Tuesday, November 23, 2010
It is also the one word that I will always associate with my daughter's paediatrician. A phenomenal doctor, she has often gone beyond the call of duty in attending to my daughter. And to think, I met her when I had gone to buy some toys for the little one! A serendipitous meeting but one that I will forever look back on with fondness and gratitude.
She is a constant source of inspiration with her boundless energy and insatiable appetite to learn new things. Cooking is just one of her many passions and this apple pie recipe is adapted from the one she shared with me.
It is quite different from the normal apple pie recipes where the apples slices are simply tossed in sugar and spices and then baked. In this particular recipe the apples slices are coated in a sauce and then baked in the crust.
Yes, it takes longer than the traditional recipes but the resulting pie is totally worth the effort!
for the crust:
All purpose flour: 2 cups
Unsalted butter: 2/3 cups + 2 tbsps/ 175 gms (original uses shortening)
Ice cold water: 4-6 tbsps
Salt: 1/4 tsp
Sugar: 2 tbsps
Cut the cold butter into cubes and chill again for about 15-20 mins. In a bowl, mix together the flour, sugar and the salt. Add in the butter and rub it into the flour with your fingertips till you get a grainy and crumbly mixture, with pea sized pices of butter.
Add in the water, a tablespoon at a time, till the mixture comes together and forms a dough.
I planned to make 2 five inch pies, and so I divided the dough into 4 equal balls, wrapped them individually in plastic wrap and refrigerated them for a couple of hours.
(The dough is otherwise sufficient for a single 9" pie)
for the filling:
Apples: 6 ( I used Granny Smith)
Brown Sugar: 1/2 cup
Rind of 1 orange and 1 lemon
Cinnamon powder: 1 tsp
Allspice/Nutmeg powder: 1/2 tsp
Orange juice: 1/2 cup
Juice of 1 lemon
Cornstarch: 1 tbsp
Butter: 1 tsp
Pecan nuts/walnuts: 1/3 cup
Peel and core the apples and cut them into thick slices.
Toss the slices in the sugar, the orange and lemon rinds, cinnamon and nutmeg powders and the lime juice and let them macerate for half an hour.
Then cook the apple slices till they just become limp. Once cooled, add the orange juice and the rum, if using, and refrigerate for at least 4 hours.
After the refrigeration time has elapsed, transfer the mixture into a strainer placed over a larger vessel in order to separate the juice from the apple slices. Allow to strain for about 15-20 mins.
Place the strained juice in a small saucepan and let simmer till syrup. Add the butter, stir and then add in the cornstarch stirring continuously till the juice thickens. Mix the apple slices and the chopped nuts into the sauce and allow to cool.
Assembling the pie:
Take one ball of the dough and on a lightly floured surface, roll it to a 7 inch circle, about 1/8" thick. Gently transfer it to a greased pie pan. Press firmly on the bottom and the sides of the pan, trimming off the excess with a pastry knife. Cover with a cling wrap and refrigerate.
To make a lattice patterned top, first cut out a parchment paper circle the size of your pie pan.
Place the next strip vertically and going over the horizontal strip as such:
Then put the next strip horizontally, tucking it under the first vertical strip and over the next vertical strip as such:
Continue placing the strips in a similar manner, going alternately under and over the other strips. The distance between the strips is entirely a matter of personal choice. I love to eat pie crust and hence I chose to have a tightly knit top:
Cover with another parchment circle and chill. Repeat for the second pie pan.
Pre heat the oven to 200 deg C.
Then put the filling into the pie pans. To seal the pie, simply invert the lattice patterned top over the filling and peel off the parchment paper. Seal the strips over the rim of the pie pan, brush the top with some melted butter and sprinkle some caster sugar.
Bake for about 30 - 35 mins or until the top is lightly browned and the juices start bubbling over.
Remove the pie from the oven and allow it to cool for a couple of hours before cutting it.
Serve with some vanilla ice cream or whipped cream; personally, I love to have just as it is without anything else coming in the way of the heavenly cinnamon and orange flavoured apple slices encrusted in a shortbread like flaky crust!
Rushing this pie off to Meeta's Monthly Mingle that Deeba is hosting this month.
It is not just about the ingredients or the recipe, good food happens when it is served with love!!