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Bake something Saturday: Making apple pie when Stayman apples aren’t in season

May 4, 2013

The other Saturday I was hungry for homemade apple pie and had a small pie crust calling my name in the freezer. But it is spring and Stayman apples, the longtime Davis favorite (and a popular Virginia apple, check here, if you want to know why) are no where to be found. Even in the fall, orchards seem to quickly run out of the popular cooking apple.

So I bought some Granny Smiths and went to work.

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The recipe I use for apple pies comes from the Davises by memory from my husband and my husband’s family. His mother died when my husband was just 19, before I ever met him. By checking other pie recipes, I eventually settled on the quantities below.

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(I slice the apples thin, and then cut each slice in half.)

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(My husband says the secret to good apple pie is lots of cinnamon, and its good for you.)

For another time, I want to share my daughter’s recipe and experiment with canning apples ready to pop into a pie. She and a friend who has gotten into canning stuff tried it last fall and it seems to work great. I’m so proud of her for trying it!

Michelle has also taken a pie she once fell in love with at a McCormick and Schmecks restaurant, upside down walnut crust apple pie, and turned it into a sought-after favorite at her office’s annual (?) bake off. We’ll save that variation for another time too.

Just now, there’s some a small patch of rhubarb calling my name and though I was never a big fan of rhubarb as a child, my youngest daughter, Doreen has turned this “first fruit of spring” into an anticipated treat. I’ll share the results NEXT week.

Happy bake something Saturday! And don’t miss blogger Nancy Babbitt’s recipe for how to make vinegar out of your apple peelings.

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The pie recipe below is found in my book, Whatever Happened to Dinner, which is still on sale (along with all other Herald Press cookbooks until May 8, this week!

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Davis Apple Pie

Crust (for a 2-crust 9” pie):

2 cups / 500 ml flour
1 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup / 150 ml shortening plus 2 tablespoons
¼ cup / 50 ml water

Mix flour and salt, then cut in shortening. When shortening and flour are mixed to make clumps the size of peas, add water. Mix by hand until clump of dough is formed. Divide into two balls. Roll out bottom crust for pie pan on a well-floured board with a floured rolling pin. Carefully lift with a turner and put in pan. Roll out second pie crust for top, slicing a few decorative holes with knife to allow steam to escape. Can follow this pattern ( = ) or variation. Leave crust to rest on board until you fill the pie with apple mixture.

Apple mixture:

5 cups / 1.3 L peeled and sliced tart apples
1 cup / 250 ml sugar
1 tablespoon flour
¼ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon lemon juice

Mix apples and all ingredients in bowl. Put in pie crust. Pat edge of crust with water to help bottom and top crust to seal. Put on top crust, and pinch together, pressing with fork or your own pattern of twists. Protect crust from getting overly brown by using foil around edge of pie pan. Bake in a 425° oven for 10 minutes, then lower heat to 350° to 375° for another 50 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool.

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(Pie with crumb topping ready to go in the oven; the pan looked full, but it baked down and did not overrun the pan.)

Crumb topping – alternate to using a pastry topping (this part is not in my book if you’re looking)

½ cup / 125 ml brown sugar
½  cup /125 ml butter
1 cup / 250 ml flour
Mix until crumbs resemble coarse meal with lumps the size of peas. Sprinkle on top. Bake at 450 degrees for 15 minutes then 350 for 45 minutes.

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My crumb topping mixture.

What’s your favorite apple for making pie??

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From → Family Life, Food, Recipes

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