Happy Thanksgiving! I have been in the kitchen with my sleeves rolled up all weekend and loving it. It really is my happy place. Dinner wasn’t even hosted at my house and I was still excited to get cooking. Thanksgiving dinner this year was with cousins and friends out in the country and as anyone who attended can attest, it was a spread fit for royalty!
We feasted on our traditional turkey dinner that my cousins and I grew up on with essentials like Nana’s dressing and Siby’s carrots with a few new dishes thrown in the mix. Even though we were all uncomfortably full afterwards, we managed to gobble down at least one piece of my homemade apple pie before the games and drinks made their debut.
After two failed attempts at a candy corn recipe earlier this week, I needed to dial it back a notch and what better way to redeem myself than with a classic; apple pie! Nothing says tradition like a homemade pie! Apple pies were always a staple in my grandmother’s kitchen growing up (blueberry and lemon weren’t far behind) so it only seemed right to finish of our delicious meal with a slice.
I have made quite a few pies in the last few years but each time seems to be a new learning curve. I knew I wanted to have a decorative crust however handling and kneading the dough too much will leave it tough and less flaky so I do recommend trying to nail it on your first try if you can! Also, if you go for the deep dish pie plate, cut your apples slightly smaller so they are tender enough once baked; I personally don’t enjoy hard apples in a pie. In addition, if doing the decorative top crust, keep in mind how much filling is in the pie to judge how close together you lay your designs for a good crust-to-filling ratio. Once baked the designs in the crust will become less noticeable.
Some apples are more pie-friendly than others, personally MacIntosh apples are my favorite but really only because I have watched generations of women before me peeling heaps of MacIntosh apples to put into their pies and not once have I been disappointed. Stick with what you know! Granny smith is a close second and is quite pie worthy as well.
I truly am blessed to come from a family that makes time for each other. Yesterday’s dinner was just another example of how we value our traditions and I am so appreciative to have such beautiful ladies like Janna, Melissa and Megan to anchor these with me for Mairead. Lots of love for you gals. Grateful. Thankful. Blessed.
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp salt
3/4 cup butter, chilled and cut into cubes
1/2 cup all-vegetable shortening
6-8 tbsp ice cold water
In large bowl combine flour, salt, butter and shortening until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
Sprinkle cold water over mixture and mix until dough forms a ball (do not over mix).
Divide dough into two balls, shape into two round discs, flour lightly and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 1 hour.
Lay dough on a clean, floured surface and with a rolling pin roll dough from the center out, lifting and re-positioning the dough every few rolls to prevent sticking until dough is approximately 10-12 inches in diameter (or large enough for your desired pie plate)
Carefully lift the dough and fit it into the pie plate. If the dough separates you can “patch” it up by pressing it back together with a few drops of water.
Pour in your pie filling.
Prepare the top crust by rolling out the dough the same as the first. If doing a traditional looking crust, lay it on top and trim leaving an inch overhang. Now fold the edge of the top dough underneath the edge of the bottom dough and press together with fingers or a fork. If doing a lattice or other design be sure to seal together where the top layer of dough meets the bottom.
Using a sharp knife pierce a few “vents” into the top of the pie crust to allow steam to escape.
Bake for 40-50 minutes at 400 degrees until crust is lightly golden.
Apple Pie Filling
6 apples, peeled and chopped
2 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 cup sugar
2 tbsp flour
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
2 tbsp butter
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Add apples to a large bowl and drizzle with lemon juice. Add sugar, flour, cinnamon and nutmeg and mix until apples are coated.
Pour mixture into prepared pie crust. Drop the dollops of butter on top of the filling.
Place the top crust over the filling and seal the edges. Bake according to my pie crust instructions above. Enjoy!
By Three Happy Folk