I've been wanting to make an Apple Charlotte ever since I saw Julia Child demonstrate it on the French Chef. I was all the more inspired once I got my Charlotte mold for my birthday a few months ago. It seemed only fitting that I should actually get around to trying my hand at one this week in honor of Downton Abbey's return. (Even though Mrs. Patmore refused to make apple charlotte when requested.) There are several different variations of this recipe out there, but I chose to start with Julia Child's recipe and adapt it to fit my own preferences. I left out the rum that Julia's version includes, but liked that she used slices of bread instead of breadcrumbs, like many other versions call for. What you end up with is a lovely, buttery, crisped bread crust, filled with a thick apple puree in the middle. Paired with the Vanilla Crème Anglaise, it is incredible. (Although I am certain I would be content eating paperclips if they were covered in that delectable custard sauce. )
If you don't have an actual Charlotte mold like mine, you could try using a round casserole dish or a round metal cake pan. It is best if you have a dish with fairly tall sides. According to Julia: "For the sake of drama, the mold should be 3-½ to 4 inches high."