#18 Recipe of the Day – Apple Pie

Hi! 

As you can see from the title of this post, I want to start a recipe of the day thing. 

Today’s recipe is  . . . Our Best Bites Apple Pie.

This is the best apple pie crust that I have found. My whole family loves this pie, it is a special treat when I make it.

Without further ado . . . the recipes.

Pie Crust

9-Inch Single Pie Crust

1 1/4c. all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1/3 c.+ 1 Tbsp. shortening (I prefer butter flavored but either works)
Ice water (probably about 1/4 c.)

Making the Dough

Combine flour and salt in a medium-sized bowl. Add shortening in small cubes.

Cut in shortening (room temperature) until you get pieces that are about pea-sized.

Now, this is where it gets a little tricky, but don’t be scared. Start sprinkling the ice water by about a tablespoon at a time over the flour/shortening mixture.

Very, very gently, turn the dough with your fingers so it gets exposed to the water. You’re NOT mixing, just trying to moisten all of the flour/shortening mixture. Gradually, all of the flour mixture will be moistened. Gently pat the dough into a ball (it should come together easily but not be sticky).

Wrap in plastic wrap and keep in the fridge until you’re ready to use.

Rolling the Dough
When you’re ready to roll out your pie crust, lightly flour your work surface and place the dough ball on the surface. One of the keys in making pie crust is to handle the dough as little as possible. Don’t freak out TOO much; like I said, this recipe for crust is pretty forgiving, but at the same time, the less you touch it, the more tender and flaky it will be. Starting in the center, roll the dough out into a circle shape, about 1/8″ thick. When you’ve reached your desired thickness, place the rolling pin in the middle and gently fold the crust over the rolling pin. Lift the dough onto your pie plate and unfold it (gently; notice a theme here?).

The Edge of Reason
Unless I’m planning on doing something fancy schmancy with my edges, I just run a sharp knife around the edges of the pie plate, cutting off the excess dough. Then I use my thumb and fingers to make kind of a big, wavy edge on the crust, but that’s just how I do it; there are lots of pretty pie edges.


Pre-baked Crusts
Sometimes a recipe will call for a pre-baked crust. Some people place “weights” (either little balls specifically designed for this purpose, or even beans) in the pie to keep it from puffing and shrinking, but I’ve found that with this recipe, I don’t need them. Just prick the bottom of the crust with a fork and bake at 450 for 10-12 minutes or until golden-brown.

Double Crusts
Sometimes you’ll need or want a lid on top of that pie. Just double the recipe for the crust and cut the dough in half, using one part for the bottom and one part for the top.

When you put the crust on top, you’ll need some way of letting the steam out. This is where you can really wow people. I had a roommate who would cut a cute little heart in the top crust; some people cut some decorative slits so when you put it on top, it spreads a little and looks all pretty. My favorite thing to do is a lattice top.

How to Make a Lattice Crust
Place the rolled-out bottom crust in the pie plate, fill your pie as desired, and then roll out the top crust and cut it into strips about 1″ wide. You can use a knife or a fluted pastry wheel.

Now, lay 4-5 strips vertically on top of your pie…

Now fold every other strip back and lay a horizontal strip right under the part you’ve folded back.

Unfold the vertical strip so it lays on top of the horizontal strip.  Repeat this step, this time folding back pieces that you didn’t fold before,

and then continue repeating.

until the pie is covered.

Now gently press the crust strips into the bottom crust and finish the edges however you like! This step goes for any way you top your pie…

I (sara) like to just fold the strips into the edges so I have a nice, round, solid edge

and then flute the edges all the way around

If you want, you can brush the top of your crust with some melted butter and sprinkle with sugar like I’ve done with the cherry pie here:

She Gets Distracted by Shiny Things…
Some people really like that pretty, golden shine that some pies have. Personally, I can take it or leave it and I usually leave it. I have egg issues (in that they tend to creep me out, not that I’m deathly allergic) and I’ve noticed a distinct, yucky, burny egginess sometimes when I put an egg wash on a crust. Also, if the eggs aren’t thoroughly beaten or if there’s more egg in some places than others, I’ve found that the egg wash doesn’t come out so pretty. BUT if you’ve ever wondered how to get that pretty, shiny pie and want to do it, beat an egg very well and then brush the crust top (or edges if your pie doesn’t have a top) with the beaten egg and bake. You’ll want to keep an eye on how it’s browning, though, you don’t want your pie to look burned. Personally, I’ve found that this crust browns nicely and looks perfectly pretty without an egg wash.If You Can’t Take the Heat…
You’ll want to keep an eye on your pie as it’s baking because sometimes, the crust gets brown long before the pie is done. If you see this happening, take some tin foil and punch a hole a couple inches in diameter in the middle. Remove pie from oven and carefully, loosely place the shield over the pie (loose because you still want the steam to be able to escape). This will keep the edges from getting too brown while the middle finishes cooking.

Apple Pie

A simple classic that is always a hit.

Ingredients 

  • Pastry for double-crust pie
  • cups peeled, sliced Granny Smith apples (about 1 1/2 pounds)
  • Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1/2 c. sugar
  • 1/2 c. brown sugar
  • Tbsp. all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • Tbsp. butter, chopped

Instructions

  1. Roll half of the pastry to 1/8″ thickness on a surface that’s been sprayed with cooking spray. Gently place in a 9″ pie plate; set aside.
  2. Preheat your oven to 450. Combine lemon juice and apples in a large bowl. Combine 1/2 c. sugar and next four ingredients, mixing well. Spoon over apple mixture, tossing gently. Spoon filling evenly into pastry shell and dot with chopped butter.
  3. Roll remaining pie crust 1/8″ thick (see “Pie Crusts” — link below — for ideas on how to top your crust, including instructions on how to make a lattice crust). When your top is how you want it, bake at 450 for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 350 and bake 50 minutes more. Definitely keep an eye on the pie; you may need to make a shield if it starts getting too brown. If you get worried, go ahead and make a square of foil, cut a center out of the foil, and place it on the pie so the foil covers the edge of the pie

 

I hope you try this recipe and enjoy it! Thanks for reading!

Sincerely,

 

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