Monday, October 22, 2012

Market Mondays and Apple Pie

Lots of good stuff this weekend at the market.. fresh dinner rolls, garlic, eggs, potatoes, spaghetti squash, empire apples, cabbage, cauliflower, butter! (yes!!), bacon, summer squash, hamburg, top round and long  pie pumpkins (also known as Nantucket pie). Good eating ahead of us for this week!

Next weekend will be the last official market weekend of the year, then it goes to 2 weekends a month in an indoor market for the winter months. So we'll have to stock up the weekends they are open. 

This weekend was a perfect baking weekend. I made more blueberry muffins and also another apple pie.

Polly loves when the peels fall to the floor. I am trying out a new dough recipe this weekend. I LOVE my gramma's recipe. The problem is that it is extremely difficult to roll out. It always tears. So I tried out a recipe I found in the November issue of Martha Stewart.

The dough rolled out very smooth. It also helps because when you make it (before you chill it) you roll it into an 8" disk - then refrigerate for 45 minutes - 2 days. I made the dough Saturday afternoon and made the pie on Sunday to have with our roast.

I never used to pre-cook my apples, but I am really loving the flavor more when they are pre-cooked. It makes the pie taste more like diner-style pie. Very tasty!!

I usually make a huge, heaping pie but Polly broke my favorite pie dish this past week :

It was on the counter waiting to be washed as we finished the pie off, late the night before. I took my morning shower and heard a huge crash (which is usually when she gets into most of her mischief) Then there is was.. the rooster dish shattered on the floor. My mom had given me the vintage dish and I just loved it so much. The only other dish I have right now is my ginormous handmade dish. It makes a 12" pie. You need lots of apples to get that sucker to be heaping! Especially if you precook the apples. 

So my pie was a "flat" pie. When I told K he joked and said, "You mean a normal pie?!" haha 

If you'd like to try your hand out at the perfect apple pie.. here is the mix of my gramma's recipe with Martha Stewart.

Piecrust (via Martha Stewart November 2012 issue):

2 sticks unsalted butter, chilled, cut into pieces and divided
2 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
1/2 cup ice water

1. Lay out three quarters of the cubed butter pieces on parchment and freeze until hard, at least 30 minutes. Take the remaining butter and refrigerate.

2. Combine flour, salt, and sugar in a food processor. Add refrigerated butter and pulse to combine, roughly 10 times. Add frozen butter, and pulse until mixture resembles coarse meal with some blueberry sized clumps.

3. Add ice water, immediately pulse until water is just incorporated, about 10 times. Squeeze a small amount of dough to make sure it holds together.

4. Lay out 2 pieces of plastic wrap. Empty 1/2 the dough onto each piece. Bring the edges of wrap together to gather the dough. Press into disks.

5. Roll out the disks, still wrapped in plastic, to 1/2" thick rounds (8"). Refrigerate at least 45 minutes and up to 2 days. (dough can be frozen for up to one month)

Filling via my gramma:

6 cups of apples, peeled, cored and cut (I never measure - I use as much as I want! Usually a 1/2 peck from the farmer's market or apple orchard) I love honeycrisp apples, my favorite, but use any apple you like. Recently I have been using Empire apples. Another sweet apple.)
1/2 Cup sugar
1/2 Cup brown sugar
2 TBS flour
1 TBS lemon juice
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg (I never add this - not a nutmeg fan)
2 TBS butter

Here is where you have another choice: to precook or to not precook. If you don't want to precook and have more of a crisper apple. Combine all your ingredients over the apples, and you are all set.

If you want to precook: Put your cut apples into a large pot on medium/low heat. Combine all the above ingredients and cook down. I don't cook them for too long. I just allow some of the moisture out of the apples because they are still going to get cooked in your pie. This is more of those things, you just know when it's ready. Let it cool down and then add to your pie crust.

Another choice: My gramma ALWAYS put an "egg wash" on her crust. That was always my job. I can still remember "painting" the pies when I was teeny tiny, standing on a chair in the kitchen. But I know many people use all different washes on their crusts, some sprinkle sugar. This again, is your personal choice. 

Slit 4 slits in the top

Bake @ 450 for 15 minutes then lower the oven temperature to 350 and cook for 35 minutes.

and there you have it -  super delicious apple pie! Maybe even some blueberry muffins will miraculously appear on top of your stove as well!

Happy Baking all!