Apple pie recipes differ from one country to another, yet, this classic fall desserts brings memories from childhood, lazy Sunday mornings and the aroma from Grandma’s kitchen. The apple pie is versatile. It can be served everywhere and it is beautiful, tasty and inexpensive. The varieties of apple pie differ primarily in the use of one or other type of dough. From classic crust, to strudel, filo pastry, puff pastry, cake batter, etc.
The season of apples is coming, time to prepare apple preserves, jams and bake pies with apples. Of course, someone might think that apple pie is boring and old fashioned, you will not surprise anyone with such a simple dish, especially now when apples can be bought in the supermarket at all time.
Apple pie basics – tips and tricks for beginners
As easy as it is to make an apple pie, there are some little secrets and tricks that guarantee you a perfect pie crust and to prevent your pie from getting watery. One of the questions that people most often ask is:
What are the best apples for apple pie?
For the perfect apple pie you need apples that are firm and hold their shape, with a balanced sweet-tart flavor. Granny Smith are the classic choice for apple pies because they have a firm flesh that does not break down and a tangy and tart taste. Golden Delicious, Gala, Red Delicious, Jonagold, Cortland, Honey crisp, Fuji varieties are also suitable for apple pies.
The most common reasons for a soggy pie crust are a moist filling and low oven temperature, which melts the fat in the pastry instead of baking the crust. Make sure that your filling is not too moist and follow the baking temperature instructions in the recipe. You can pre-cook the filling to evaporate the excess moisture.
You can add a very thin sprinkling of flour (or crashed butter cookies) on top of your bottom crust. This layer will absorb the excess liquid in the filling.
Another technique to release the steam from the apples inside the pie is to cut holes in the upper crust. When you release the steam your crust will be crisp and flaky.
Many prefer a lattice pie top instead of a solid one. The space between the strips provides the necessary ventilation. You can try and make a “Dutch” apple pie which is a single-crust pie topped with a mixture of butter, flour and sugar.
Finally, let the pie cool completely before serving. While the pie cools, the filling will solidify.
How to store apple pie?
You need to allow the apple pie cool completely before storing it. Cover the pie with plastic wrap and store at room temperature. It will stay fresh for up to two days. If you want to freeze an apple pie, place it in the freezer uncovered until frozen, then wrap it in plastic foil and return them into the freezer. Thaw the pie at room temperature for an hour and then reheat in the oven at 375°F/190°C for 35 to 40 minutes.
Apple pie recipes to try at home – Classic Apple Pie
For the crust:
- 2 ½ cups flour(315 g)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 ½ sticks butter, cold and cubed
- 8 tablespoons ice water, or as needed
For the filling:
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour, for thickening
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 6 to 8 apples, peeled and thinly sliced
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
For the egg wash:
- 1 egg
Prepare the crust:
Combine flour, salt, and sugar into a food processor and pulse until well combined.
Add the butter cubes and pulse.
Add two tablespoons of ice cold water and pulse several times. Add more ice water, slowly, a teaspoon at a time, pulsing several times after each addition, until the mixture just barely begins to clump together.
Place the crumbly mixture on the countertop. Press down 4 to 6 times, smoothing the mixture . This will make your crust extra flaky.
Shape the dough into a dick and wrap it in plastic wrap. Refrigerate at least 1 hour.
Prepare the filling:
In a bowl, add the sliced apples, sugar, flour, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and lemon juice.
Mix until combined and all apples are coated.
Assemble the pie:
Preheat the oven to 375°F (200°C).
Remove the dough from the refrigerator and let it sit for 10 to 15 minutes. Place the dough on a lightly floured surface and cut in half. Roll out both halves until round and about ⅛-inch (3 mm) thick.
Roll the dough around the rolling pin and unroll onto a pie dish making sure the dough reaches all edges. Trim extra if necessary.
Pour in apple filling mixture and pat down.
Roll the other half of the dough on top.
Trim the extra dough and pinch the edges to seal them together.
Brush the pie with the beaten egg.
Cut four slits in the top of the pie to create a vent.
Bake for 50-60 minutes or until the crust is golden brown.
Allow to cool completely before slicing.
Dutch Apple Pie
For the crust:
- 1cup all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon shortening
- 2 to 3 tablespoons cold water
For the Filling:
- 8 cups sliced cored peeled apples
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- ½ cup unsalted butter, softened
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 2/3 cup packed brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
In medium bowl, mix 1 cup flour and the salt. Add shortening and sprinkle with cold water, 1 tablespoon at a time, tossing with fork until all flour is moistened and pastry almost leaves side of bowl. Gather pastry into a ball. Shape into a disk on lightly floured surface. Wrap the pastry in plastic wrap and refrigerate about 45-60 minutes until dough is firm and cold, yet pliable.
Heat oven to 400°F/200°C.
Roll pastry dough on a lightly floured surface into circle 2 inches larger than 9-inch pie plate. Transfer pastry in pie plate pressing firmly against bottom and side. Trim overhanging edge of pastry 1 inch from rim of pie plate.
Mix the filling ingredients into a bowl and pour into the pie plate.
In medium bowl mix butter, 1 cup flour and the brown sugar until a crumb forms. Sprinkle evenly over top of pie. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon granulated sugar on top.
Bake 45 to 55 minutes or until pie crust and crumb topping are deep golden brown and filling begins to bubble. Transfer to cooling rack to cool.
Toffee apple pie recipe
For the pastry:
- 375g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
- 1½ tsp ground cinnamon
- a pinch of ground ginger
- 75g icing sugar
- 200g unsalted butter, cubed
- 1 large egg, beaten
For the filling:
- 1 kg apples, cored peeled and sliced
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 tsp flour
- 1 tbsp caster sugar
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp ground ginger
- ½ x 397g tin caramel
For the topping:
- 1 large egg, beaten, for glaze
- 1 tbsp demerara sugar
Prepare the filling ahead and chill until required. The baked pie can be frozen for up to 1 month. Defrost completely before reheating gently until warmed through.
Prepare the crust: Mix flour, spices, icing sugar and butter in a food processor and pulse until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Add the egg a little at a time, and mix. Once the mixture comes together into a ball, wrap and chill for 30-60 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 180°C.
Mix apples, lemon juice and cornflour in a pan. Heat gently and add the caster sugar and spices. Reduce the heat to very low and cook for 10 minutes, stirring regularly, then remove from the heat. Add the caramel and stir to coat the apples, then leave to cool.
Divide the pastry. Take ¾ of the pastry and set the other ¼ aside for the lattice. Roll out on a lightly floured surface to about 5mm thick to line a 24cm pie dish, with an overhang. Line with baking paper, fill with baking beans and blind-bake for 20 minutes. Remove the paper and beans and bake for another 10 minutes or until the pastry looks crisp and golden.
Once the base is baked, add the cooled filling.
Roll out the remaining pastry to a 5mm thickness and slice into strips about 1cm wide, long enough to reach right across the pie dish. Create a lattice over the pie using the strips, sticking them to the pastry with a bit of beaten egg. Trim off excess pastry, brush the top with beaten egg and sprinkle with demerara sugar.
Bake for 35-40 minutes on a baking tray until the pastry is golden brown and the filling is bubbling.
Let the pie cool before serving.
Mini Apple Berry Crumble Pies
- 1 pie crust, homemade or store bought
- 2 medium firm apples, peeled and cut into slices
- 1/3 cup light brown sugar
- 1 1/2 cup frozen berries (raspberries, blueberries)
- 4 tsp. tapioca flour
- 1/3 cup white sugar
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp. salt
For crumble topping:
- 1/2 cup rolled oats
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup light brown sugar
- 1/3 cup walnuts, chopped
- 6 tbsp unsalted butter, cold and cut into cubes
Line two 4-inch ceramic ramekins with rolled out pie crust. Press crust into ramekins and repair any tears with extra pie crust. Place in freezer until ready to fill pie.
Use a medium saucepan to combine apples and brown sugar. Cook over medium-low heat for about 10 minutes, until reduced and bubbling.
Drain most juice from apples, and add berries, tapioca flour, sugar, cinnamon, and salt and stir gently to combine.
Mix together all ingredients except butter. Add butter and cut into mixture with pastry cutter or fork until it resembles coarse crumbs.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F/190C.
Remove pie crust from freezer and add apple-berry filling until ramekin is full. Add generous handful of crumble topping by packing it on.
Bake for 25 minutes until the top of the pie turns golden brown. Tent with foil and bake for another 10 to 15 minutes until filling is bubbling.
Remove from oven and let cool for 15 minutes.
Gluten-free apple pie bars
For the crust:
- 3 cups almond flour
- 1 cup tapioca starch
- 1/3 cup coconut palm sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 8 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, diced
- 1 egg
For the filling:
- 6–7 medium apples
- 1/4 cup coconut palm sugar
- 1/4 cup tapioca starch
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
Make the crust and topping:
Preheat the oven to 350ºF/175C and lightly grease an 8×8 inch baking dish.
In the bowl of a food processor, pulse together the almond flour, tapioca starch, coconut sugar, vanilla, and salt.
Add the butter and pulse a few times to start breaking it up. Turn it on for a few seconds, until the butter is incorporated as coarse crumbs.
Add the egg and turn it on once more, until it just starts to come together.
Press half the mixture into the prepared baking dish. Transfer the rest to a bowl and refrigerate both the baking dish and the bowl, while you prepare the apples.
Prepare the apples:
Peel and core the apples and slice them about 1/8-inch thick.
In a large bowl, mix together the apples, coconut sugar, tapioca starch, lemon juice, and cinnamon. Toss with your hands until all the apple slices are well coated.
Remove the baking dish from the fridge and add in the apples. Crumble the dough you set aside on top covering as much of the apples as possible.
Bake for 55-70 minutes, or until the top is deep golden brown and the apples are tender. If the top starts to get too brown before the apples are tender, cover loosely with aluminum foil.
Allow to cool completely in the pan set on a wire rack before cutting into 9 or 12 squares.