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Caramel Apple Pie Bars

I’d like to do something a bit different today. Today is a Friday, which is different from a Thursday or a Saturday or a birthday or an unbirthday, so of course things would be different to begin with. But today will be a different-in-a-meeting-new-friends-kind-of-way day, which is our favorite kind of day. And I’d like you to meet a friend of mine. You might have heard of him before.

Why don’t you say hello to our friends, Pooh?

“Hello to our friends,” said Pooh.

“Thank you Pooh,” I said.

So this is Pooh. Also known in the 100 Acre Woods (where he’s from–Pooh, that is) as Winnie-ther-Pooh–or at least that’s what Christopher Robin calls him. And Christopher Robin is usually not wrong about these sorts of things, except on every other Thursday, and sometimes when it’s his unbirthday.

“What sorts of things are we talking about?” a growly bear voice said.

“About you liking honey, for instance,” I said.

“Oh,” Pooh replied. “I thought we were. I just wanted to make sure.”

“That’s a very good thing to do,” I said.

“And well–if you don’t mind my asking–what other sorts of things do I like?”

“What about these caramel apple pie bars?” I asked, pointing at the picture you just saw. “What do you think of them?”

****
Well, if you'd like to find out, I don't blame you. To find out what happens to Pooh and the great caramel apple pie bar recipe, visit my blog (and Pooh, too--he loves visitors, and I'm sure he'd love to have you) and check out the recipe, stories, and photos. (Part of the "Lit, Wit, and an Oven Mitt" story series.)
***


Caramel Apple Pie Bars
Ingredients:
  • For crust:
  • 1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
  • 6 tablespoons butter or margarine, melted
  • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • For cheesecake filling:
  • 1 (8 oz.) package cream cheese, softened
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • For apple layer:
  • 1 large apple (any variety according to your preference–I used Fuji), diced
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • For streusel:
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 5 tablespoons butter, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup quick-cooking oats
  • 3 tablespoons chopped nuts, any variety
  • 1/3 cup caramel dessert topping

Directions:

  1. To make crust: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a large bowl, combine graham cracker crumbs, 6 tablespoons melted butter or margarine, 1/3 cup white sugar, and 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon. (At this point, feel free to leave your mixing bowl unwashed–why do more dishes when you can avoid it? Save water, hassle, and a whale–set it aside for mixing the streusel!) Press into a lightly greased 9×9-inch baking pan. Bake in preheated oven for 6 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside to cool while making cheesecake filling and streusel.
  2. To make cheesecake filling: In a medium bowl, cream together cream cheese and 1/4 cup white sugar until smooth and fluffy. Add egg and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract; beat together until smooth. Spread over warm crust.
  3. To make apple layer: Combine apples, 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, and 1 tablespoon brown sugar. Sprinkle diced apples evenly over cheesecake layer.
  4. To make streusel: In the same large bowl as you used to make the crust, combine flour, 1/2 cup brown sugar, oats, and nuts. Cut in the 5 tablespoons butter and mix until you get a lumpy, coarse meal. Sprinkle over the apple layer.
  5. Bake bars in preheated oven for 22-27 minutes, until golden brown. Pour caramel over warm bars. Allow your bars to cool completely before cutting into them.
  6. Serve to the hungry Pooh bear waiting for you at home (whoever that might be!). (“That’s a very good idea,” Pooh said to me when he read this.)

Comments

( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
marmaladeginger
Nov. 11th, 2012 06:41 am (UTC)
Oh heaven.........I want!! Yum!
bubblebubba
Nov. 12th, 2012 04:32 pm (UTC)
Heh, thanks!
xo_kizzy_xo
Nov. 11th, 2012 01:14 pm (UTC)
:adding to Memories: Ooh, and I was just thinking of making something along this idea for Thanksgiving! Thank you!
bubblebubba
Nov. 12th, 2012 04:32 pm (UTC)
And you should totally go with your gut instinct--you're very welcome, hope you enjoy!
brother_dour
Nov. 11th, 2012 06:03 pm (UTC)
I soooo read that in Sebastian Cabot's and Sterling Holloway's voices!
bubblebubba
Nov. 12th, 2012 04:31 pm (UTC)
Your comment just made my day--thank you! I hope you got a chance to finish the rest of the story--I think you would really enjoy it :) I'm going to have to do some reading aloud of my own work in the future, I'd love to have a Sebastian Cabot voice! On that note, you might enjoy this tidbit about Jim Cummings (read #3--it's so completely heartwarming!). Hope it makes your day as bright as your comment made mine!
im_weird_people
Nov. 12th, 2012 05:16 pm (UTC)
I.... totally did too.
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )

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