Saturday, October 17, 2009

Apple Pie is in my eye

A week ago was Jordan's birthday. Due to the unfortunate timing of the Food and Wine festival Jordan's birthday celebration was a bit delayed. Thus this weekend I made his annual pie. Yes, the kid does not really care for cake and cookies but would rather have a fruit pie. I am not one to argue on some one's birthday wishes so I smile and whip up a pie. It's fall and Jordan's favorite is apple.

I grew up with a nice little apple pealing gadget. It was an old school contraption that you set on the table with a seal, stick the apple on, and turn the handle. It as not 100% perfect all of the time but it sure did make the pealing process speed by. I have no such gadget in my little apartment so I had to do the manual method. Its really not so bad once you get the knack for it.
I think you can use just about any recipe for apple pie. Really if you think about it there are only 5 or so ingredients: pie crust, apples, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, lemon juice and flour. I do however have two tricks I like to use when making pie.
First, I always use two types of apples a sweet juicy version (gala, Fuji, honeycrisp) ones you like to eat and then a tarter version (Granny smith). Not only do you get two different flavors going on but you also have two different textures. The tart apples have a firmer texture and will hold their shape when cooking better than the juicier apples.
Second, I assemble the pie first with a bit of the dry sugar concoction, add apples firmly stacking them into the crust, and then add the rest of the dry ingredients before adding the second crust. (To me, fruit pies have a bottom crust and a top crust, none of this crumb topping here.) This allows for the sugar to bubble at the bottom with apple juices but also seep through from the top.
To me fruit pie is more of a breakfast pastry than desert but there you go. Apple pie in the fall.

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