Thursday, October 28, 2010

Apple Pie

I partook this year in the quintessential fall activity:

Apple Picking!  And while the place of choice this year lost 90% of their crop in May, there were still lots of apples to be had.  

You just had to work for it:

Having fun with my apple picker.

Successful Apple Picker
I was saddened to hear that this small gorgeous little farm in Vermont had lost so much of their crop due to the rains in May.  Can you imagine?  It's 90% of their revenue!  I love supporting these local businesses - so I was more than happy to pick apples, eat a cider donut and obviously, visit the corn maze*.  

I wish I had paid closer attention to the actual types of apples I picked, but alas, I was having too much fun to be bothered.  I picked two different types - one which had a softer texture and one that was nice and crisp and firm.  I love my apple crisps and tart.  In fact, my favorite apples are Honeycrisp and they singlehandedly make me love fall.

My apples didn't look like they were going to last more than two weeks, so I decided to chef up a little pie, using this very simple recipe from Epicurious:

Apple Pie
Pre made pie crust
1 firmed packed cup brown sugar
1 tbsp ground cinnamon
3 1/2 pounds apple, cored, peeled and sliced

1 cup all purpose flour
1 cup sugar
2 sticks unsalted butter, cut into pieces.

Preheat your oven to 450 degrees.

The most time consuming part is getting the apples ready.  This recipe suggests Granny Smith apples, but I think any crisp firm baking apple will do quite well.  Really just depends on what you prefer.

Once your apples are all set, mix the brown sugar and cinnamon together and then add in the sliced apples.  Give a good toss until the apples are fully coated. 

Go ahead and sample a few...
Pour the apples onto your pre-made pie crust (or if you're an overachiever, a homemade pie crust).  I err-ed on the side of overfilling, which I think was a good call in the end.  These are tightly arranged, and I did have some extras, so just fill it until it's full and eat the rest.  

I am trying to get artsy with my camera shots.... what do you think?

Now it's time to get to work on what will become a delicious crumbly crust.  Chop up your sticks of butter into pieces.  Slightly chilled will work best.  

Combine flour, sugar and butter pieces in a bowl.  Now it's time to drop the dainty act, get down to business and make some delicious crumbly crust.  Get your hands in there and get to mixing.  You want to combine until the mixture is crumbly.  It takes a bit, you really needs to dig down and make sure you got the flour and sugar mixed up completely.

Keep going until it looks like this.  VOILA!
At this point, it's time to top the pie with the crumbly mixture.  

Aren't you excited!!?!?!?
Put this baby in the oven at 450 degrees for 20 minutes.  After 20 minutes, reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees.  Bake until the crust is golden brown and the apples are tender.  

By the time this baby had baked and cooled to appropriate temperature (at least 20 minutes), it was time to have a piece.  Just one.  Just a sliver.  Just a little something tasty before heading on into bed.  

Aren't you proud of my apple pie in "moderation"?

Yum.  The crumbly crust has molded into one crispy, tasty topping.  The apples were soften than I would have liked, but the flavor was awesome.  The pre-made pie crust tasted exactly like you might expect a pre-made pie crust to taste (you can also skip the bottom crust if you want, just spray the pan appropriately).  Last time I made an apple pie, the pie filling spread out all over the place when I cut into it, but this one was perfection.  

mmmm.... happy fall to me.

calories:  bad news bears.  it's apple pie - just eat it and love it in moderation.

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