Let’s get shakin!!!

As I see the kiddos returning to school, my social media is flooded with first day back to school pictures; I reminisce. I don’t have children but most of my friends do.

I remember back to when I was young when their parents were young. Back to school shopping, moms and dads exhausted from the summer heat and let’s be honest, THE KIDS.

I remember Labor Day weekend, I remember it was the last hoorah, it meant the long hot days of our southern summer were coming slowly to an end. I remember growing up we never started school before Labor Day.

Why do they now? Labor Day was created in the late 19th century and became a federal holiday in 1894. Labor Day symbolizes the end of summer, and is usually celebrated with parties, street parades and athletic events. Even though school has already started I have the perfect little treat to serve or take to this year’s festivities or to make and celebrate at home with the kiddos that are now out of your hair 7 hours a day.

Treat yourself, summers ending, you made it! 

Summer Apple Bites 


Cooking spray
1 c. (2 sticks) butter, softened
1/2 c. granulated sugar
1/4 c. packed brown sugar 
2 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. kosher salt 


6 apples, peeled, cored, and sliced 
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1/2 c. packed brown sugar 
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. kosher salt


1 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
1 c. chopped pecans
1 c. packed brown sugar 
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
3/4 c. (1 1/2 sticks) butter, melted

Caramel, for serving

  1. Preheat oven to 350° and line a 9”-x-13” pan with parchment then grease with cooking spray. In a large bowl using a hand mixer, beat butter and sugars together until light and fluffy. Add flour and salt and mix until just combined. 
  2. Press into prepared pan about 1/2” up sides. Bake until lightly golden, 20 minutes. 
  3. In a large bowl, toss apples, lemon juice, brown sugar, cinnamon, vanilla, and salt together. Spread apples over crust. 
  4. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, pecans, brown sugar, and salt. Stir in melted butter until coarse clumps form.
  5. Sprinkle crumb topping over apples and bake until top is golden, and apples are soft, about 1 hour. 
  6. Let cool at least 15 minutes then slice into squares and drizzle with caramel before serving.

Remember, “treat your kitchen, treat yourself”

Uniquely southern, surely the best  Chef Hunter Lee