Last week, we took a drive out to a u-pick apple orchard, to celebrate the first day of fall. It was a gorgeous, sunny afternoon, with just a touch of chill in the air. As we ran and played amongst the corridors of trees, it felt as though the rest of the world had fallen away. We filled sacks with the most gorgeous apples I have ever seen – so big, they needed two hands to be plucked from their trees. The boys whooped and hollered in excitement each time they found the biggest, or the reddest, or the most perfect apple. And we left with full baskets and fuller hearts.
I knew I wanted to make some sort of sweet apple bread – something similar to the apple pull-apart rolls they make at my favorite coffee shop. My first attempt was good, but not quite what I was looking for. I made a sweet dough and sliced it into strips, layering apples in between the strips of dough, and tucking them into a loaf pan. I topped it off with a generous amount of streusel. It was tasty, but the cinnamon sugar goodness of the streusel was all on top. I kept thinking it would have been better if the streusel was distributed throughout the dough.
For my next attempt, I decided to coat each piece of dough in cinnamon sugar, and skip the streusel. I used a bundt pan, rather than a loaf pan, so that it had plenty of room to expand. I realized, after flipping through some recipes for inspiration, that this is how “monkey bread” is made. I’ve never made monkey bread before, but basically that’s what this recipe is – apple cinnamon monkey bread. I’m still partial to the name “pull-apart bread”, but no matter what you call it, this one’s a keeper!
Apple Cinnamon Pull-Apart Bread RECIPE: