Some aunts bake brownies. But other aunts, like my Aunt Marion, bake brownies and add a caramel ribbon in the centre. In other words, she was a woman after my own heart.
Aunt Marion was a baker extraordinaire. She was the one who first introduced me to Rice Krispies Golf Balls and a host of other desserts, squares and sweets.
I remember visiting once and she made Paper Bag Apple Pie. Naturally, I was mystified. How was it that the bag didn’t burn? And what was the point of the bag? (Truthfully, I'm not sure there is a point. Cakers just like doing weird things with their food.)
Aunt Marion passed away recently. To salute her and all the other caramel ribbon aunts, I’m posting this recipe. Here’s hoping there’s a big bake table waiting for them – and us – on the other side.
3 or 4 large baking apples
½ cup sugar
2 tablespoons flour
½ teaspoon nutmeg (see note)
2 tablespoons lemon juice
½ cup sugar
½ cup flour
½ cup butter
Heat over to 425°. Prepare apples by paring, coring and slicing. Combine ½ cup sugar, 2 tablespoons flour and nutmeg and sprinkle over apples. Toss to coat well and spoon into a pastry shell. Drizzle with lemon juice. Combine ½ cup sugar and ½ cup flour for topping in small bowl and cut in the butter. Sprinkle this topping over the apples to cover the top. Slide the pie into a heavy paper bag, large enough to cover pie loosely. Fold the open end over twice and fasten with paper clips. Place on a large cookie sheet for easy handling. Bake for 1 hour. Split bag open and remove the pie. Cool on wire rack.
Note: I found the pie a little nutmeggy for my taste. If you prefer cinnamon, use that instead.