1. Obtain some APPLESAUCE
For the applesauce, I made homemade applesauce! Mostly from Macintosh apples and a couple Lobo apples from apple picking with A. It was the most amazing applesauce I've made so far (from the Macintosh apples maybe?), and it came out a dusty pink colour. I used this recipe but they are all very similar:
The Kitchn: How to Make Applesauce in the Slow Cooker.
3. Make the shortbread cookie crust:
Mix together :
- 2 cups flour
- 2 sticks butter (salted, or add pinch of salt)
- 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
Line a 9x13 pan with parchment paper. Don’t miss this step like I did, because then I had a lot of trouble taking the first few bars out of the pan later.
Press the crust mix into the pan and bake at 350 for 10-15 min. No longer than 15 min or the crust may start to burn at the second bake.
Alternatively you could do a graham cracker crust (which might come out of the pan easier), and/or use muffin cups.
4. Make the Filling:
- 3 pkgs. (8 oz. each) cream cheese, softened
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 tablespoons flour - this sounds odd but it’s to help balance the extra liquid from the applesauce. You could try cornstarch, arrowroot, or another thickener of your choice.
- 3 eggs
- 1 cup applesauce
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
- Optional: pinch of salt
In a stand mixer, beat the cream cheese and sugar together. Sprinkle in the flour and blend well. Add in the eggs, one at a time, then the remaining ingredients. Beat until well blended. The filling may be fairly runny.
Pour the filling into the crust-lined pan. Bake at 350ºF for 50 to 60 minutes. Check if centre is set with a toothpick. Cool.
I sprinkled cinnamon sugar on top for decoration. Refrigerate several hours.