This could just be my favorite summer dessert. I get two for one… the crostata along with a delicious apple syrup that I can reheat and serve over ice cream. This is a forgiving rustic dessert that doesn’t need to look neat or pretty, as the taste speaks for itself. The oats-and-brown-sugar crumble that finishes off the crostata adds a subtle crunch to each bite. (I put the crostata out of my kids’ reach because they have a tendency to pick off all of the crumble!)
serves 12; PREP time: Active: 30 min.; TOTAL: 1 hour, 30 min.
2 to 2 ½ cups of unbleached self-rising flour
1 whole egg, plus 1 egg yolk
1 cup sugar
½ cup unsalted butter
1 to 2 tablespoons 2% or whole milk
Extra flour, for dusting
8-10 apples (I prefer Gala or Fuji), sliced
¾ cup light brown sugar
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 tablespoon cinnamon
Juice of 1 lemon
1 cup confectionary dulce de leche
1 cup oats
1/4 cup light brown sugar
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
Preheat oven to 350°. Put all of the dough ingredients into a food processor and pulse until it forms pea-like balls. Flour both hands and pour dough onto a kneading surface. Gradually incorporate all of the ingredients by rolling, pushing and folding it over just until moist. Add more flour or drops of milk, as needed, to reach the right consistency. Lightly flour top of the dough and form it into a roundish shape; place on a baking tray. Refrigerate for ½ an hour to set. Dough can be used immediately or wrapped in plastic wrap and stored in the refrigerator for 1 day.
To make the apple filling, in a large saucepan over medium heat, combine apples, brown sugar, cinnamon and lemon juice until apples become soft and caramelized. In a food processor, add oats, brown sugar and melted butter, and pulse until it creates a crumble topping.
Roll out dough to ¼ inch thick circle, making sure it is even. Move to a lightly greased baking pan and spread confectionary dulce de leche on the bottom of the crostata, leaving enough of an edge to fold over. With a slotted spoon, add apple filling, making sure to first drain the juices and fold over the edges, creating a rustic package (this does not have to be symmetrical). Reserve the remaining apple juices for reheating at a later time and serving over vanilla ice cream. Add crumble topping. Bake 25 to 30 minutes until golden brown. Allow to cool completely.