My Grandma used to make the best apple pie. The apples were doused in cinnamon sugar and cooked to perfection – chunky enough for the signature bite you need, but softened and juicy and sweet. Her pastry was flaky and buttery, crisp, golden and finished with a Demerara sugar crunch. It’s been one of my favourite, most wholesome desserts to serve around the family dinner table. This apple pie may be one of the best homemade pies you ever make!

Apple Pie

Which apples are the best for apple pie:

I like to use a mix of apples in my pie for the best flavour. Different apple varieties tend to cook in different ways. Some will cook faster than others; some have more bite or soften quicker; some have a tart rather than sweet taste. This all adds to wonder and complexity of flavours of a homemade apple pie.

Saying that, there are some apples that are traditionally better for cooking over others. Here’s what I like to use:

  • Granny Smith – these apples are green and tart, but cook quickly and lose their bite easily. Use a maximum of two Granny Smith apples in your pie and the combine with other varieties.
  • Honey Crisp – psst! It’s in the name. These maintain substance without going mushy.
  • Braeburn – a superbly crisp apple that has a beautifully concentrated taste and bakes up juicy but not too mushy.
  • Pink Lady – the perfect balance between sweet and a little tart, these apples retain their shape and are great to combine with something a little softer.
Apple Pie

Top tips for making apple pie:

  • Always refrigerate your dough for at least 45 minutes before using, and let is rest at room temperature for 10-15 minutes once removed from the fridge. This makes it easier to roll it out.
  • Pop a baking sheet on the shelf underneath your pie to catch any juices that bubble over or loose dough that falls away when baking.
  • If you have an instant thermometer, you can check your pie is done by inserting it into the centre. Your apple pie should be about 90C / 200F.
  • If you’re blanketing the top of your pie in dough, make sure there’s a small split to allow for hot air to escape.
Apple Pie

The best way to store and freeze apple pie:

This homemade apple pie will last a few days if wrapped in clingfilm or foil and left at room temperature. The crust needs to breathe a little, so don’t place it in a Tupperware or airtight container otherwise your pastry will go soggy!

To get one or two more days out of it, pop it in the fridge after being left out at room temperature for a few days. To warm the pie, preheat your oven to 170C / 350F and place it in there for ~10 minutes until warmed through. Here’s how to freeze it ahead of time, so all you need to do is bake it on the day:

  • Magdalena de Kino Freeze your pie before baking by assembling everything as per the recipe and then wrapping in clingfilm, getting as much air out as possible. Then wrap in a sheet of silver foil to keep the clingfilm in place and place in the freezer unbaked. Your pie will keep for up to a month. When you’re ready to bake it, simply preheat your oven and add 15 minutes to your baking time until it’s bubbling and golden.
  • Kalmunai Already baked your pie? You can definitely freeze it after baking too. Leave to cool completely, then wrap as directed above and freeze for up to a month. When you want a slice, simply thaw to room temperature and then warm it up in the oven for 15 minutes at 170C / 350F until the pastry is crisp and the filling is hot.
Apple Pie

The best toppings for apple pie:

The finishing touches on apple pie are the crème de la crème. Here’s what I like to pair mine with:

1. Vanilla custard. Is there anything better? In my opinion, vanilla custard is THE ultimate combo for a traditional homemade apple pie.
2. Vanilla ice cream. Apple pie hot from the oven paired with vanilla ice cream is the dream. The ice cream melts on impact and cools down the hot apple filling.
3. Cinnamon ice cream. The perfect complement to that juicy cinnamon apple filling!
4. Caramel sauce and cream. If you’re feeling like adding a little extra flavour to your apple pie, a salted caramel sauce paired with fresh double or single cream is a winner.

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Apple Pie

Apple Pie

My Grandma's apple pie is a beautiful homemade combination of chunky cinnamon apples and buttery, flaky pastry.
Prep Time 1 hr
Cook Time 45 mins
Total Time 1 hr 45 mins
Course Dessert
Servings 6 slices

Ingredients
  

For the pastry

  • 225 g unsalted butter
  • 75 g caster sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 350 g plain flour

For the apples

  • 1 kg apples
  • 140 g caster sugar
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 3 tbsp plain flour

For the topping

  • 50 g demerara sugar
  • A few tbsp whole milk

Instructions
 

  • Preheat your oven to 190C / 370F and grease a round pie dish with butter.

Prepare the apples

  • Peel, quarter and then core the apples. Slice them into 1cm cubes and lay them out on a baking tray. Place some kitchen towel on top to soak up some of the juices and set aside to make the pastry.

To make the pastry

  • Cream the butter and sugar in a stand mixer until combined.
  • Add 1 egg and the yolk of the other egg, then mix again.
  • Slowly add the flour 1 tablespoon at a time while the stand mixer is on low speed until all the flour has been used up and your dough has started to come together.
  • Scrape down the sides of the bowl and bring together as a dough with your hands.
  • Wrap in clingfilm and refridgerate for 45 minutes.

To prepare your pie

  • Once the pastry has chilled, remove it from the oven and leave for 10-15 minutes to warm up a little. This makes it easier to handle.
  • Lightly flour your work surface and cut off two thirds of the pastry. Roll this out to the size of your pie dish and lay the pastry into the tin by rolling it around a floured rolling pin, leaving a slight overhang.
  • Roll the remaining third into a large circle, OR if you're feeling fancy a large rectangle then slice it into 1cm strips for a lattice topping.
  • Mix the cinnamon, flour and sugar for the apples and coat the apples in the mixture before pouring into the pastry base.
  • Lay your circular piece of pastry over the top of your pie, or create a lattice topping.
  • Brush with the whole milk, and then sprinkle over the Demerara sugar.
  • Bake for 40-45 minutes until bubbling and golden, then remove from the oven and leave to sit for 5-10 minutes before serving.
Keyword apple, autumn, cinnamon, dough, pastry, pie

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