cooking

Happy (Belated) Pi Day!

Hi Friends!

Last week, I also cooked an apple pie. As we all know, last Tuesday was Pi Day (3/14) and I promised my friends a pie. My favorite kind of pie is probably Apple Pie (but pie is not my favorite dessert…) and I have super easy access to all of the ingredients. I used Pillsbury recipe as a jumping off point (link here), but I changed it a little bit based on the complex apple pie recipe I have.

Here’s the complete recipe:

Ingredients

  • 2 pre-packaged pie crusts (or maybe 4, I’ll talk about that a little later)
  • 6 medium-sized apples, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon (a dash) ground nutmeg
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 egg yolk, beaten

Hardware

  • 1 9-inch pie pan
  • 1 medium saucepan
  • 1 small bowl (for egg yolk)
  • a pastry (or braising) brush
  • a cutting board
  • aluminum foil
  • rolling pin

Instructions

Filling

  1. Mix apple slices with sugar, cinnamon, salt, nutmeg, and lemon juice in saucepan and stir together over medium-high heat; make sure that the apples are completely and evenly coated with sugar and spices. Continuously stir for 2 minutes. Turn off heat.

Crust

  1. Roll the two crusts together to about 1/4 inch width.
  2. Place crust in pie pan and cut off excess from the edge.
  3. Roll the remaining crust into a circle to be used as the top crust. Set aside.

All together now!

  1. Spoon apple filling into pie pan/crust.
  2. Cover apple filling with top crust and squeeze the edges together. Cut slits or shapes in the top crust so that the steam has somewhere to go during cooking.
  3. Brush egg yolk onto top crust.
  4. Cook pie for ~45 minutes at 425°F or until crust is golden brown.
  5. If necessary, about 15 minutes in, cover edges with 2-3 inch strips of aluminum foil to prevent over-browning of the edges. Continue to cook pie regularly.
  6. Let pie cool for at least 2 hours before serving. Serve with vanilla ice cream and enjoy!

I think that there is only one other cooked dessert that’s better with vanilla ice cream (peach cobbler if you must know). Anyway, I think that this is a good apple pie recipe, but it’s not my favorite recipe for apple pie. If want a simple recipe that doesn’t require too many ingredients, this is the recipe for you.

I mentioned that I would write about the question of how many pie crusts to buy. I should start by saying that I always learned to make pies using a double crust. I think that I first heard about that from a Southern Living cookbook and decided to try it. I came to the conclusion that I prefer a double crust to a single crust and now that’s how I make all of my pies.

Anyway, there is a way to handmade pie crusts, but that requires time and hardware that I don’t own. Since I prefer to buy my pie crusts, I always get the two pack so that I can roll them together. Unfortunately, that doesn’t leave very much crust for the top crust after putting the crust in the pan. For that reason, you might want to purchase 3 crusts (or four if you have to). I have always been able to make 2 crusts work, but it’s always a little bit of a stretch.

I should also mention, that you can make the pie using the single crust, but my favorite part of the pie is the crust and so I like to have as much of it as possible in each and every bite.

One other thing that might be a bit strange in this recipe is the use of the egg yolk as an egg wash. If you’ve been baking for a while, you might know that egg washes are used on puff pastries and pie crusts to make them a beautiful golden brown. Most egg washes use one whole egg, but I think that a better result comes from using the egg yolk. Not only is the golden brown more golden, but you’re more likely to use all of the egg wash that you have (as opposed to having some left over when you use a whole egg). I also learned this trick from Southern Living.

Also, when you cook the filling, DO NOT OVER COOK. This step is literally just to make your life easier when you stir the filling ingredients together. Don’t let the sauce that is formed (from the heat, sugar, and apple juice) caramelize!

Let me know if you make this recipe and what you think of it!

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2 thoughts on “Happy (Belated) Pi Day!”

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