Nov 21, 2010

Recipes: Easy Apple Pie

Other than the drastic change on the weather, we can easily tell that autumn arrived with the change in the fresh produce: the berries become scarce, the apples and pears start getting more attention, as well as with the harder skin vegetables and leaves. 

I don't recall if I ever mentioned here that every other week we receive at home a box filled with fresh vegetables and fruits through Fresh Farm to You, which is a CSA (Community Supportive Agriculture), which in few words, mean that you receive produce fresh directly from the farmers. 

But all that to say that this past week we had received a large amount of apples and pears. I love them, but it's hard to eat them all before they spoil. Okay, I was just looking for an excuse to prepare my first apple pie.

With my Joy of Cooking book in hand, there I went to look for the recipe - it had to be an easy one. I adapted a little bit for my own taste:

Apple pie

two  9-inch crust pie (I skipped the dough preparation and bought it frozen at Whole Foods)
2 1/2 lb apples (about 5-6 apples)
1/2 cup sugar
2 tbsp all purpose flour
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1tbsp fresh lime juice
pinch of salt
2 tbsp unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
2 tsp sugar
1/8 tsp cinnamon 

1) Get the crusts out of the freezer, let it thaw slightly. Preheat the oven at 400F. 
2) In the meantime, peel, core and slice 1/4 inch thick the apples. 
3) Combine in a bowl: the 2/3 cup of sugar, flour, lime juice, 1/2 tsp cinnamon, salt. Let it stand for about 15 min, stirring several times.
4) Pour the filling into the bottom crust and gently level with the back of the spoon. Dot the top with the butter.
5) Using other crust with care, to cover the pie. Be careful to not break it in pieces (it happened to me...)
6) Sprinkle with 2tsp sugar and 1/8 tsp cinnamon. Spread it evenly so it doesn't mark the spots on the crust after baking.
7) If your oven is strong, bring the temperature down to 350F before baking it. Otherwise, bake it at 425F for about 30 min. Take a look after 15 min. We should bake it until the fruit feels just tender when a knife is poked through the vents. You will probably need more 30 min. Cool completely on a rack for about 3 hours. If you wish to serve the pie warm, place it in 350F oven for about 15 minutes. 

Well, my excitement preparing this pie and following a great cooking book were worth it, the result was in the end great. The crust was slightly brown, but the filling was delicious, perfectly balanced and taste. I over baked the crust and had few lightly burned spots (there are also some dark spots from the cinnamon).

To prevent that from happening again, I already adapted the recipe above to help you from having the same mistakes! (On one of the pictures, you can see some pears, I decided not to mix them, so I didn't use them).

The hubby was very encouraging and didn't let me give up (I was all down, when saw the crust darker...) This recipe is very easy and takes about 30 minutes of preparation and the time on the oven.

Update: On Thanksgiving, I did the apple pie recipe again and brushed the top crust with egg white (I used just one). It baked perfectly and uniformly. On a different oven, I let it bake for longer. 

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