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Healthy Plate: A healthier take on classic apple pie

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Phyllo dough helps give an all-American apple pie a lighter twist. (AP Photo/Matthew Mead)

By ALISON LADMAN

For The Associated Press

First published Jun 20 2012 10:59AM
Updated Jun 20, 2012 05:52PM

As all-American desserts go, it’s hard to beat apple pie, especially for the Fourth of July.

But celebrating a big holiday shouldn’t involve making a big healthy-eating sacrifice. So in honor of our nation’s independence, we created an apple dessert that lets us have our pie and our healthy habits, too.

With pie, the real dietary downfall is the crust, which typically is laden with butter or shortening. So we decided to remake the classic using phyllo dough, the papery thin sheets of dough used to make baklava. Usually, it is brushed with melted butter to help it bake into thin layers. For ease and less fat, we went with a few quick mists of cooking spray instead.

We filled the phyllo sheets with sautéed apples and then rolled them into little cigars. You could just as easily fold them into triangles. To do this, just place the filling at one end, then fold like a flag.

One thing about working with phyllo dough: If you let it dry out, it tears easily. So be sure to take out just the amount you need to work with at any given moment. To keep the rest moist, cover with plastic wrap, then a damp, but not wet, kitchen towel. Any phyllo you don’t need should be tightly wrapped in plastic wrap, then placed in a zip-close bag and refrigerated.

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