Sunday, November 1, 2015

Apple pie

I've made apple tarts, apple cobblers, Dutch apple pies, and apple crisps, but I've never made a true apple pie. Yesterday was the first day I gave it a shot. Disclaimer - I am a very picky pie crust eater. I don't like too thick, too thin, too cakey, or too crisp; I've rarely tasted a pie crust that I really truly love ... there have been one or two. It's why I almost always make tart doughs - they are easier to make, roll out, and consume. So, all of that said, I used Trader Joe's pie crusts for this pie. I didn't want to disappoint myself and ruin this pie with bad pie crust. Now that I have the technique with the filling down, next time, I'll try making my own pie crust. I just need to find the exact right pie crust recipe. If you have one, this filling will do your gorgeous pie crust justice. This filling recipe is from Cook's Country, the October/November issue.

Apple Pie
1⁄2 cup granulated sugar
1⁄4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1⁄4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1⁄2 teaspoon lemon zest, grated
1⁄8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 1⁄2 lbs tart apples, about 5 medium, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices
2 1⁄2 lbs sweet apples, about 5 medium, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices
1 egg white, beaten lightly
1 teaspoon granulated sugar
2 (9-inch) pie doughs

For the filling and crust:
1. Toss apples, granulated sugar, brown sugar, lemon zest, salt and cinnamon together in a Dutch oven. Cover and cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until apples are tender when poked with fork but still hold their shape, 15-20 minutes. Transfer apples and their juice to rimmed baking sheet and let cool completely, about 30 minutes.

2. Roll 1 dough into 12-inch circle on lightly floured counter. Loosely roll dough around rolling pin and gently unroll it onto 9-inch pie plate, letting excess dough hang over the edge. Ease dough into plate by gently lifting edge of dough with your hand while pressing into plate bottom with other hand. Leave any dough that overhangs plate in place. Wrap dough-lined plate loosely in plastic and refrigerate until dough is firm, about 30 minutes. Roll other dough into 12-inch circle on lightly floured counter, then transfer to parchment paper-lined baking sheet; cover with plastic and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

3. Adjust oven rack to lowest position and heat oven to 425 degrees. Drain cooked apples thoroughly in colander set over bowl and reserve 1/4 cup of the juice. Stir lemon juice into reserved juice. Spread apples in dough-lined plate, mounding them slightly in the middle, and drizzle with apple juice mixture. Loosely roll remaining dough round around rolling pin and gently unroll it onto filling.

4. Trim overhang to 1/2 inch beyond lip of plate. Pinch edges of top and bottom crusts firmly together. Tuck overhang under itself; folded edge should be flush with edge of plate. Crimp dough around edge of plate using your fingers. Cut four 2-inch slits in top of dough.

For the topping:
5. Brush the surface with egg white and sprinkle with sugar. Set pie on parchment-lined rimmed baking sheet and bake until crust is light golden brown, about 30 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 375 degrees, rotate baking sheet, and continue to bake until juices are bubbling and crust is deep golden brown, 30-40 minutes longer. Transfer pie to wire rack and let cool until filling has set, about 2 hours; serve slightly warm or at room temperature.

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