One of my friends makes the most delicious apple pies. Not only has he mastered the art of a flaky crust, but he also goes out of his way to get great heirloom apples. I have access to a lot of different apple varieties at farmers markets here in DC, but there are some types he regularly uses that I have never seen in this area. This year my friend generously shared with me several varieties of apples that he brought back from Charlottesville: Albemarle Pippin, Arkansas Black, Esopus Spitzenburg, and Ashmead's Kernel. Of those, all of them were new to me except for Arkansas Black.
I decided to use some of the Albemarle Pippins (along with some Calville Blancs I still happened to have on hand) to make Amy Traverso's "Apple Brownies." While I automatically associate the word "brownie" with chocolate, these bars are chocolate free. The recipe specifies an 11-inch by 7-inch pan. I actually own a pan that particular size, but I multiplied the recipe by 1.5 and used a 13-inch by 9-inch pan instead.
To make the batter, you beat melted and cooled butter with sugar and an egg until pale; add diced apples and walnuts; and incorporate the dry ingredients (flour, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, and salt). When I transferred the batter into the parchment-lined pan, it looked like a pile of apples and nuts with just the tiniest amount of batter.