Tuesday, September 08, 2015

The Baking Bible: Luscious Apple Pie

This apple pie is pretty terrific. I'm not even totally satisfied with my efforts on the pie crust and I still think this is one of the best apple pies I've ever had. 

We're using the tender and flaky cream cheese pie crust again and this time it was flaky and buttery but maybe not all that tender. The top crust shatters slightly when cutting into it which I like, but I'm not noticing a tenderness to the dough so much. Maybe I floured it too much when rolling out. 

The filling is about 2 pounds of apples. We are just seeing apples show up in some quantity at the farmer's market this weekend so I asked Mark to grab them while I chased after the child. He can't remember what he picked up, golden something he thinks, but they were something like a cross between a Granny Smith and a Honeycrisp in flavor but a bit drier than both. Eliot ended up eating a bunch of the apples I sliced so I threw in a few Pink Ladies as well as half of a Honeycrisp to get the weight needed.

The apple slices then macerate in brown and white sugar and cinnamon and nutmeg for up to 3 hours, but I think it was closer to 4 hours when I finally got back to them. The juices are strained out and concentrated down with butter until they are thick and kinda caramelized and syrupy.

And the big deal about this pie? Fresh apple cider is concentrated down with cornstarch to add a big punch of apple flavor, which really is genius. This is a big deal.

i like how it looks like the pie slice is sticking its tongue out
 All these concentrated juices get mixed back in with the apples and poured into the pie plate (obviously already lined with the bottom crust). Then the top crust is placed on and all manner of decorating can then occur. I did a liberal sprinkling of sanding sugar and crimped the edge, which then fell down during the bake. Oh well.

I left the pie, unbaked and covered in plastic, in the refrigerator overnight because I ran out of time. This was an all day project, with fits and starts, which is great for life with a busy toddler. But at the same time, I was like, when does pie become and all day project? I don't remember my grandma taking all day to bake an apple pie.

But then once the pie is baked, and the heavenly aroma of apples and cinnamon fill the house, the all-day pie project seems totally worth it. And that is before we got to taste it! Rose suggests waiting 4 hours before cutting into the pie, probably for the juices to thicken further as well as to let everything, you know, cool down.
apple pie and vanilla ice cream were made for each other
We are in love with this pie. Mark, the pie dude, loves this pie. Apple pie was my gateway pie, and this is by far the best I've ever had. So worth the time and effort to make!


  1. Perfect! The apples and interior caramel-y buttery sauce look perfect.

  2. Your pie looks amazing!!! So juicy and the apples are all cooked through!

    1. Thanks Faithy! I forgot to say that I had to bake the pie for 90 min for it to test done. That's probably why the apples looked baked through!

  3. The pastry looks perfect from this side of the screen, as does the rest of the pie. I like the 'gateway pie' concept. Apple is mine too and I think I'm stuck at the gate really.

  4. What a gorgeous pie! It's so good you were able to both make pie and take care of your toddler...champion!

  5. Looks marvelous! We had French vanilla ice cream also because it's the favorite match of my husband as well. I took mine out a tad late because I went to another room, but the juices were 212' so I guess that is about right. Yours looks perfect.

  6. That looks so amazing. Such a great post I need to make this!!

  7. Your pics are perfect. Your pie looks just delicious. I loved this pie too. I think it was the best I ever had. Nice post Jen. I enjoyed reading it.

  8. ב''ה

    Boy. Yours really came out nicely. Looks really delicious.

  9. My gateway pie was cherry. Jen, you did a great job. Love way yours turned out! Isn't this a great recipe? You might want to try my new favorite hybrid food processor/hand method of pastry making. It has turned out to be ticket for the best pie crusts I've ever had or made.

  10. wow--i love how caramelized the apple got and the texture of the apples and crust look amazingly good!