Ah, autumn. That time of year when we can't help but swallow every drop of pumpkin ale, stuff ourselves silly with butternut squash soup, and, obviously, cover everything with caramel and apples. To that end, we stumbled upon the perfect fall recipe for caramel apple pull-apart bread, ideal for sharing with eager co-workers or...eating all of it yourself because you deserve it.

The bread is sweet and light, balanced out by the sourness of Granny Smith apples, and the entire concoction molded in a sticky caramel glaze. You should have almost all of the ingredients in your kitchen already. Ready? Let's go!

Caramel Apple Pull-Apart Bread

Dough:

¼ cup warm water
1 package of active dry yeast (2 & ¼ teaspoon)
4 tbsp butter, melted
1/3 cup milk
2 ¾ cup all-purpose flour (plus a bit more, if necessary)
¼ cup sugar
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 eggs

Filling:

¾ cup brown sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
pinch of salt
3 tbsp butter, melted
1 large Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored, and diced
Caramel Glaze:
2 tbsp butter
½ cup brown sugar
2 tbsp milk

Other:

9x5 loaf pan, aluminum foil

Instructions:

Dough

1. In a small bowl, combine melted butter, milk, and vanilla. Make sure the melted butter isn't too hot.
2. In a large bowl, combine warm water and yeast. Stir until dissolved.
3. Combine flour, sugar, and salt in another bowl. Add to warm water and yeast.
4. Add eggs, mixing constantly, and then stir in the milk/butter/vanilla mixture. As you stir (I like to use my hands for this part), a soft dough should form. Add flour by the teaspoon until the dough pulls away from the side of the bowl. Kneed dough for two minutes.
5. Cover dough and let rise in a warm place for 90 minutes. Go read a book or call your mom or something.

Meanwhile! The filling.

1. In a small bowl, mix together the brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt. Set aside. Prepare apples and melt butter just before dough is done rising.
2. Grease a 9x5 loaf pan.

Back to the dough:

1. Preheat oven to 350.
2. Turn risen dough out onto floured work surface and roll out into a large rectangle (~12x24, about ¼ inch thick).
3. Brush dough with melted butter. Sprinkle dough with cinnamon sugar filling mixture. Lightly press into dough.
4. Cut dough into around five equal-sized, long strips (I used a knife, but a pizza roller is ideal).
5. Place about 1/5 of apples on top of first strip. Position second strip on top of first. Place another 1/5 of apples onto second strip. Repeat until strips are all stacked on top of each other and filled.
6. Cut the stack into 4-6 equal, smaller stacks of squares. Place squares horizontally in prepared loaf pan.

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(Cecilia D'Anastasio/Gothamist)

7. Bake for 40 minutes or until golden brown and cooked through. You can cover it with foil if the bread is too brown on top before the rest is fully cooked.
8. Cool for 10 minutes.

100113applebread5.jpg
(Cecilia D'Anastasio/Gothamist)

Glaze:

1. Add butter, brown sugar, and milk to a saucepan over medium heat. Bring to boil and cook for 1 minute.
2. Drizzle loaf with warm caramel glaze.
3. Serve, now. Best enjoyed same day it's baked!

100113applebread8.jpg
(Cecilia D'Anastasio/Gothamist)

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(Cecilia D'Anastasio/Gothamist)

Recipe adapted from Alaska from Scratch, which was in turn inspired by Food.com and The Craving Chronicles