I love apple pies. There is something so homey about apple pies, so satisfying with a cup of warm tea. When Little Thumbs Up ingredient for this month is Apples, I just knew that I'll be making an Apple Pie.
First, make the pastry. The pastry is a little soft and slightly sticky, not really that easy to handle. I can barely position the first piece in the centre to cover the base of the pie pan, but with a little dusting of flour, it is easier to handle. The pastry uses a whole egg which is whisked lightly before adding to to the flour-butter mixture, the next time I would not put in the whole egg, and would instead add in a tablespoon at a time until the pastry dough comes together. The cold water is not needed at all, as the pastry is already soft and slightly sticky.
The top of the pastry, with some lines on it (oops...!), as I've used a plastic sheet to transfer the dough, and they are the creases mark, from the plastic.
Bake in a preheated oven at 200C for 40-45 minutes, turning the position halfway through for even baking.
Slice and enjoy. The pastry is buttery and flaky, and the apple filling is lovely. Though I usually love eating apples pies while they are still warm, this is pretty good when eaten at room temperature, when it has cooled down for several hours. The pastry remains just as tender and flaky, and the flavours of the apples gets better. Very nice with a cup of warm tea.
(adapted from "Mastering The Art of Baking", Anneka Manning)
2 quantities sweet shortcrust pastry (* refer below)
1 egg, lightly whisked
1 tablespoon sugar, to sprinkle
vanilla ice cream or whipping cream, to serve
2 lb 10 oz granny smith apples
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1/4 cup ground almonds
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
finely shredded zest of 1 lemon
- Make the 2 quantities of pastry separately and place in the refrigerator to rest, as directed.
- To make the filling, peel the apples, cut into quarters and cut away the core. Slice each quarter into wedges about 3/4 inch thick. Put the apples in a large, deep frying pan with the lemon juice, cover with a tight-fitting lid and cook over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, for 5-7 minutes or until just soft. Transfer the apples to a colander and set aside to drain and cool to room temperature.
- Meanwhile, use a rolling pin to roll out each pastry disc between 2 sheets of nonstick parchment paper to 1/8 inch thick. Place one portion on a large baking sheet, still between the paper, and refrigerate until required. Use the remaining pastry to line a 1-3/4 inch deep, round 8-1/2 inch pie pan, easing it gently into the base and allowing it to overhang the top edge (do not trim). Place on a baking sheet and refrigerate until required.
- Preheat the oven to 400F/Gas 6. When the apples have cooled, remove the pastry shell and the rolled pastry from the refrigerator. Sprinkle the ground almonds over the base of the pastry shell. Put the apples in a large bowl, add the combined sugar and spices, and the lemon zest, and gently fold through to combine.
- Spoon the apple mixture into the pastry shell, then brush the edges of the pastry with the egg. Peel the paper away from the rolled pastry and invert the pastry on top of the pie, over the apples. Remove the paper on top and gently press the edges of the pastry to seal, then trim with a sharp knife around the outside edge of the pan. Press and fold the pastry back inside the rim of the pan. Brush the top with egg and sprinkle with the sugar. Cut a small cross in the top of the pie to allow steam to escape.
- Bake for 25 minutes, then turn the pie around in the oven to ensure even cooking and bake for a further 20 minutes or until the pastry is cooked through and deep golden. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream or cream.
Sweet Shortcrust Pastry
1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup confectioners' sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
4-1/2 oz chilled unsalted butter, cubed
1 egg, lightly whisked
chilled water (optional)
- Sift the flour, confectioners' sugar, and salt together into a large bowl. With your palms facing upwards, use your fingertips to rub in the butter, lifting the flour mixture up as you rub to aerate it, until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.
- Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients. Add the whisked egg and use a flat-bladed knife to gradually incorporate until a coarse dough forms, adding a little water if necessary.
- Press the dough together - it should be soft, but not sticky. Turn it out onto a lightly floured, cool work surface and lightly knead a few times, until the dough is smooth.4
- Shape the dough into a disc and then wrap in plastic wrap. Place in the refrigerator for 30 minutes to rest before rolling out and using as desired.
I'm linking this post to Little Thumbs Up event, organized by Bake For Happy Kids and My Little Favourite D.I.Y. and hosted this month by I-Lost in Austen