Saturday, September 14, 2013


Jack Brandt, the hero of BAD NIGHTS, my new Sourcebooks romantic suspense release, had parents who separated when he was young.  But he did have a few good memories from his childhood, including some of the desserts his mother used to make.  This Apple Betty is one of his favorites.  It’s a little like bread pudding but with more fruit than bread.  Recently Jack was lucky enough to have found the right woman, Morgan Rains, who loves cooking.

This recipe is for her, so she can surprise Jack with one of his all-time favorites, but I hope you’ll enjoy it, too.  Note that I’ve taken a lot of the calories and carbs out of the dish by using Splenda instead of sugar.  I’ve used a combination of red and Granny Smith apples, and I’ve left the skins on.  You could also peel them if you like.

Makes six to seven servings.

1 cup Splenda
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
8 cups cored and cubed apples (about 8)
4 cups light bread cubes (I like to use Light Oatmeal Bread)
1/4 cup melted butter or margarine

1. In a 1-cup measure, stir together the Splenda and cinnamon.

2. In a large, microwave-safe bowl, stir together the apples and Splenda mixture.  Microwave on high power for 8 to 10 minutes, stirring two or three times, until apples are partially cooked.

3.  Meanwhile, spread the bread cubes on a cookie sheet with sides.  Toast in the broiler 5 or 6 minutes, stirring frequently, until cubes are browned.  Watch the cubes carefully to make sure they don’t burn.

4.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

5.  Transfer apples and cooking juice to an 8 ½ by 11-inch baking pan.  Stir in bread cubes.  Slowly drizzle the melted butter over the mixture.  Stir to coat well.

6.  Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, stirring once, until the apples are cooked through.

I serve the Betty with no-sugar-added ice cream or half and half. It will keep in the refrigerator for two or three days.