Hey guess what? It’s another apple pie! As you might know, I’ve made a few before. In case you’re wondering, I didn’t make this because I forgot I made it before, quite the contrary. I made it for a friend. We worked together, and he was leaving to go to our company’s LA office. When I found out he was leaving I told him I would make something for him for his goodbye party. I said I could make him any dessert he wanted. He asked for apple pie.
Now if you recall, one of those previous apple pies I made (well two actually) were ones I made for work. So he’s had my apple pie before. I told him I could totally make that for him, but it didn’t have to be that. I said that I make other stuff, and he could have whatever he wanted: cookies, cake, pie, whatever. He said apple pie was his favorite dessert, and he really wanted me to make that for him. I understood. Sure, I said, apple pie it is.
We were having the goodbye party on a Tuesday. Sunday night I made the crust. Last time I made this recipe, it filled two of the aluminum pie dishes I had. Since I only needed one pie, I made half a recipe. It looked so small. A normal recipe isn’t too bad, the slab pie was one and a half times the recipe, but this half a recipe seemed like almost nothing. As usual, it was very easy to put the crust together. There was just a few ingredients and one bowl. Minimal time and cleanup. When I was done, I split it into two and stuck it in the fridge to chill.
Monday night, the night before the festivities, I made the pie. I stopped at the corner store to get some apples. After dinner I set about making it. Since I was already comfortable with the recipe, I played a little fast and loose with the directions. To fit the pie dish, I only made a half recipe of the filling as well.
I started on the apples first, as that usually takes a long time. I washed them, but I forgot to peel them before coring them. Then instead of cutting them, I used our food processor with a 6mm blade. (6mm is about 1/4 inch, which is the size called for in the recipe.) This is how I’m going to make all future apple pies. Normally making an apple pie is so labor intensive, what with peeling, coring, and chopping all the apples. This was so much easier.
I used about a pound of Granny Smith apples and a little over 3/4 pound of McIntosh apples. When I bought the apples, I had just guessed at the amounts. I had another McIntosh, but rather than cut up half an apple, I decided to go with the amount of full apples that was closest.
This wasn’t too long after my last baking extravaganza, so I had some lemon juice leftover from making the glaze for the cherry slab pie. I used that and zested a lemon which I still had. After mixing those into the apples, I rolled out the dough.
I wasn’t exact, but rather I just guessed at the dough size, and I was pretty close. Since this was a smaller pie plate, I knew the dough didn’t have to be quite as big. After mixing the spices into the apples, it smelled like apple pie. I poured the apple mixture into the pie plate with the dough. It looked like a little too much, but I piled it up in the middle like they suggested. And it worked out okay.
I rolled out the second piece of dough. Again I wasn’t being too exact. I guessed, and it was a pretty good guess. I used scraps from the first piece to fill in a couple of spots on the crust which needed it. (Some of the apples were kinda poking through on the top.) I folded up the dough and fluted it. I was very happy with the fluting. I impressed myself a bit. I guess I’m getting better, what with the rolling and guessing the right size and the fluting and such.
I cut slits in the top. I used heavy cream as a wash (leftover from the cherry slab pie and teddy bear hot tub s’mores) instead of an egg wash. I didn’t have any eggs handy and I didn’t want to get any just for this. (Thank you internet for the tip.) I didn’t measure how much, I just guessed. I sprinkled it with sugar, again using half. I figured that since it was a smaller and shallower pie, it would still make sense to use half, even though the surface area of the pie wasn’t half.
I followed the instructions for baking temperature, although I didn’t put the sheet in the oven ahead of time. I just put it in when I put in the pie. I covered the baking sheet with foil, too, just to be safe. Since the pie was a little bit smaller, I cooked it on the shorter side. The first round was about 22 minutes. I rotated the pan 180 degrees and cooked it for the second round, about 28 minutes.
I could smell it all along the way. It smelled awesome. And after it was all said and done, it looked fantastic. I could see the juices bubbling, although not bubbling over this time. The crust was a nice color. I could see steam rising up. Wow, it was a nice looking pie. I put it on a cooling rack to cool. It was done around midnight.
At this point, I’d like to say a big thank you to my wife who again did the cleanup both along the way and at the end. Thanks, hon! It saved me a lot of work.
I took the pie in to work the next day. We actually didn’t get to it until the day after. (Turns out crowded bars aren’t always the best places for pie.) When we did get to it, people ate it up. They ate it up so quickly, I didn’t really have a chance to take pictures of how it looked on the inside. In any case, it was delicious and thoroughly enjoyed by all. It was on par with any of my previous apple pies. And my friend was happy with the send off.
How happy? Well, we have regular conference calls with our LA office. Word has now travelled there about my apple pie. The LA office is all abuzz, and they keep asking about making a pie for them. Will I bring them one? Will I send them one? The pie has now taken on mythic proportions.
Do you have a recipe that people like so much they ask you to make it again and again? Do you have a favorite dessert you make over and over? What’s your signature dish?