What a great weekend of doing basically nothing (which worked out for me since I spent many hours in serious ulcer related pain! UGH!) BUT... I also got to spend some quality time with my little family and relax. One of my favorite "relax" activities is baking!
Today I wanted to share what I believe is the very best apple pie recipe...in the world.
I based this recipe (the filling & topping) on The Pioneer Woman's "Dreamy Apple Pie" because... let's get real. Ree knows what she is doing. I just made a few changes that I have found better suit my baking style :)
the BEST apple pie
4 Granny Smith apples, peeled. I prefer to use my peeler and peel the WHOLE apple into thin slices as opposed to chopping it up. It makes the pie that much more delicious!
2 TB flour
1/2 c brown sugar
1/2 c (overflowing) sugar
1 c and 2 TB heavy whipping cream
3 tsp vanilla extract (not imitation!)
1/8 tsp cinnamon
7 TB cold butter, chopped into pieces
3/4 C all purpose flour
1/2 c brown sugar
1/2 c pecans
Sea salt (to taste, depending on how much you like!)
2 sticks unsalted butter (COLD!)
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
1/4 cup ice water
(this makes 2 single layer pie crusts or 1 double pie crust!)
Alright! Here's what you do. First, I make the pie crust! This is because it has to be refrigerated for an hour. So...
1. Put the flour, salt and sugar in your food processor and pulse just a few times to combine the dry ingredient.
2. Toss in your cut up chunks of cold butter. Pulse just until coarse. There can still be some pea sized chunks of butter, this is fine!
3. Sprinkle the ice water over your mix. Pulse again a few times. Take the lid off and check it out... it will look course, but when you squeeze between fingers it (should) stick together. If it's not doing that yet, add a little more ice water. Pulse until you find this consistency.
4. Take half of the mix and press it together. I then put it on plastic wrap, push down into a disk, wrap up and throw it in the freezer/refrigerator. You can do the same with the rest, it will save up to 3 months in freezer!
While my dough is chilling I prepare the filling and topping.
1. In a large bowl, mix together heavy whipping cream, flour, cinnamon, sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract.
2. Peel the apples. First peel off the skin and get rid of it. Then peel the apples directly into the bowl. Mix until apples are coated.
3. In food processor: pulse together butter, flour, brown sugar, salt and pecans. JUST until coarse and chunky. You want it to remain spreadable :) (This is your topping)
Now.. preheat your oven to 375 degrees
Take out the disk of pie dough and set it on wax paper. Smash it down. Put another piece of wax paper on top. Roll out to the best of your ability with rolling pin, over the wax paper (mine never ends up being a perfect circle. No worries, it will still work).
Peel back the wax paper and then lay the pie crust onto the bottom of pie pan (9 inch works great! I like to use a deeper pan for apple pie as well!) Push down into bottom of pan and then peel off top wax paper. From here you can correct any areas with your fingers and make the edges all even. Or pretty, whatever suits your fancy!
Pour the filling in over pie crust.
Pour topping evenly over the filling.
Your pie should now look like this:
Put your ready-to-bake pie pan on a cookie sheet. Loosely lay a piece of tin foil over the top of the pie.
Bake for 1 hour (or until the topping is golden brown!) I remove the foil for the last 20 minutes of baking.
And.. finished product! Now, it is my service to tell you that apple pie should ALWAYS be served warm and with vanilla ice cream. But maybe that is just my preference? You be the judge :)