Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Easy As Pie

Good morning, Kitschies!!  How's your day?  Mine is being spent at home with the boys because we're having some daycare issues.  I'm not going to get in to that now, but let's just say that I feel a change coming.  Anyway...the weather has certainly cooled off compared to a week ago.  Just last week we were having temps close to 90* and today we wore jeans and sweatshirts to the park!  I love this time of year (minus the balloons).  The cooler temps, the food - it's all good!! 

Today's recipe is no exception!  While at the library a couple weeks ago, I borrowed the Better Homes & Gardens New Cookbook, limited edition pink plaid cookbook.  I think everybody has the red plaid book, well, except for me, so this pink book grabbed my attention.  And, it's rather fitting that I chose that considering that October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. 
This cookbook has a special section in the back for healthy living.  It has some good tips and some yummy-looking recipes.  But, I wasn't on a mission to start healthy living this time.  I was on a mission to use some awesome Fall apples.  Let's look at what I found.

Apple Pie
1 recipe for double-crust pie
6 cups thinly sliced, peeled cooking apples (about 2 1/4 lbs)
1 Tbsp lemon juice (optional)
3/4 cup sugar
2 Tbsp all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 cup dried cranberries (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 375*.  Prepare and roll out pastry for double-crust pie.  Line a 9-inch pie plate with pastry circle.

2. If desired, sprinkle apples with lemon juice.  In a large bowl stir together sugar, flour, cinnamon and nutmeg.  Add apple slices, and, if desired, cranberries.  Gently toss until coated.

3. Transfer apple mixture to pastry-lined pie plate.  Trim bottom pastry to edge of pie plate.  Cut slits in remaining pastry circle; place on filling and seal.  Crimp edge as desired.

4. If desired, brush top pastry with milk and sprinkle with additional sugar.  To prevent over-browning, cover edge of pie with foil.  Bake for 40 minutes.  Remove foil.  Bake 20 minutes more or until fruit is tender and filling is bubbly.  Cool on a wire rack.  To serve warm, let pie cool for at least 2 hours.

NOTES:  I took the easy way out and used store-bought pie dough.  I don't own a rolling pin and having made pie crust from scratch, I can tell you it's worth the cost to buy pre-made dough.  I used Granny Smith apples.  I did use the lemon AND the cranberries.  I like the tiny touch of tart they lend to the pie. 

I have no idea how many apples were actually used in the end, but this sure made a heaping pie!  Good thing they cook down.  The apples are so good mixed with the sugar and spices!

Ready to be baked!  Our family has a tradition of baking a *bunch* of pies for Christmas.  A group of the womenfolk get together a morning before Christmas and make pie after pie after pie.  We're talking 20 or more pies!  Anyway, along with making dough from scratch, we learned how to make the crimped edges and the vents on top.  And let me tell you - crimping the edges with long fingernails is not fun.
It kinda looks like my pie is wearing a foil hat to ward off an alien invasion.  But it's not.  I'll call this a pie hat - it helps protect the edge of the crust from getting too brown while allowing the inside to bake and the middle to brown.
Baked to perfection!  This smelled so good - I almost didn't want to wait til the hubs got home to dig in to it.  But, luckily for him, I did.
I had never made a double-crust apple pie before.  Usually the hubs prefers crumb-top apple pie, but I gave him the choice and he said "What the hell?  Let's go with double this time."  I was kinda surprised, but the man never ceases to surprise me.  The spices in this pie weren't too strong - I hate it when you bite in to an apple pie (or any kind of pie, for that matter) and you can't taste the apples.  Oh, and the crust came out perfectly browned with the aid of the pie hat.

Do you have a favorite pie?  Or even a favorite dessert?  This isn't my *favorite* dessert, but it's definitely up in the top 5.  I don't know what it is about cooking, but things always seem to taste better when somebody else makes it for you!

Well, I can hear Thing 2 has woken from his nap.  I guess that means my blogging session is over and it's time to feel the animals.  Have a great rest of your day!


Danielle said...

Mmm, the pie looks perfect! i might have to borrow this recipe, I want to make something for Thanksgiving over the weekend :)

Toesthattwinkle! said...

those pies look so good! mmmmm!

Tempera said...

Perfection it isn't easy to make a nice crust. That looks great. I love that cookbook and have used different versions thru the years. These are perfect gifts for anyone just starting to cook. I gave one to my younger daughter when she decided to start cooking.

Tempera said...

Opse forgot to ask what store bought brand of pie crust did you use?

Megan Harmeyer said...

@ Tempera - I don't *exactly* remember what brand, but it was either store brand or Pilsbury.

Mamarazzi said...

i stopped myself from licking the screen...that looks amazing!!

Stray Stitches said...

Your pie looks absolutely delicious! My favorite pie is Bumbleberry!

Lu said...

Neither the hubs nor I like cooked fruit pies, but we love pie crust. Next time I bake a pie, I'll remember to use a pie hat because I hate burned crust!

shortmama said...

I have the pink book too and love it!

Lacquer Ware for Tips and Toes said...

AWESOME. I don't ever make pie crust either. I feel that I'm a great baker but pie crust always eluded me. It didn't matter whose "fool proof recipe" was offered to wasn't fool proof enough cuz I could make it chewy and well, just kind of gross. I buy it. Its what you put in it that matters tho. Athoooo...I can get away with making my own pie crust for fried pies, but I haven't made those since I was a girl. I'm rambling...happy day!