My Dad used to tell me stories about the amazing apple pies that my grandmother would make. Unfortunately the recipe was never handed down. But that wouldn't stop him venturing into the kitchen every once in a while and giving it a try.
Here is my own version. This recipe keeps the apples very simple with only a little sugar and cinnamon. By using a mix of granny smith and an eating apple you will get the best of both words. That lovely melted apple puree and firm chunks.
But the star is the pastry, super short and crumbly. You might want to make a 1.5 or 2x quantity if you're after a crust that doesn't crumble. I think it lacks a little structural integrity in the current quanity.
Sweet Crust pastry
- 375g Plain flour
- 100g Castor sugar
- 250g Unsalted butter, cold
- 2 Egg yolks
- 60ml Water
- 5ml vanilla paste
- 1 pinch salt
- Sift flour and sugar together into a large bowl.
- Using a vegetable grater, grate the cold butter into flour. Depending on the size of your bowl you may need to stop 2-4 times to toss the butter through the flour. You want each bit of butter to be coated in flour and sit separately.
- In a separate bowl whisk yolks, water and vanilla together.
- Pour liquids into flour/butter mix.
- Knead the mix gently in bowl until comes together. I may feel like it is way too dry initially but keep kneading. The heat from your hands will melt the butter and bring it together. It should take around 3-5 minutes.
- Wrap in clingfilm and refrigerate for 30 minutes
Apple pie filling
- 6 Eating apples
- 4 Granny smith apples
- ¼ cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 2 tablespoon water
- 1 tablespoon corn flour
- Lemon juice, optional
- Peel, core and chop apples into chunks
- Add to a saucepan with all ingredients except lemon juice
- Cook over medium-low heat, stirring often, until softened but still firm.
- Add lemon juice at the end if you feel the apples are missing a tart edge
- Allow to cool to room temperature.
- Remove the pastry from the fridge, unwrap and cut ⅗ off, this will be the base.
- Butter/oil a 20cm pie dish
- Roll out pastry base on a floured surface. This is an extremely short dough so it will crack. Don’t worry.
- Roll to 5-7mm thick then use your rolling pin to roll the pastry off the bench and transfer to your pie dish. Press gently in the dish and use any extra dough to patch rips or tears. Don’t trim the edge yet.
- Pour your apple filling into the base and spread evenly.
- Repeat the rolling and transfer of the top piece.
- Press the edges together and cut away any excess dough.
- (Optional) Spritz the top of the pie with water and sprinkle with granulated sugar.
- Bake @ 180c for 45-60 minutes until golden.
- Allow to cool for 10 minutes and serve with cream.
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