- 5 gala apples (2 pounds total)
- 1 stick unsalted butter
- 1 cup plus 1 Tbsp. sugar
- 1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
- 8 graham crackers, finely chopped
- 1/8 tsp. salt
- 11 oz. cream cheese, at room temperature
- 2 eggs
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1 cup walnuts, chopped
- 3/4 cup sour cream
Peel, quarter annd core the apples. Cut each quarter into 2 lenthwise slices. In a large nonstick skillet, melt 3 tablespoons butter over medium-high heat. Add the apples, six tablespoons sugar and the lemon juice. Cook, turning occasionally, until the apples begin to caramelize, about 8 minutes. Lower the heat to low, add one tablespoon butter and cook until the apples are tender, about 5 minutes. Let cool.
Line muffin pan with liners. Preheat the oven to 325. In a small pan, melt 2 tablespoons butter, then place in a medium bowl. Mix in the graham crackers and salt. Divide the mixture among the muffin cups. Press into the bottoms. Transfer to freezer to set.
In a bowl, combine he cream cheese and 1/2 cup sugar. Using a mixer, beat at high speed until creamy, about 2 minutes. Beat in the eggs one at a time, scraping down the bowl in between. Mix in the vanilla.
Arrange apple slices in a single layer on the crust in the muffin tins. Reserve remaining apples for tops at room temperature. Divide the cream cheese mixture evenly among the cups; bake until set, but slightly jiggly (start with 7 minutes). Turn off the oven, open the door slightly and let cool for 15 minutes. Chill overnight.
In a small skillet, melt remaining butter. Add the walnut and two tablespoons sugar and cook, until toasted, minutes. Cool on paper towels, then break up the candied nuts.
Arrange the reserved apples with their juices on top of the cakes. Stir the remaining tablespoon of sugar into the sour cream. Top the cakes with the sour cream and candied nuts.