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April 30, 2018 | by  | in Food |
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Apple Pie

As the sun starts setting at 5:45 and the mornings start off frostier than usual, my diet begins to look like a bear getting ready for hibernation. Lots of sugar, fats and carbs are going to pop up in the next few recipes, and this one isn’t an exception. Desserts have always been a winter thing for me; sometimes dinner doesn’t cut it, and getting an extra meal in before settling down for the night helps build that body fat that saves the heating bills. Also, if you’re getting a package from the fruit and veg co-op every Thurs (which you totally should) you’ll have a surplus of apples. 

Pastry

200g Flour — $0.20

125g Butter — $1.50

A pinch of salt < $0.10

1/3 cup chilled water — zilch

Apple Filling

5-6 cored and chopped apples — $4

3 pinches of Cinnamon < $0.10

3 pinches of Nutmeg < $0.10

1/2 lemon of lemon juice — $0.50

1/2 cup of sugar — $0.50

1/2 cup of water — nada

As the pastry needs to be chilled for 30 mins, it’s best to make the pastry and chill it while the apples are cooking. Measure out your flour into the bowl and mix the salt through. Chop up the butter into small bits and then grate the butter into the flour. It does sound weird but using cold and grated butter is the best way to make the pastry. Incorporate the butter and the flour together and slowly add the cold water. You’ll want to add the water bit by bit as it could easily become too saturated and porridgy. Bring the dough into a ball and cover it with glad wrap. You really want to avoid over kneading it, so handle it carefully. To chill it, some people place the dough into a pie tin and weight the bottom down with dried beans to help its shape. However you can chill it as a ball.

For the filling, core and chop 5 or 6 apples. Different apple species have different flavors and sweetness; a good bet is Granny Smith. Place a saucepan on the stovetop and bring it up to a medium temperature. Place all the ingredients in the pot and stir occasionally, keeping an eye on the sugar which could burn. When the kitchen begins to smell like apples the sauce should be ready — it takes about 20 mins. The apples need to be soft and properly mixed through the sauce. If the sauce is quite runny and it doesn’t look quite right, try adding small amounts of cornflour while mixing the sauce. That should help it thicken up. Alternatively you could add more sugar, as long as you remember to brush your teeth afterwards. When it’s finished, take it off the heat and place the sauce in a bowl to help it cool down.

Roll out your dough into a circle about 5 cm wider than your pie tin. Gently lay it into the tin, and push it into the corners right up to the edge of the tin. Grab a butter knife and run it around the edge of the tin to trim the loose pastry. Fill the pie with the sauce. If you have dough left over, the traditional pattern is criss crossed pastry strips on top of the apple. To make the pastry on top look nice and golden, it’s a good idea to brush it with beaten egg lightly.  However I like thinly sliced raw apples, layered on top of the sauce with salt sprinkled on top. Pop the pie in the oven at 190 about 20 mins before you have dinner, so by the time you’re ready for dessert, it’s pie-ping hot. It should take 40 to 50 mins, a good way to check is to tap the pastry and see if it crunches. If you have patterned the pastry on top, then that should have a nice golden colour.

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