Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Candy Apple Trifle

Although we haven't been experiencing "fall-like" temperatures (90 degrees when I made this), I still found myself in the mood for some sort of apple dessert last Saturday. I was looking for an alternative to apple pie. I decided on a trifle although I have never made an apple trifle.

I will try to give you the recipe as accurately as I can, but if you have been following any of my recipes you will know that I make them up as I go along. I also want to encourage you to trust your instincts and have fun experimenting with these recipes.

  • 6 Green Apples
  • Brown sugar
  • Bourbon (optional)
  • 2 Tablespoons of butter
  • Apple cake or Apple cider doughnuts
  • 2 pints of heavy whipping cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 Candy Apple
Base layer:
I really wanted to use fresh apple cider doughnuts, but due to time constraints, I was unable to go to the nearest orchard. Instead, I used an apple cake which turned out to be a delicious substitution. You can either make this from scratch, box or pick one up at the market.
Cut up whatever you decided on for the layer and divide in half. Layer the bottom of the trifle dish with one half of the cake.

Focal Layer:
This is where the apples come in. I really didn't know what I wanted to do to the apples. I just kept thinking about what goes into an apple pie. Do whatever you want. Just keep in mind the moisture from the apples when cooking. Do not add too much additional moisture.
How I cooked the apples...
In a large skillet I sauteed about 6 green apples, sliced and peeled. I chose green because of their tartness. The cake and whipped cream layer were going to be sweet enough.

First add about 2 tablespoons  of butter to a large skillet and about 2 tablespoons of brown sugar (I really just added whatever amount I felt like. Remember...I wing it). I also added bourbon because I already had the bottle out :-), but you don't have to. Cook down and add the apples stirring frequently until they look like they would if they were inside of an apple pie.
Cool slightly before you add to the trifle.

Mortar Layer:
I went with homemade whipped cream this time. Usually I cheat and use cool whip. I honestly do not think I will ever go back to store bought. The consistency and flavor is so much better when you whip it yourself and it is so simple to do.

Easy Homemade Whipped Cream:

  • 2 pints of heavy whipping cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar (vary depending on how sweet you want it to be)
Whip the mixture with an electric hand mixer until raised peaks form in it and hold their shape. It should take about four minutes (or much longer if using a manual hand mixer or whisk).Add the whipped cream layer and then repeat all 3 layers finishing with a top layer of whipped cream.

As a garnish I sliced a caramel candy apple and placed it around the top. You could make them yourself, but if your sole purpose is for this trifle then just pick one up at the orchard when you get your apples. 

I am really looking forward to making this trifle again on a crisp fall day after a trip to the local orchard where I can pick the apples, grab some freshly dipped caramel apples and try out the fresh apple cider doughnuts as the base layer. If you make it there before I do, leave a comment below and let me know how it tasted! 


  1. This looks amazing!! Although I generally dislike cooking I do love making yummy desserts! I will have to try this one out for sure.

  2. Ryann, this sounds amaaaazing. What a delicious idea to use apple cider donuts and slivers of candied apple as a garnish. Also, I love that if one wanted to, one could pick up most of these ingredients at their local orchard or farm, as you suggested. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that you will concoct an equally delicious pumpkin trifle. Because in all honesty, I'm smitten for anything pumpkin. Thanks for sharing!

  3. I think I will be working on the pumpkin trifle this weekend. Stay tuned...

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