Beth Howard’s Apple Pie
When forced to choose my favorite pie, I go with classic apple. I love the combination of a buttery crust, apples, sugar and cinnamon.—Beth Howard, Eldon, Iowa
Total TimePrep: 30 min. + chilling Bake: 1 hour.
- BASIC PIE CRUST:
- 2-1/2 cups flour (white all-purpose)
- Dash of salt
- 1/2 cup butter, chilled
- 1/2 cup shortening
- Ice water (fill one cup but use only enough to moisten dough)
- APPLE FILLING:
- 7 to 8 large Granny Smith apples, peeled (depending on size of apple & size of pie dish, have about 3 lbs. available)
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 4 tablespoons flour
- Dash of salt
- 1 to 2 teaspoons cinnamon (depending on how much you like)
- 1 tablespoon butter (put dollop on top before covering with top crust)
- 1 beaten egg (you won't use all of it, just enough to brush on pie before baking)
- In a deep bowl, work the butter and shortening into the flour and salt with your hands until you see marble-sized lumps form. Think mixed nuts, but no bigger than almonds. Add ice water a little at a time, sort of “fluffing” the flour. Keep your movements light, as if you are tossing dressing into a salad with your hands. When the dough feels moistened enough, do a “squeeze test” and when it holds together you’re done. Do not overwork the dough! It takes very little time and you’ll be tempted to keep touching it, but don’t! Now divide the dough in two, form each half into a disk shape and roll flat and thin to fit your pie dish. Sprinkle flour under and on top of your dough, and keep rolling surface and pin free from gunk to keep dough from sticking. Trim excess dough to about 1 inch from the dish edge with a scissors.
- Slice half of the apples directly into the pie, arranging to remove extra space between slices. Cover with half of your other ingredients (sugar, flour, cinnamon, salt), then slice the remaining apples and cover with second half of ingredients. Add dollop of butter on top, cover with top crust, seal and crimp edges, then brush with beaten egg (this gives the pie a nice golden brown shine; be careful not to let egg pool in crevices.) Use a knife to poke vent holes in the top (get creative here with a pattern), then bake at 425 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes. Turn oven down to 375 degrees and bake for another 30 to 40 minutes until juice bubbles. Keep an eye on it as it bakes. If it gets too brown turn down the temperature. To be sure it’s done, poke with a knife to make sure apples have softened. Do not over bake or apples will turn mushy.