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posted: 1/18/2012 6:00 AM

Laura's Sticky Toffee Pudding Apple Pie

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Pie Crust

1½ cups of flour

¼ teaspoon baking powder

½ teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon sugar

¼ cup cold butter cut in small pieces

½ cup of refrigerated shortening

Apple Filling

5 medium to large Michigan Cortland, Ida Red apples, peeled, thinly sliced, diced

1 cup brown sugar

3 tablespoons flour

4 tablespoons melted butter

2 teaspoons cinnamon

1 teaspoon lemon juice

¼ teaspoon salt

¾ cup homemade caramel (see related recipe)

Sticky Toffee Pudding Filling

½ cup praline pecans (see note)

1 stick butter, softened

½ cup brown sugar

2 tablespoons heavy cream

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 egg, beaten

½ cup self-rising flour

Crumb topping

¾ cup of flour

1 cup sugar

¼ teaspoon salt

1 stick butter, softened

For the crust: Mix all the crust ingredients in stand mixer on medium speed swiftly until crust appears "pea-like." Carefully sprinkle water in crust mix until it starts to become moistened and gathers together. Pat into a disc, wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. Roll out on to floured surface and place into a deep, 9-inch pie plate. Crimp crust and freeze until ready to use.

For the apple filling: Cook all filling ingredients (except caramel) in large pan on medium heat until cooked halfway. Stir in ¾ cup homemade caramel until melted.

For the sticky toffee pudding filling: Mix all the filling ingredients just until blended.

For the crumb topping: Mix together all crumb topping ingredients by hand or a pastry blender until fine and crumbly.

To assemble: Heat oven to 400 degrees.

Spread sticky toffee pudding mixture on bottom of crust. Put apple mixture over pudding mixture. Sprinkle with crumb topping. Bake 1 hour or until knife easily slides into center of pie with no resistance. If pie becomes too brown before done, turn down oven to 350 degrees to finish baking and cover with foil completely.

Top with a generous amount of homemade caramel and praline pecans.

Serves eight.

Cook's note: For the pecans: Heat 2 tablespoons butter in small pan on medium-low heat until melted. Add 1 cup chopped pecans and 2 tablespoons brown sugar and stir until you start smelling the nuts roasting. Take off heat and cool. Crumble.

Linda Hundt, DeWitt, Mich., Crisco Innovation Best of Show, Professional category, 2011 American Pie Council Crisco® National Pie Championships

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