Last night I treat myself to a little farewell to summer indulgence. I thought I would share the recipes I made: Mini Apple Tarts and Ginger Basil Lemonade.
Mini Apple Tarts
– 1 package pre-made pie crust (comes with 2 crusts)
– 4-5 small-medium apples of your choice (I used Fuji)
– 1/4 cup brown sugar
– 2 Tbsp flour
– 2 tsp (or to taste) apple pie spice or cinnamon
– a dash of vanilla extract (1/4 tsp maybe?)
- Peel, core, and cut apples into small cubes (smaller than you would for a regular pie 1/4 to 1/2 in).
- Throw into a bowl along with brown sugar, flour, spices, and vanilla. Stir with your fingers until coated. Set aside. Lick fingers. Yum.
- Roll out pie crusts on flat surface, roll a little thinner (no right or wrong here, IMO). I have used a wine bottle, but if you have a rolling pin, that’s an obvious choice.
- Using some item with a circle about 4″ across (I had a big mug that was just about right), cut out 8 circles from the two crusts.
- Spray muffin tin with nonstick spray, tuck a circle of crust into each of the cups, stretching gently as needed so a little bit sticks above the rim and it is tucked well into the cup shape.
- Spoon some of the apples into each cup. I fill right to the rim plus a little bit.
- Take the remains of the dough, mush together, and re-roll out. Fun, it’s like Play-Dough!
- Slice into thin strips (1/4″ wide?), and criss-cross six across the top of each tart, pinching it along the edges to connect to the bottom crust.
- Brush tops with a little melted butter, if you so desire.
- Place in a pre-heated 425 degree oven for 18 minutes.
- Let cool in muffin pan, remove carefully, and enjoy with Ginger Basil Lemonade!!
Ginger Basil Lemonade
*How to make Basil Lemonade:
– 6-7 medium-large lemons (or twice as many small ones)
– 3/4 cup sugar
– 2 cups water
– 1 cup fresh basil leaves
- Make basil simple-sugar by putting sugar and water into sauce pan, bring to a boil, stirring occasionally until sugar dissolves. (BTW, this can be done with any herb of choice. Rosemary and lavender are also popular choices, and would go great in this drink)
- Remove from heat, throw basil leaves in and stir gently. Let sit until it comes to room temperature. You can muddle the leaves gently if you want stronger basil flavor.
- Meanwhile, juice lemons and add to a pitcher.
- Add basil simple sugar to pitcher
- Add cold water to taste
- For a virgin version, add a little fresh ginger at the same stage as the basil, making a ginger-basil simple sugar.
Fill tall glass halfway with ice, fill most of the way with basil lemonade, add a shot of Yazi ginger vodka, stir and enjoy.
I enjoyed this on the back deck by candlelight, watching the bright moon and stars on what is close to one of the last “warm” nights we will have in Seattle this summer.