On the weekend I love to get up early and spend the morning baking. There are no distractions, my work is mostly done for the week, so it’s the perfect excuse to brew up a big mug of coffee, put some relaxing jazz on the stereo and break out the flour, butter and sugar. Today I’m baking a real American classic: Deep Dish Apple Pie.
I love the simplicity of flavours in apple pie. There is something so honest and comforting about a sweet apple filling, lightly spiced with cinnamon and wrapped in a golden, buttery crust. Making apple pie is a tactile experience, from rubbing the butter into the flour to make the pastry, peeling and dicing the apples, then rolling out the pastry and carefully making a lattice top. It’s a hands-on kind of recipe, ideal to fill an hour or two when you have some time on your hands.
The quantities in this recipe make enough for a large, deep dish apple pie, but can be easily halved to make a smaller or shallower pie. I love to weave a lattice topping for the pie, it looks beautifully rustic and sounds much more complicated than it actually is. You can, of course, just make a simple lid, but it is worth giving the lattice top a go, as it always elicits oohs and aahs of appreciation when it comes out of the oven.
As tempting as it may be to serve your pie up straight from the oven, while the house is full of delicious aromas, apple pie needs time to set. This can take an hour or two depending on the depth of your pie, so be patient, it is worth it in the end. If you want to eat the pie warm, you can always warm up individual slices in the oven.
Do you make apple pies? Do you have a favourite family recipe or do you like to experiment? Let me know in the comments below! xJ
Let me know if you try this recipe in the comments below, or using the hashtag #daysofjay on Instagram. Happy cooking!
for the dough:
- 350g plain flour
- 1 Tbsp sugar
- 1 tsp salt
- ½ tsp baking powder
- 200g cold unsalted butter, cubed
- 100ml cold water
for the filling:
- 1.25 kg of apples
- juice of 1 lemon
- 100g sugar
- 30g plain flour (3 Tbsp)
- 1 ½ tsp cinnamon
- 2 Tbsp fine bread crumbs
for the glaze:
- 1 egg yolk
- 2 Tbsp water
- 1 Tbsp sugar
- Make the dough by whisking the flour, sugar, salt and baking powder together in a large mixing bowl. Add the butter and rub together until the mixture looks rough and flaky. Pour in the water and use a fork to mix to a loose dough. Turn out onto the bench and squeeze together into a disc, then wrap in clingfilm and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
- While the dough is resting, prepare your filling. Peel and core the apples, then quarter and cut into slicea 5mm (¼ inch) thick. Toss with the lemon juice to prevent the apple from browning.
- In a small bowl whisk together the sugar, flour and cinnamon, then stir through the apples. Set aside for 10 minutes to allow the apples to release their juices.
- Heat the oven to 220°C / 425°F / Gas 7 with a baking tray on the middle rack, and grease a deep pie dish with butter (see note). When the dough has rested, divide it into two pieces, one slightly larger than the other. Roll out the bigger piece to a large circle on a lightly floured surface, turning the dough 90° between each roll and flouring the surface so it doesnt stick.
- Drape the dough over the rolling pin and lift the dough into the pie dish, pressing the dough firmly against the base and sides, leaving a pastry overhang on all sides.
- Prick the base all over with a fork, scatter over the bread crumbs, then fill with the sliced apples and any liquid in the bowl. Try to have the apple slices lying as flat as possible. Transfer to the fridge while you prepare the top pastry.
**The next bit sounds complicated, but it is very straightforward, consult the pictures if anything is not clear!**
- Roll the remaining dough out to a large circle. To make the lattice top, use a ruler and a pizza cutter or sharp knife to cut strips in your desired width. Arrange half of the strips over the pie in parallel lines. Fold back every second strip, lay a strip over the pie, perpendicular to the others, then fold the strips back down.
- Fold up all the strips that you didn’t fold up the last time, lay another strip of pastry perpendicular to the others and repeat, weaving the pastry strips together until the pie is covered. Trim the edges of the dough, leaving a small overhang, then fold in the excess pastry from the base, rolling it onto the rim of the pie dish. Crimp or shape the edges to seal.
- Whisk the egg yolk and water together, then brush the pie all over. Sprinkle with sugar then bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes. Turn the heat down to 180°C / 350°F / Gas 4 and bake for 40-50 minutes until golden brown and the apple is bubbling.
- Allow to cool completely in the dish before serving.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1 Slice
Amount Per Serving:Calories: 576Total Fat: 22gSaturated Fat: 13gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 77mgSodium: 299mgCarbohydrates: 93gFiber: 5gSugar: 35gProtein: 6g
Nutrition information is calculated automatically and isn’t always accurate.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Can I use store-bought pastry to make my apple pie?
Of course you can, but it is worth making your own. This dough recipe is very forgiving and easy to handle, try it, you might surprise yourself!
What sort of apples should I use to make Deep Dish Apple Pie?
Tarter apple varieties are usually used for cooking, in Germany I use Elstar, but my favourite variety is Braeburn from New Zealand. Experiment with your local apple varieties to find the one that works the best for you.
My apple pies always turn out soggy! Any advice?
The dreaded soggy bottom! There are a lot of variables with apple pies as different apples have different levels of moisture. By adding the flour in this recipe you shouldn’t have any problems. I have also used the good old fashioned German trick of putting a layer of breadcrumbs in the pastry case before you add the apples, the breadcrumbs will soak up excess liquid and you cannot taste them in the final dish.
If all else fails, you can try mixing the apples, flour and cinnamon sugar together then placing in a colander over a bowl. Leave for ½ an hour, then simmer the sugary liquid that the apples have released until reduced by half. Pour over the apples once they are in the pie.