Do not be alarmed. You are not traveled back in time to September. You have, indeed, seen these turnovers before.
But, you see, I was remiss in my reporting from the apple deluge. During my apple turnover project I made not one, but three kinds of apple turnovers. One type, with ginger and cranberry, you’ve already read about, and the other type (my attempt to make a savory, chutney-like apple filling) is not worth writing about here.
But the third type was actually my favorite – apple turnovers with a cheddar crust – and it would be a mighty shame if I didn’t post the recipe here. It was only last week, when my friend Alice and I were discussing the virtues of cheddar pie crust that I realized I had completely forgotten to put it up.
Perhaps this timing is fortuitous – after all, we’re in the thick of holiday season, and these would be really perfect for a light after-Thanksgiving dessert. If you’ve already committed to pumpkin pie, never fear – these would do very nicely at brunch during your leisurely four day weekend.
Even if you don’t make these turnovers, I hope this recipe inspires others to try cheddar pie crust in their holiday baking, because it truly is an amazing thing. It takes what we usually associate with a cheese plate – cheddar served with a slice of apple – and puts it in a pie plate. Crispy and flaky, the crust gets a mellow bite from the cheddar cheese that makes it much more interesting that normal pie crust. Use it in your next apple pie – you may just not go back your old apple pie crust.
Note: as with apple cranberry and ginger turnovers, the filling recipe is a bit of an approximation (the crust is quite precise). You may have some filling left over – and you should definitely taste the filling to see if any of the spices need adjusting.
Apple Turnovers With A Cheddar Crust
Makes approximately 32 turnovers
Adapted From Martha Stewart
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
14 tablespoons (1 3/4 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
4 ounces white cheddar cheese, coarsely grated (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 cup ice water
Four medium sized tart apples (I used Sun Crisps. At least, I think that’s what they were. But Granny Smiths or Galas would work nicely as well), peeled, cored, and cut int a 1/4 inch dice – around 3 cups
1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp allspice
2 tbs cream mixed with 2 tbs water
For the crust: toss the cheese with a little flour – this will make it easier to incorporate with the dry ingredients. Whisk together flour, salt and sugar in a large bowl. Mix in the cheese with a spoon or your fingers, until the individual bits of cheese are coated in the flour mixture and everything is combined. Place the flour and cheese mixture in the freezer for 15 minutes. Place the butter in the freezer for 15 minutes as well – you want all your crust ingredients to be very cold.
Remove flour mixture and butter from the freezer. Cut the butter into the flour mixture using a pastry cutter, a fork, or your fingers, until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in the ice water with a wooden spoon or spatula until a rough dough is formed. You don’t want to overwork the dough – handle it as little as possible. Turn out into a lightly floured work surface and divide in two with a knife or bench scraper. Flatten into disks and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate at least one hour.
Preheat oven to 350F.
While the dough is chilling, mix together the filling ingredients in a small bowl.
Remove one disk of dough from refrigerator. Unwrap dough and place on a cleanly floured work surface. Roll dough into a large circle, until dough is 1/8 inch thick. Using a four-inch biscuit cutter (or, in my case, tart pan) cut out circles of dough. Gather scraps into a ball, re-roll to 1/8 thickness, and cut out more circles of dough.
Place a little filling (1 to 2 teaspoons) in each disk of the dough – place it off center, but leave a 1/2 inch border. Fold the other side of dough over the filling and line up edges. Crimp edges of the turnover with a fork. Remove to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Repeat with other dough circles. When finished with the first disk of dough, remove the second disk from the refrigerator and repeat the rolling/filling/folding/crimping process.
Before baking, lightly brush turnovers with glaze. Bake for 25 to 35 minutes, until lightly browned.