This small batch recipe for Caramel Corn Apple Galette is combines two delicious Fall desserts into one! Made with a creamy caramel and freeze dried sweet corn custard, and simple cinnamon sugar Honeycrisp apple filling. Then baked in a light and flaky pie crust for a pretty, yet rustic, pie for two!
Caramel Corn Apple Galette
I love a good recipe mash-up and this Caramel Corn Apple Galette is the epitome of a mash-up! Think of buttery-sweet caramel corn brightened with fresh cinnamon-spiced apples. Then take the two and wrap them in the most light and flaky pie crust, and you have a Caramel Corn Apple Galette!
A galette is essentially a freeform pie, or as I like to call them, a rustic pie. And to be perfectly honest, making traditional pies scare me. I mean, the perfectly fluted edges and what to decorate the top with always send me to making a galette.
Caramel Corn Custard Filling
If you follow the blog, you know I am a fan of freeze dried fruit. I like to use it because it provides a robust flavor without adding extra moisture – which could alter the texture of the treat. For example, the Gluten Free Peach Cupcakes, Raspberry Sandwich Cookies, and in the Strawberry and Chocolate Cinnamon Rolls. And most recently, I discovered freeze dried sweet corn which I used in the most delicious Sweet Corn Panna Cotta.
And now that we are in the midst of Fall and all things caramel, apple, pumpkin, and spice, it only seemed fitting to take my new affinity for freeze dried sweet corn and make it into one of the most quintessential Fall treats – Caramel Corn. Yes, I realize the flavors in this recipe transcend from Fall to Summer, which makes the Caramel Corn Apple Galette a super versatile dessert.
To get the caramel corn flavor into the galette, a buttery and creamy custard filling is the perfect vehicle. The custard is not that dissimilar from a regular vanilla pudding, with a couple exceptions:
- We first caramelize light brown sugar – Brown sugar provides a richer caramel flavor and it is relatively easy to make homemade caramel.
- Flavor is added in the form of freeze dried sweet corn – The corn flavor is prominent and does not get lost with all of the other flavors in the galette.
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What You Need To Make Caramel Corn Apple Galette
- Fresh Apples – I used Honeycrisp apples because I like that they are sweet and tart, and they don’t turn to mush when baked. However, any apple you like to eat will work great.
- Lemon Juice – For the apple filling to keep the apples from turning brown and balance the sweetness.
- Granulated Sugar – Used in the pie dough and to sprinkle over the apples.
- Cinnamon – To sprinkle over the apples for another flavor note.
- All Purpose Flour
- Cornmeal – The cornmeal is optional. It adds a crunchy texture to the pie dough, and ties to the corn flavor in the custard filling.
- Salt – Flavor!
- White Vinegar – Vinegar inhibits the formation of gluten in the flour, which helps make the dough tender. Vinegar also helps the dough from oxidizing (turning gray!).
- Unsalted Butter – The butter must be COLD! The butter is what gives the dough flavor and makes it flaky. Bonus if the butter is frozen.
- Ice Water – We only need a little liquid in pie dough and it should be ice cold.
- Egg – The egg yolk is used in the custard filling. And the egg white is reserved to brush over the dough before to give it a golden crust when baked.
- Freeze Dried Sweet Corn – The key ingredient for the custard! Freeze dried sweet corn has an intense corn flavor which works great when imparting flavor without added texture. You can purchase it on Amazon, and you may be able to find it in a specialty or natural grocery.
- Milk – For the custard filling.
- Heavy Cream – For the custard filling.
- Corn Starch – Corn starch makes the custard thick and creamy.
- Light Brown Sugar – Brown sugar is what gives us the caramel flavor in the custard.
- Mixing Bowls
- Medium Heavy Bottom Saucepan – I recommend a heavy bottom saucepan to make the custard filling. A good pan distributes heat evenly, which is important especially when melting sugar to make caramel. I prefer All-Clad pans and they are a good investment, especially if you cook and bake a lot.
- Baking Sheet
How To Make A Flaky Pie Dough
You only need a few ingredients to make pie dough, and you probably already have these on hand. Each ingredient plays a role in making the pie dough for the Caramel Corn Apple Galette tender and flaky.
- Use all purpose flour – AP flour doesn’t have as much protein it it as bread flour, which yields a lighter dough when baked.
- A little salt and sugar for flavor – Both add flavor to the pie dough without being overwhelmingly salty or sweet.
- Don’t skip the vinegar – First, vinegar does not add a vinegar flavor to the dough. Vinegar prevents too much gluten from forming in the dough. This has two benefits:
- Makes the dough tender.
- Overworking dough causes gluten to develop. While you should aim to not overwork the dough, if the dough happens to be handled a little more than needed, the vinegar should help keep the dough lighter, and less chewy.
Cold is Key
- The butter MUST be cold – Butter contains moisture and when that moisture is heated, it creates steam. The steam is what creates the flaky layers in the dough. Frozen butter is a bonus and is what I use to make all of my pie dough and Homemade Buttermilk Biscuits. I keep sticks of butter in the freezer for this very reason.
- Grate the butter – I recommend using a box grater to grate the butter, just like you would cheese. Grating the butter means less handling of the butter, which means the butter won’t heat up and potentially melt into the dough. In addition, the small pieces of grated butter are easier to distribute evenly in the dough.
- Use ice cold water – We work hard to keep the butter cold, and we want to make sure any liquid for the dough is just as cold. I like to fill a liquid measuring cup or glass with water and ice cubes and measure from there.
- Chill the pie dough – The pie dough needs time in the refrigerator for a few reasons:
- It needs time to relax after being mixed and handled.
- All of the flavors develop when it has time to sit and chill.
- It gives the dough time to hydrate.
Tips For Making Caramel Corn Apple Galette
Galette Pie Dough Tips
We talk about about to make a flaky pie dough above, and below are a couple more tips for making the galette dough.
- Shape the dough into a disc before chilling – This disc shape makes it easier to roll the dough into a circle.
- Don’t worry about perfection – Galette’s are intentionally a little rustic and you don’t need to fret too much about making a perfect circle.
- Roll in the middle and rotate – I find rolling out dough all the way to the edges may not create an even layer of dough. In contrast, if you roll the dough primarily in the middle, then rotate it, you will naturally roll out the edges. Roll and rotate a few times until you get the 8-inch circle.
Caramel Custard Filling Tips
- Grind the freeze dried corn to a powder – Grinding the corn allows more flavor to release into the custard. As opposed to leaving the kernels whole.
- Use any milk – Because we use heavy cream, cornstarch, and an egg yolk, the custard will be thick and creamy. The milk is primarily used thin out the custard slightly since we are baking it. With that, any milk will work. I have even used non-dairy milk.
- Keep an eye on the brown sugar while it is heating – Sugar can burn very quickly, and it usually happens when you step away from it! It won’t take too long for it to caramelize and I recommend watching it the whole time.
- Whisk, whisk, whisk! – When warm liquid is added to the egg yolk mixture, it runs the risk of turning the egg yolk into scrambled eggs. Whisking constantly during this step is called ‘tempering’ the egg yolk, which still allows the yolk to be heated without scrambling it. Whisking also keeps the custard from sticking to the bottom of the pan.
- Strain the custard – This will remove the corn pulp from the custard.
Apple Filling Tips
- Use apples you like to eat – I typically use Honeycrisp apples for baking. Like in the Caramel Apple Banana Bread, or the Easy Apple Biscoff Crisp. I like Honeycrisp apples because they are sweet and tart and they keep a bit of texture when baked. However, any apple would be great and I always recommend using one that you like to eat.
- Cut the apples into any shape you like – I like the chunky cubes of apples, but feel free to slice the apples.
Common Questions For Making Caramel Corn Apple Galette
While I have not tested it, I think doubling the recipe would be fine! If you double the recipe, you could make on large galette, two 6-inch galettes, or even 4 to 6 mini galettes.
You do not, but then you wouldn’t be making a Caramel Corn Apple Galette! I do have a recipe for a simple almond cream that I used in the Cherry Almond Galette. Or you could make a vanilla pastry cream like in the Peach Kuchen.
You can, but it may take a little more time. You can cut the kernels off the cob and allow them to steep in the milk for about 20 to 30 minutes to impart the corn flavor.
I like to bake with Honeycrisp because they stay firm when baked and they aren’t as tart as Granny Smith apples. With that, I recommend baking with an apple you like to eat!
Chances are, the pie dough won’t be light and flaky if the butter isn’t cold. It may result in a more dense pie dough.
Because of the custard filling, I recommend covering and refrigerating any leftovers. You can re-heat the galette in oven for a few minutes, or in the microwave it you are pressed for time.
More Fall Dessert Recipes
- Pumpkin Spice Whoopie Pies
- Cinnamon Rolls with Maple Syrup Glaze
- Small Batch Cinnamon Swirl Pumpkin Bread
- Apple Pumpkin Streusel Muffins
- Soft Apple Cookies With Caramel Icing
Caramel Corn Apple Galette
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon cornmeal - optional
- 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon white distilled vinegar
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold - cut into cubes, or grate the butter
- 2 to 4 tablespoons ice water
- 1 egg white, beaten - for brushing crust
- Cinnamon Sugar - for topping crust
Caramel Corn Custard
- 1/3 cup freeze dried sweet corn, ground to powder
- 1/2 cup milk, any kind
- 1 large egg yolk
- 1 and 1/2 tablespoons corn starch
- 1/4 cup light brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1 and 1/2 cups apples, cut into cubes or slices - about 1 and 1/2 large apples
- 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- In a medium mixing bowl, add the flour, cornmeal (if using), sugar, salt, and butter. Begin to 'cut' in the butter with a pastry cutter or your fingers until the butter is about the size of peas. Tip – You an also grate the cold butter and gently stir into the flour. I find grating the butter to be easier and it distributes more evenly into the flour.
- In a liquid measuring cup, add 2 tablespoons of the ice water and vinegar. Add to the dough and stir with your fingers or a fork until you have a rough dough. If the dough still seems too dry, add more ice water – 1 teaspoon at a time. Note – The dough is supposed to be rough and scrappy. You will know you have added enough water when you squeeze some of the dough in your hand and it holds together.
- Pour the dough onto a sheet of plastic wrap and form into a ball, then flatten into a small disc. Wrap tightly and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
Caramel Corn Custard
- In a food processor or blender, pulse the freeze-dried sweet corn to a powder.
- In a medium mixing bowl, add the milk, egg yolk, and cornstarch. Whisk together until smooth and creamy, and the cornstarch has been dissolved. Stir in the sweet corn powder and set aside. Note – Reserve the egg white for brushing the dough before baking.
- In a medium heavy bottom saucepan, add the brown sugar and butter. Heat over medium heat until the sugar has melted and starts to bubble. Allow the sugar to caramelize for about 1 to 2 minutes. Add the heavy cream to the sugar and stir with a spatula or whisk until the sugar has dissolved into the cream.
- Remove the sugar cream from the heat and very carefully, drizzle about half of it into the cornstarch mixture while whisking constantly. Transfer the tempered mixture back into the saucepan and return the cream to medium heat. Continue to whisk the custard and cook until it starts to thicken and bubble – about 3 to 5 minutes.
- Strain the custard through a fine mesh strainer set over a medium bowl. Cover with a piece of plastic wrap directly touching the top of the custard. This will keep a skin from forming. Cool the custard slightly at room temperature, then refrigerate until ready to use.
- Cube or slice the apples and transfer to a mixing bowl. Toss the apples with the lemon juice, cinnamon, and sugar. Set aside until ready to use.
- Baking the Galette – Preheat the oven to 375F degrees and adjust the oven rack to the middle position. Line a baking sheet with a piece of parchment paper.
- Remove the cooled chilled pie crust from the refrigerator and lightly flour your work surface. Roll the dough into a rough 8-inch circle. Transfer the dough to the prepared baking sheet.
- Dollop the caramel corn custard onto the middle of the dough – Leaving at least a 2-inch border of dough. Next, pile the prepared apples on top of the cream. It may seem like a lot of apples, but they will bake down.
- Fold up the edges of the dough around the apples and custard. The filling will not be fully covered by dough – which is what we want.
- Mix the reserved egg white with a couple splashes of water and brush the edges of the dough. Then, sprinkle the cinnamon sugar over the top of the galette.
- Bake the galette for 35 – 40 minutes, or until the crust is a golden brown. Let cool before serving. Top with your favorite ice cream or whipped cream and Enjoy!