This wonderful dessert is a German recipe that resembles the American recipe for Apple Brown Betty. Actually it's Apple Brown Betty on flavor steroids.
In addition to apples, this dessert contains dark rum soaked dried currants and sports the stronger flavor of pumpernickel bread crumbs over the plain white.
There are a few steps in prepping this dessert. However, once you have the crumbs and the apples prepared, it's a cinch to come together. Apple Beggar is best served warm right out of the baking dish. When topped with vanilla ice cream, well, what can I say but wow. An absolutely perfect fall dessert.
Apple Beggar Dessert (Apfelbettelmann)
Prep Time: 45 minutes
Bake Time: 20 minutes
Yield: Serves 8
- 1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, divided
- 3/4 cup dried currants (red or black)
- 1/2 cup dark rum
- 2 cups pumpernickel bread crumbs*
- 1/2 cup roughly chopped raw almonds
- 1/4 cup roughly chopped raw hazelnuts
- 1 cup white granulated sugar, divided, plus more for sprinkling
- 2 teaspoons of freshly grated lemon zest or 1/2 teaspoon lemon extract
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon, plus more for sprinkling
- Pinch of clove powder
- 5 tart apples peeled, cored and cut into halves
- Vanilla ice cream (Optional)
*Make the crumbs by cutting pumpernickel bread into small pieces, spread out them out on a parchment-lined baking sheet and toast in the oven until the bread is hard. Transfer to a blender or a food processor and pulse until the pieces are pulverized into crumbs.
- In a small bowl, combine the dried currents and dark rum and let marinate for at least a half hour.
- Coat an 8" by 8" pan or baking dish with cooking spray and set aside.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.Ab
- Pulse the pumpernickel bread crumbs in a food processor or blender with the cinnamon and clove powders.
- Slice the peeled, cored apples in half and then slice each half into small pieces, lengthwise.
- Place the apple slices in a bowl and sprinkle with 1/2 cup of sugar.
- Toss with a wooden spoon to make sure all the apple slices are evenly coated.
- Melt 5 tablespoons of the unsalted butter.
- Transfer the pumpernickel bread crumb and spices mixture to a medium-sized bowl. Add the melted butter, rum infused currants, the remaining 1/2 cup of sugar, grated lemon zest or extract and mix with a wooden spoon to combine to combine.
- Spoon one-third of the bread crumb mixture into the prepared baking dish and use a spatula to gently spread it evenly over the bottom of the pan or dish.
- Lay half of the apple slices on top of the crumb mix and then cover with the second third of the crumb mix.
- Place the remaining apple slices on top and then cover them with the remaining third of the bread crumbs.
- Cut the remaining three tablespoons of butter into small pieces and scatter them over the top of the dessert.
- Sprinkle with extra sugar and cinnamon powder, if desired
- Place the dessert in the oven and bake for 20 minutes.
- Remove from oven and let the dessert cool down a bit in the pan.
- Serve warm, scooping portions out onto a dessert plate or glass and top with vanilla ice cream (optional)