Classic Apple Pie

Apple is the quintessential American fruit: the story of Johnny Chapman Appleseed is still popular,  apples are a favorite fruit of elementary age students and apple pie is king for many pie lovers.  A ripe apple is a crunchy sweet treat. Just walk through an apple orchard in autumn: the delicious scent in the air will cause you to purchase lots of apples.  An apple pie in the oven always perfumes the house for hours, acting like a magnet for children and male friends! I normally make an apple crumb pie but sometimes I go that extra step to make a top crust, sure pleases my guy even through he professes to love crumb pies…

I put this scratch pie together in a few steps; make the double recipe of crust dough; put it in fridge to chill while I peeled, sliced and cut up the apples.  If you plan to pre-bake your crust those ten minutes of baking the empty pie crust are also a good time for preparing the apples.  Each step is fairly easy but the results are spectacular.  Of course, you could buy a ready-made unbaked crust but this crust I use is fairly easy if you use a stand mixer and it is really tasty: my mom hardly believes it is gluten free! I really don’t know how to convince her but this disbelief of hers is proof of the great flavor and texture of this particular basic gf pie crust.  I used a mixture of baking apples, but not Granny Smith unless they have gotten a tad soft and definitely no apples meant for only eating raw like Red Delicious.

It goes without saying that this pie is great with a slice of vanilla ice cream.

Fresh out of the oven!

The entire pie got eaten and no one remembered to take any more pictures of it; like of a single slice… sadly it is long gone.

Double Crust Apple Pie

Crust:

2 1/4 c brown rice flour mix (at bottom of recipe)

1/4 c sweet rice flour

2 Tbps. granulated sugar

1 tsp xanthan gum

1/2 tsp salt

12 Tbps. cold butter cut into 6 chunks

2 lg eggs

4 tsp fresh orange or lemon juice

Directions: Spray a nine inch pie pan with cooking spray, dust with white rice flour. Set aside.

Mix dry ingredients in bowl of stand electric mixer.  Add butter and mix until crumbly and resembling coarse meal.  Add eggs and juice.  Mix until it comes together into big chunks.  Shape into two balls with your hands. Put them on a crust sized piece of wax paper (14 x 14 inches more or less), flatten the crust balls some; wrap well and chill it all in your fridge 15-20 minutes.

Roll out one flattened ball of chilled into a pie crust in a pie bag or between the two sheets of wax paper, try to get the thickness even, no thick middle! Peel off one side of paper and place in the pie pan, be sure to center it.  Remove other slice of wax paper.  Crimp edges all around or wait to do it with the top crust.

Filling:

6-8 medium-large sized apples, I like a mixture of yellow delicious and at least one other cooking variety; red Rome, Jonathan, empire, Courtland, or any tart apple you like to bake with.

Peel apples, quarter, cut out core, slice into 1/3 inch thick slices. Should have at least six cups. Place in a large bowl

¼ cup brown sugar

1/2 cup granulated sugar (more if you like it sweet)

3 tbsp. minute tapioca or 3 tbsp. gf flour mix (recipe below or any decent blend)

1 tsp. cinnamon

A good sprinkle of ground nutmeg

1-2 tbsp lemon juice

Mix the dry ingredients, sprinkle the apples with lemon juice; add the dry ingredients. Heap in pie crust, Top with:

1  Tbsp. cold butter cut into small bits (optional)

Roll out top crust after you put the filling in the pan that is lined with the first crust. Peel off wax or parchment and lay over apples, crimp edges with fingers to seal them.  Prick or slash the top to let out steam. Bake in a preheated 375 degree oven for 55-65 minutes until bubbly and the crust is light brown.  You can cover the pie loosely with aluminum foil for the first 30 minutes.  I have a bottom heat oven so my crust gets crisp but if you have issues with soggy bottom crusts; prebake your crust for 10 minutes; then fill, top and bake immediately.

Cool the pie at least 4 hours to allow the juices to reabsorb before serving at room temperature.

Brown Rice Flour Mix (same as  King Arthur basic gf blend)
2 c brown rice flour

2/3 c potato starch

1/3 c tapioca flour

The crust recipe is from Annalise Roberts’ great cookbook: Gluten-Free Baking Classics. My filling is slightly different.

Originally posted in 2017

Apple Crisp: Easy, Quick and Really Tasty

Apples are the centerpiece of the fall harvest culture.  Pumpkins are popular but they are a relatively new comer to the contest.  Some may think pumpkins are the way to go in baking but I firmly believe the apple is king in Autumn in America.  Crisp, sweet, flavorful and so very good for you. Apple crisp is nice as it goes together quickly and travels well. I took a pan of it camping last weekend and it was very good indeed warmed up on the campfire.

If you can, get the organic ones as the sprays they use on growing apples are not at all good for you.  I have made apple crisp with some baking apples from a pick it yourself farm near Milford NJ and it was very tasty indeed.  I especially suggest you get your apples at an actual apple orchard.  Another orchard just south of Hellertown is Bechdolt’s Orchard which grows many apple varieties.  Go there if you want the freshest tastiest apples in the Saucon Valley area.  Apples grow all over the globe so shop where you can get them fresh and crisp! The variety is up to you but I would not suggest any that are not meant for baking; don’t use red delicious as they are for eating only, same goes for honey crisp apples. apple-cart

This recipe is out of Gluten-Free Baking Classics Cookbook by Annalise G. Roberts with a few minor changes.  I am betting you can use any GF flour mix in this recipe, not like a cake or other baked goods that have very specific flour requirements.

And it is so much easier than a pie.  No crust to mix or roll out.  Just a simple mixed up topping to add to the cut up apples.  Bake it and voila: a yummy yet fairly healthy dessert!

I have made the topping several ways.  You can cut un-melted butter into the dry ingredients; it makes for a firmer crumb than the melted version below. I have made it egg free but it really somehow needs that egg to pull it together to mimic a wheat flour based crisp.  The oats can be left out if you don’t like them or can’t eat them. I personally love oats in my crisp.  A quarter cup of chopped nuts can be added to the topping; really a nice touch too!  I don’t like it too sweet so I use the lesser amount of sugar.  This is entirely a personal choice.  You can up the nutritional value by adding flaxmeal to the dry mix; 2-3 tbsp.

For those who love ice cream, this recipe is absolutely perfect with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream next to it.  I like it warm from the oven but it also is tasty cold the next day, if you have any left over that is!

pork tenderloin, banana choco cupcakes 007

Angie’s Apple Crisp

1 cup GF flour (mix below)

½ to ¾ cup sugar (I prefer brown sugar)

½ cup old fashioned gf oats

1 ¼ tsp baking powder

1 tsp cinnamon

Sprinkle of nutmeg

½ tsp xanthan gum

½ tsp. salt

1 large egg

6 cups peeled and thinly sliced apples

¼-1/3 cup butter, melted

Heat oven to 350 degrees.   Put rack in center level of oven.  Lightly butter a 9 inch square pan or spray with cooking spray.

Combine all the dry ingredients.  Add egg and stir to mix well.   Place apples in the baking pan, top with the dry mix and sprinkle with the melted butter.  Bake 40-50 minutes until bubbly and the topping is lightly browned. Let cool at least 10 minutes before dishing out. Six servings.

Brown Rice Flour Mix (same as King Arthur’s Basic GF blend)
2 c brown rice flour (finely ground)

2/3 c potato starch – Not potato flour!

1/3 c tapioca flour

Originally posted by me October 2015.