baking again so that crust get finished as it soaks in the juices and your dessert becomes a bit more like an apple crisp than a pie. I believe my recipe came originally from a very old Betty Crocker cookbook. I have adapted it to make it gluten free. Its one of my favorite quick fruit desserts for cold winter nights.
Dowdy means not very pretty, drab and this is a bit of a hot mess in its looks but the flavor is spicy, fruity and far more exciting than a plain apple pie. I think it has spoiled me from apple pie. Definitely worth a try.
I have made it with golden raisins, regular raisins or currents which are tiny raisins. All work great.
Please use a firm baking apple that will hold its shape for a decently long bake. I used yellow delicious this time. I have used a number of different baking apples for this; Rome, Braeburn work fine; just don’t use red delicious which is an eating only variety. Green granny smiths tend to be a bit too firm for this recipe while Empire apples get a bit too squishy and applesauce like. Most any other type of apple will do.
This might be my second favorite apple dessert; after my French apple tart that I make regularly; easy, fairly low sugar and oh so delightfully cinnamony and lemony at the same time.
Apple Pan Dowdy
1 c plus 2 Tbsp. brown rice flour mix (at bottom of recipe)
2 Tbsp. sweet rice flour
1 Tbps. granulated sugar
½ tsp xanthan gum
¼ tsp salt
6 Tbps. cold butter cut into 6 chunks
1 lg egg
2 tsp fresh orange or lemon juice
Butter the inside of a glass baking dish: I used a 9 inch glass pie pan.
Mix dry ingredients in bowl of stand electric mixer. Add butter and mix until crumbly and resembling coarse meal. Add egg and juice. Mix until it comes together into big chunks. Shape into a ball with your hands. Put it on a crust sized piece of wax paper (14 x 14 inches more or less), flatten the crust ball some; put on top of it another piece of wax paper and chill it all in your fridge 15-20 minutes while you prepare the filling.
1/3 cup golden or regular raisins
2 Tbsp. peach schnapps
5-6 large Golden Delicious apples
1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1/3 cup sugar
Heaping ½ tsp. cinnamon
1/8 tsp. nutmeg
Sprinkle ground cloves
1 tsp. lemon zest if you like
1 -2 tsp. softened butter
Directions: Put raisins in a small glass dish, add schnaps, microwave one minute on high. Let stand so the booze soaks into the raisins. Peel apples, cut in quarters, remove cores, cut each quarter into 4 or 5 slices. Place in a large mixing bowl, sprinkle with lemon juice. Mix the dry ingredients in a cup; pour over the slices, toss with a big spoon; sprinkle with lemon zest if desired.
Pour the apple mixture into the glass pie pan that you had rubbed with soft butter. Get out the crust and roll it out; just slightly bigger than the top of your baking dish. Lay it on top of the apple slices and tuck in the edges so nothing hangs down over the edge. Bake for 30 minutes in a 375 degree oven. Remove from oven, use a sharp knife to cut a cross hatch into the top (4 big cuts) so you end up with 9 pieces. Use a big serving spoon to gently tip up the crust and get it under some of the hot apples. Don’t worry if it breaks up further or looks like a mess. That’s part of its charm! Let bake 25 to 30 more minutes. The crust (whatever peeks out of the messy fruit pieces) should be very lightly browned and the apples are bubbling. Let it rest a bit; don’t serve boiling hot but warm will be awesome. Slice and top with a big dollop of vanilla ice cream, crème or yogurt if you like that sort of thing. We ate it with ice cream and then the next time I had some plain – just my favorite way to appreciate the flavor and texture of this spicy treat. Enjoy!
Brown Rice Flour Mix (same as King Arthur basic gf blend)
2 c brown rice flour
2/3 c potato starch – not potato flour!
1/3 c tapioca flour
The crust recipe is from Annalise Roberts great cookbook, GF Baking Classics, Second Edition.
2 thoughts on “Apple Pan Dowdy, a Really Delish Dessert”
A pan dowdy is a fun dessert! The best part is the syrup coated pieces that sink then float up and get caramelized and delicious! Thank you for reminding me of this lovely technique!
We love this dessert; having it again on Saturday, can’t wait!
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