Making apple pie has never been on my baking bucket list, but it is definitely something that I knew I should try once! Which I guess means it should be on a bucket list. My mistake. Ok, so now that the apple pie has moved from “maybe make” to “must make”, I decided that I should give it a try.
The most important things to keep in mind when making apple pie is 1. the crust, and 2. the apples. You need a good crust recipe and you need A LOT of apples. More than you think you will. And then more than that. We went to my mother in law’s to pick apples, and I brought along a little basket to collect them in. She laughed at me and brought me out a HUGE planting pot! Like a pot for an indoor tree!! I laughed at her, and thought that she was the one “out to lunch”. Needless to say, I should have listened to her and her 60+ years of baking apple pie experience. That and the fact that she’s Italian. She knows what’s she’s doing in the kitchen.
Apple Pie Pastry
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour (300g)
1 teaspoon salt (5mL)
1 teaspoon sugar (5mL)
1 cup of cold butter (240g)
1/4-1/2 cup cold water (60mL-120mL)
Apple Pie Filling
3 lbs apples, sliced, cored and peeled
2 tablespoons lemon juice (30mL)
1 teaspoon cinnamon (5mL)
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup granulated sugar (50g)
1 egg yolk
1 tablespoon heavy cream (15mL)
Coarse sanding sugar for decoration
To make the pastry, combine and mix the flour, sugar and salt in a food processor. Add the butter and use the “pulse” button to combine. You will be looking for a coarse texture, with small pieces of butter. Add the cold water and continue to pulse until the dough combines. If it is dry, add more water a tablespoon at a time. Divide the dough in half and wrap in plastic wrap. Cool in fridge for 1 hour, or overnight.
When dough is chilled, roll out on a floured surface until 1/4″-1/8″ thick. Place into pie pan. Set into fridge if desired.
To make the filling, combine the apples, cinnamon, salt, sugar, nutmeg and lemon juice and mix to coat apples. Fill pie shell, piling up in the middle. Place in fridge again to keep cool.
Roll out second disc of dough to the same thickness and place over top of apples. Be sure to vent the crust by pricking it with a fork or knife. Mix together the egg wash and brush onto the pastry. Sprinkle with sanding sugar if desired.
Bake in preheated oven at 425F for 25 minutes. Lower temperature to 375F and continue to bake for 60-70 more minutes.
Allow to cool for 2-3 hours before slicing.
Things to note:
When making the crust, you can use butter/margarine/Crisco interchangeably. Whichever you prefer to work with. Butter makes for a more flakier dough (therefore has more potential for cracking while rolling), while Crisco makes for a smoother dough for rolling. I haven’t tried margarine, but would love to know if you have. When using Crisco, I needed a lot of flour on my rolling pin.
Make sure you prep your apples ahead of time (you can put them in water with lemon juice in it to delay the browning slightly). It took me hours to peel, core and chop. Since making this pie, I spent $20 at Target on an Apple Peeler/Corer/Slicer! It does all three and made making applesauce with my Kindergartens a breeze! I might even try making an apple pie again!
Do you have any tips for a beginner pie maker?