Apple pie is best made from a firm apple but any apple will do if you don't have pie apples on hand. I found this good apple chart that will answer any questions you have on which apple to use for pie making. I'm using the apples from my mother-in-law's tree and they are certainly not pie apples. They break down to almost sauce when they are baked but we don't care because they taste so good baked in a pie. I freeze apple slices and find they hold up much better after being frozen. Who knew? But the apples are ripe and fresh right now so I'll take my chances with the soft apples. Anyway, there's nothing worse than taking a bite of apple pie and finding the apples hard and undercooked.
Whatever apple you use, the method of making apple pie doesn't vary much. Some people like to cook their pie filling before putting it in the crust, especially if the apples are a very firm variety, but most recipes have you pile the raw apple slices in the pie crust with the sugar and spices and let the oven do it's job.
What a wonderful fragrance is wafting across my nose as I type. The pies are baking and the sweet aroma of apples, cinnamon and nutmeg are filling the air, making my mouth water in anticipation of the first juicy apple pie of the season.
1 double 9-inch pie crust, homemade or purchased
6-8 apples, peeled, cored and sliced, about 6 cups
½ -¾ cup sugar, may use part brown and white mixed
½ teaspoon cinnamon or more to taste
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
1½ teaspoons cornstarch, if apples are very juicy
1 tablespoon butter, optional
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Make or purchase a double pie crust. Line a 9-inch pie plate with pie crust. Have the top crust ready to roll out when the apples are in the bottom crust. You will find a recipe for pie crust here if you would like to make homemade.
Peel, core and slice apples. You will need about 6 cups of apples for a 9-inch pie. Pile the apples in the unbaked pie shell. In a small bowl, mix together the sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and cornstarch if using. If you are using very sweet apples, you may want to use the smaller amount of sugar. Sprinkle the sugar mixture over the apples. Dot with butter if you wish.
Roll out the top crust. Moisten the top edge of the bottom crust with a little water. This will help "glue" the top and bottom crusts together. Lay the top crust over the apples and press to seal to the bottom crust. Trim any large overhanging pieces of pastry to within an inch of the edge of the pie plate. Turn under the edges of the pastry and flute around to make a fancy edge. Cut several slashes on the top crust to vent the steam. Place the prepared pie in the preheated oven.
Bake 20 minutes at 400 degrees. Lower the heat to 375 degrees and bake an additional 25 minutes until apples are bubbling and crust is golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool in pie dish. Serve warm or cold, with or without ice cream. Apple Pie is also delicious served with a custard sauce.
Makes 1 9-inch pie, about 6-8 servings.
Lay the top crust over the apples and press to seal. Trim any overhanging pastry to within an inch of the edge of the pie plate. Turn under the overhanging pastry edges. Flute the edge to give a fancy finish. Make a few slashes in the top of the pie to vent the steam.
Bake the pies until golden brown and bubbly. I made four smaller pies instead of two larger ones. I'll freeze three of them for another meal.
Apple Pie ready to cut and serve.
A cut of pie with a scoop of ice cream a.k.a. Apple Pie à la mode.
Or, how about a slice of pie with a drizzle of vanilla custard.