Pumpkin pie, pecan pie, apple pie...especially the most awesome pie in the whole world:
French Apple Pie!
My mouth is watering just thinking about it. Thanks to my Mom for introducing us to this wonderous creation. This fall I have found that it is especially delicious when made using fresh, local apples. Specifically, Mutsu, Granny Smith, Red Delicious, or a combination of varieties. I would love to taste a pie made completely with the super-tasty Arkansas Black apples, but I only have a few and they are so good fresh!
If you have "The Gift" like my Mom, you can make your own pie pastry. For the rest of us, the pre-rolled Pillsbury pie crusts are pretty darn good! Here is how you can make your own 8 little slices of heaven from Betty Crocker's recipe circa 1978:
French Apple Pie
Pastry for a 9" pie
3/4 c. Sugar
1/4 c. All-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. Ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp. Ground cinnamon
Dash of salt
6 c. thinly sliced tart apples (about 6 medium)
1 c. All-purpose flour
1/2 c. Packed brown sugar
1/2 c. Firm margarine or butter
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Line 9" pie plate with pastry.
Combine dry ingredients for pie filling in a large bowl; add apples and stir to coat.
Turn into pastry-lined pie plate.
Combine Crumb Topping ingredients with a pastry blender or fork until crumbly.
Spread evenly over apples.
Bake for 50 minutes, cover topping with foil for the last 10 minutes of baking.
Best served warm.
- I am not a huge nutmeg fan, so I use about 3/4 tsp. of cinnamon and 1/4 tsp. nutmeg in the filling.
- I put the apples in the pastry about a cup at a time and spread them out to evenly cover the pastry and to lay flat. (Purely aesthetic and obsessive, re. Me).
- I add salt and cinnamon to the topping as well. About 1/8 tsp and 1/4 tsp., respectively. Maybe a dash of nutmeg, too.
- Any apple will do. This pie is perfectly delightful when using Red Delicious (when the Produce Box provides you with 16 of them in one week!) However, it does take on a completely different attitude when tart apples are used. It's up to you.
- A surprisingly tasty pie resulted from me forgetting to put the salt in the apple filling. I sprinkled it on top of the (Red Delicious) apples and added some salt in the Crumb Topping for good measure. There was a great contrast between the sweet, spicy apples and slightly salty topping that was really nice.
Enjoy! And remember:
Who needs cake when you can have pie?!?