5 (2)

Bake, Desserts

Apple pie

Apple pie
Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times

When I tell people I grew up in a family of pie bakers, it’s easy to imagine I’m bragging. My mother’s pies are legendary — rich, velvety custard fillings or mounded fruit pies, each cradled in an ornately decorated crust, ... Read more

  • 8 (or 6 large) tart apples, such as Granny Smith
  • 4 tablespoons (½ stick) butter
  • 3 tablespoons dark brown sugar
  • ¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • Scant ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup raisins, rehydrated in rum, another liquor or juice
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • Prepared flaky pie crust dough, chilled
  • Egg white and sugar for finishing the top crust

Step 1Peel and core the apples, and cut each into 8 slices. Cut each slice crosswise into 1/4-inch pieces.

Step 2In a large skillet over medium heat, melt the butter. Stir in the apple slices, brown sugar, cinnamon and salt, and cook, stirring frequently, just until the apples start to soften, 3 to 4 minutes (the slices should still be crisp). Remove from heat and stir in the raisins and cornstarch. Spread the apple mixture onto a baking sheet to stop the cooking process and allow the apples to cool.

Step 3Heat the oven to 400 degrees, and fit a rack at the lowest part of the oven.

Step 4Remove the crust from the refrigerator and roughly divide into two pieces (figure on using about 2/3 for bottom crust). Wrap and refrigerate the smaller portion of dough while you roll out and fill the bottom crust.

Step 5On a well-floured board, roll the dough for the bottom crust to a thickness of about 1/8 inch. (It might help to roll the dough on a large sheet of floured parchment or wax paper. The dough then can be more easily lifted and inverted over the pie dish.)

Step 6Gently lift and center the dough over a 9-inch pie dish; if the dough cracks, simply press the crack together to seal, or patch with a little leftover dough. Ease the dough into the pie dish, making sure to remove any air bubbles from underneath the dough, and trim the edges, saving any scraps.

Step 7Fill the shell with the fruit filling, mounding the fruit in the center of the pie.

Step 8Roll out the top crust, cutting decorative cutouts or lattice strips if desired. Decorate the top of the pie, brushing egg white as needed to adhere the decorations or lattice. Sprinkle sugar over the decorations or lattice, avoiding the outer edge of the crust where the sugar is more likely to burn.

Step 9Bake the pie on the lowest rack of the oven until the crust is a rich, golden color and set, and the filling is bubbly throughout, about 1 hour to 1 hour and 15 minutes. If any part of the crust browns too quickly, tent with foil, and if the bottom crust browns too quickly, move the pie to a higher rack.

Step 10Cool the pie before serving.


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