2large firm apples (your choice, see note) peeled, halved and cored
5tbsplight brown sugardivided
4tbspsalted sweet cream buttermelted and divided
vanilla ice creamoptional topping
caramel sundae toppingoptional topping
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Generously spray an 8x8 baking dish. Set it aside.
Using a cutting board and a sharp knife, place the halved apple cored side down. Starting on the outside of the apple, carefully cut slits almost, but not completely, through the apple. Space the slices ⅛ inches down the apple. Repeat for the remaining apple halves.
Place the slitted apple halves, cored side down, into the prepared baking dish.
Using a small mixing bowl, combine 2 ½ tablespoons brown sugar, 2 tablespoons melted butter and ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon.
Using a pastry brush, brush the sugar mixture evenly over the 4 apple halves.
Cover the baking dish with aluminum foil, and bake for 20 minutes.
Using a small mixing bowl, combine the remaining brown sugar, melted butter and ground cinnamon. Add the pecans and flour. Mix until smooth.
Remove the foil from the baking dish. Using 2 forks, carefully fan out the slices in the apple.
Spoon the pecan mixture over the halved apples.
Return the uncovered baking dish to the oven, and bake for a further 15 minutes.
Remove the baking dish from the oven, and allow the apples to rest for 5 minutes. Serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and a drizzle of caramel sundae topping.
To Store: Store any leftovers in an airtight container for up to 2 days.
To Freeze: Freezing the apples is not recommended.
When making the slits in the apples, to help keep the knife from going through, you can lay chopsticks at the top and the bottom of the apple.
For the best results, cut slices about 1/8-inch apart. Even very firm apples will cook down a little bit during baking, and when the slices are too thin, they begin to melt into each other, leaving the apple more droopy than fan-like.