Apple pie

Here is my favorite apple pie recipe! Foolproof, and time-tested, she won’t let you down. Please follow carefully all of the chilling instructions, which may seem fussy but are imperative to creating a “shrink proof” crust. Happy Baking!

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Apple Pie

For the crust

All the ingredients must be cold to avoid a tough crust. Chill the flour in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes. The butter pieces should be chilled in the freezer for 10 minutes before use.

  • 2 cup plus 2 tablespoon (320 g) flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 cup (2 stick, 230 g) butter, chilled and cut into 1 cm pieces
  • 4 to 7 tablespoons ice water
  • 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar

For the filling

  • 8 large granny smith apples
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar (plus more, for sprinkling)
  • 1 teaspoon freshly-squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon cloves
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten with 1 teaspoon of water

For the crust: In a food processor with a metal blade, briefly pulse together the flour, salt and sugar. Add the butter and quickly pulse until chunks are the size of peas.

Add vinegar and smallest amount ice water, and pulse briefly. Mixture will be powdery but should hold together when pinched. Add more water and pulse again if necessary.

Transfer to a plastic bag and briefly knead from outside of bag until mixture holds together. Divide dough evenly and form into two balls, wrap with plastic and flatten into disks. Refrigerate at least 1 hour (preferably overnight).

Remove one disk of dough from the refrigerator, discard plastic wrap and transfer to a clean surface lightly dusted with flour. Roll out into a 12 inch round and transfer to a 9-inch pie plate, leaving a 1/2 inch overhang. Cover with plastic wrap and chill in refrigerator for at least 30 minutes, or in the freezer for at least 15 minutes.

For the filling: Peel and core the apple, and cut into 1/4 inch thick slices. Transfer to a large bowl and mix with sugar, lemon juice, salt and spices. Set aside to marinate for at least 30 minutes, then strain and collect juices into a small saucepan. Place saucepan over medium heat, add butter and let boil until the mixture becomes thick and syrupy, and begins to caramelize, about 5 minutes. Swirl the pan often, but do not mix. Meanwhile, stir the cornstarch into the apples until you can’t see it anymore. Pour the caramel over the apples and stir well. Scoop the apple mixture into the cold pie crust, creating a mound in the center.

Roll out the second disk of pie crust, and carefully lay it over the apples. Trim to have a 1/2 inch overhang, and press to seal with the bottom crust, then fold it under so it is level with the edge of the pie pan. Press with a fork or crimp with fingers to seal tightly. Cut 4 perpendicular steam vents into the top crust and transfer to the freezer to chill for 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 215°C. Brush the top of the pie with egg wash and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of sugar. Cook directly on the bottom of the oven, or on the lowest rack for 45-55 minutes, or until the juices are bubbling and the crust is nicely browned. If it browns to quickly, you can cover the top with a sheet of aluminum foil. Serve the apple pie warm with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream.

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