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It’s nearly Father’s Day and while I am looking forward to planning a hearty menu for my Dad and husband, there are a few other fathers I will be missing…my Grandfather Elios, my Grandfather Nunzio, and my Godfather Joey. Every one of these men has played an important role in my life, and I could write volumes about everything that each one of these men has meant to me over the years. But this year I wanted to share a simple recipe, which was the last thing I made for my Godfather/Uncle Joey before he passed away. Sometimes it is the simple things that can put a smile on someone’s face, and knowing that he enjoyed the various textures and flavors of this dessert is something that I have often reflected upon over the last few months.

To all of the wonderful father’s out there- may you be surrounded by those that truly appreciate you and spoiled by the simple things that make you smile.

Godfather Apple Turnovers

* this dessert can easily double as a breakfast treat


4 medium Granny Smith apples, peeled and diced small

1 tsp lemon juice

2 TBS butter

2 tsp lemon or orange peel

1/4- 1/3 cup sugar (depends on tartness of apple)

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 tbs cornstarch

1 tsp cinnamon

1/2 package phyllo sheets

4 TBS butter (1/2 cube)

powdered sugar; for dusting


Peel and dice apples, place in cold water with lemon juice to keep apples from turning brown. When ready to cook the apples, allow to drain for a few minutes in colander to remove excess water.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

In a medium saucepan, on medium-low heat, add apples, sugar, vanilla, orange/lemon peel, cinnamon and cornstarch. Cook approximately 5 minutes, stirring regularly, until the apple mixture thickens. Remove from heat and set aside.

Remove phyllo dough from package and have a damp towel ready so you can keep the phyllo sheets covered as you work. They tend to dry out quickly.

In a small pan on low heat, melt butter. Using a pastry brush, brush one phyllo sheet. Position dough so that the longer side faces you. Fold in half (vertical) and brush again. Fold again to form a long strip. Brush again with butter. On one edge, add about 1 1/2 TBS of the apple filling. Fold into the form of a triangle. Brush the outside of the triangle phyllo turnover with extra butter and sprinkle with sugar. Place on a cookie sheet. Bake for 15 minutes or until nicely golden brown. Check after 10 minutes to ensure that the turnovers are not burning as oven temperatures do vary. Allow to cool and dust with powdered sugar.

Best Godparents a child could have!