Apple Confit with Salted Caramel Sauce, Oat Crisp and Brown Butter Brown Sugar Ice Cream

The other weekend I went to Yosemite with my dad. A few days before that I made an apple dessert.

Yosemite was maybe 3 or 4 hours away. We met up after he got off work on a friday and then we made our way down. By the time we got down there, we made it too one stop before it got dark. Hetch Hetchy was our first stop. A reservoir in park of the park. The water level was really low and the we were their at the wrong time of year for waterfalls. It was still gorgeous scenery. We then went to the town of Fish Camp to stay the night in a cabin. Silly town name. Then the next day was to Mono Lake which I had wanted to visited to most. I have seen photos of it online for years and it always looked like a strange and majestic place. It lived up to the photos. Like the inside of a cave had been transported to a lake in the middle of the valley. I will post those photos next, way too many for one post. Breakfast was next at the infamous Mobil gas station. I had never heard of it before but the giant gas station/deli/diner is apparently pretty popular.

The rest of the stops were all places I don't really remember their names. It was all great big trees, rocks, valleys and lakes that began to blur together after a wife. Another night was spent on the other side of Yosemite in a town that was so small we missed it driving by the first time. It was a nice weekend trip, a nice to be out of St Helena for a while.

The dessert was something I made just well, just to do something. A bit more technical than a simple cake or cookies i would normally make, but still something I could achieve. The confit had to sit over night so the next day I was going to do photos. And I got one I liked, kinda. The light was just off and I still am not all situated with all my stuff since moving. The light in the kitchen here is just not the same as my old place, I think I might try to make a set up in the garage to shoot. More room and hopefully that moody diffused light I am always searching for. Anyways the taste was there so it may seem like a few steps for this recipe, but they are all quite easy.

apple confit

100g butter, melted

150g (1/2 cup) sugar

1 vanilla bean, seeds scraped

80ml (1/3 cup) brandy

80ml (1/3 cup) lemon juice

zest of 1 lemon

10 small granny smith apples


Oven 350F. Grease a 9x4 inch loaf pan then line with parchment paper.

Place 75g of the sugar in a saucepan. Cook over medium heat until sugar melts and turns light caramel color. Pour into tin.

Combine butter, remaining sugar, vanilla, brandy, lemon juice and zest in a large bowl. 

Peel all the apples and cut off flesh into chunks. Using a mandolin, thinly slice all of the apples. Place into the large and toss to combine. Layer the apples in the tin, in overlapping even layers. Cover the top with parchment paper then wrap in foil.

Bake for 30 minutes. Turn oven down to 300F, bake for another 30 minutes. Turn oven down to 250F, remove foil and parchment from top and bake for an additional 1 1/2 hours.

Let cool to room temperature. Wrap a piece of cardboard in plastic or a loaf tin of the same size and place onto of apples. Weigh down with a brick or canned foods to compress it down. With weights, let cool in fridge overnight. 

brown butter brown sugar ice cream

300g butter, room temperature

580ml (2 1/3 cup) whole milk

2 tbsp honey

6 egg yolks

150g (2/3 cup) dark brown sugar


Heat butter in a saucepan until brown and nutty. Take off heat then slowly pour in 500ml of milk. Let cool to room temperature then cool in fridge until butter is solidified. 

Remove and discard butter solids, strain through a chinois. Measure to make sure it is at 500ml. If not, use the remaining milk to bring up to 500ml.

Combine yolks and brown sugar in a bowl and whisk until pale and thick.

Place milk with honey in saucepan and bring up to a simmer.  Temper a ladle full into the eggs and then add back to milk mixture. Cook for about 8 minutes, stirring constantly over low/medium heat, until it coats the back of a spoon.

Strain through a chinois and then let cool in fridge for a few hours until completely chilled.

Churn through ice cream maker then let freeze for a few hours.

oat crisp

45g (1/2 cup) rolled oats

110g (1/2 cup) dark brown sugar

35g (1/2 cup) breadcrumbs

1/8 tsp baking powder

1/8 tsp nutmeg

1/4 tsp cinnamon

1 egg white


Oven 350F. Line a baking sheet with a silpat or parchment paper.

Process half the oats with the sugar and bread crumbs in a food processor. Add in the butter, spices, baking powder and egg white until just combined. Pour into a bowl and fold in the remaining oats.

Place on baking sheet and spread into a thin even layer with an offset.

Bake until golden brown, about 15 minutes. Let cool complete then cut or break into pieces.

salted caramel

110g (1/2 cup) sugar

1/4 cup water

160ml (2/3 cup) heavy cream

30g salted butter, chopped


Place sugar and water in a sauce pan, whisk to combine. Cook until it is a deep caramel color. Meanwhile heat the cream until warm, about 1 minute in the microwave. Remove sugar from heat then slowly whisk the cream in, stirring constantly. If it starts to separate, place over low heat and whisk until combined. Add in butter in pieces, stirring until combined. Let cool to room temperature.


all recipes from or based off an Andrew McConnell recipe

Name *