Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Last Post of 2013: Best Apple Pie EVER!

Well here we are, the last day of 2013.  For me, this year has gone by quickly, yet really slow at the same time.  I can't say I'm too broken-hearted to start a new chapter in my life.  This is the year that I turn 30 (I have a little less than a month to go,)  and I'm quite determined to make it a great one!  Hopefully this new year will be full of new adventures, and great cooking.  So long 2013, welcome 2014!  I wish all of you a wonderful new year!

For Christmas I made an apple pie to bring to one of our dinners.  I got nothing but rave reviews, so I knew that it was a recipe that I needed to share with my readers.

What a comfort apple pie is.  Slightly tart and sweet apples, smothered in a sweet spiced syrup, all stuffed in a homemade (after years of doing a store bought one, I finally faced my fear and conquered it) flaky crust.  Serve it warm with some sweet vanilla ice cream, and it is simply the perfect end to a perfect meal.

Crust Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup vegetable shortening (this is what I use:Spectrum Organic Shortening)
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 cup ice water 
Crust Steps:

Combine the flour, salt, and cinnamon.

After the dry ingredients are mixed together well, add the softened butter, and shortening. 

Using this method, incorporate the butter and shortening into the dry mixture.

 Pour in the ice water little by little, until the dough sticks together.

With clean hands, kneed lightly until the dough forms a ball.

Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

Pie Filling Ingredients:

  • 8 jazz apples
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour 
  • 1 tablespoon corn starch
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • sprinkle of nutmeg
  • sprinkle of all spice
  • sprinkle of cloves
  • dash of cinnamon

Pie Filling Steps:

Over medium low heat, melt the unsalted butter in a medium sized pot.

After the butter has melted, add the brown and white sugar, flour, corn starch, nutmeg, all spice, cloves, and cinnamon.

Give the mixture a stir, and begin on the apples.

Peel, core, and chop the 8 apples.

Be sure to keep an eye on the sugar mixture, and stir it often.

When the mixture is hot, and slightly bubbly (but not boiling,) pour the mixture over the apples.

Reserve a tablespoon or two of the syrup.

Be sure to stir the mix the apples and the syrup right away before the syrup cools too much.

Set the covered apples aside for a moment.

Pie Assembly:

Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Take the pie crust dough out of the refrigerator.

Allow the dough to soften a bit, you might need to work it with your hands to help soften it up.

Split the dough in half.

On a clean, floured surface, roll out the dough to about 1/4" thick.

In the microwave, melt a tablespoon of unsalted butter.

Brush the melted butter onto your favorite pie dish. (I have this one, and I love it:Emile Henry 9-Inch Pie Dish)

Lay the sheet of rolled out dough into your pie dish.

Be careful that there are no air bubbles.

Cut the excess dough away from the edges.

Carefully pour the apples into the prepared pie crust.

Make sure the apples are slightly mounded and evenly spread out.

Roll out the other half of the dough to 1/4" thick.

Cut a fun decorative vent into the center of your pie crust, or you could use a small cookie cutter to make a vent.

Place the rolled out dough on top of your apples.

Cut the excess away from the edges, and crimp the bottom crust and the top crust together.

Brush the reserved syrup on the top of the pie.

Bake for 20 minutes, then cover the crusts, either with strips of foil, or a Pie Crust Shield .

Bake for an additional 40 minutes, or until the top is bubbly and the apples are soft.

Cool completely.

This pie is a new family favorite that I will be making for many get togethers to come.  Slices are perfect as is, or slightly heat your slice up in the microwave for a few seconds.

1 comment:

Debra Eliotseats said...

I am going to have to get some Jazz apples.

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