ingredients

  • PASTRY:
    • 3 ¼ oz cake flour
    • 8 ¾ oz all purpose flour
    • 1 teaspoon salt
    • 1 tablespoon sugar
    • 1 tablespoon lard
    • 4 tablespoons Crisco shortening
    • 1 large pinch Baking Powder
    • 1 tablespoon buttermilk powder
    • 4 tablespoons ice water
    • 4 tablespoons ice cold vodka, mix with water
    • 8 ½ tablespoons butter , frozen in advance (see Note)
  • APPLE FILLING:
    • ½ cup granulated sugar (3 1/2 ounces) plus 1 teaspoon
    • ¼ cup packed light brown sugar
    • ¼ teaspoon table salt
    • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
    • ½ teaspoon grated lemon zest
    • teaspoon ground cinnamon
    • 5 cups tart apples (firm) about 5 medium, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices (see note)
    • 5 cups sweet apples (firm) about 5 medium, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices (see note)
    • 1 egg white beaten lightly

directions

1. Preheat oven to 400°F, then reduce to 375°F after pie is in the oven.
2. Mix equal amounts of water and vodka and pour into a spray bottle. Keep the bottle in the freezer until needed later to add more moisture to dough if it's dry.
3. For Pastry: Combine dry ingredients. Mix together Crisco and lard in metal bowl. Sprinkle with flour mixture. Chill in refrigerator for 15 minutes. Transfer contents to food processor and pulse about 3 seconds to combine ingredients. Remove butter from freezer and slice into 1/2 inch chunks. Add butter and pulse until butter is size of large peas, about ten 1-second pulses. Mix briefly, less than 20 seconds, leave large unincorporated pockets of butter and shortening. If mixture is beginning to melt, refrigerate briefly.
4. Remove dough from food processor and transfer to a large bowl. Sprinkle vodka and water over mixture. With rubber spatula, use folding motion to mix, pressing down on dough until dough is slightly tacky and sticks together. Divide dough into two even balls and flatten each into 4-inch disk. Wrap each in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 45 minutes or up to 2 days.
5. NOTE: For a flakier pie crust, reserve 1/3 stick of butter and slice lengthwise, 1/8 inch thick. To make this easier, slice the butter while still soft and then freeze the strips. Place strips of butter onto dough and then fold into thirds before refrigerating for half hour resting period.
6. Turn dough out onto work surface. Divide dough into 2 balls and flatten each into 4-inch disk; wrap each disk in plastic and refrigerate until firm but not hard, 1 to 2 hours, before rolling. Freeze if you want to reserve longer than 2 days. The half hour rest is necessary so that the dough will become easier to roll out. The buttermilk powder also helps relax the dough and prevent gluten, which can make for a tough crust.
7. For Pie: Mix 1/2 cup granulated sugar, brown sugar, salt, zest, and cinnamon in large bowl; add apples and toss to combine. Transfer apples to Dutch oven (do not wash bowl) and cook, covered, over medium heat, stirring frequently, until apples are tender when poked with fork but still hold their shape, 15 to 20 minutes. (Apples and juices should gently simmer during cooking.) Transfer apples and juices to rimmed baking sheet and cool to room temperature, about 30 minutes. While apples cool, adjust oven rack to lowest position, place empty rimmed baking sheet on rack, and heat oven to 425 degrees.
8. Remove one disk of dough from refrigerator and roll out between two large sheets of parchment paper or plastic wrap to 12-inch circle, about 1/8 inch thick. (If dough becomes soft and/or sticky, return to refrigerator until firm.) Remove parchment from one side of dough and flip onto 9-inch pie plate; peel off second layer of parchment. Working around circumference, ease dough into plate by gently lifting edge of dough with one hand while pressing into plate bottom with other hand. Leave dough that overhangs plate in place; refrigerate until dough is firm, about 30 minutes.
9. Meanwhile, roll second disk of dough between 2 large sheets of parchment paper or plastic wrap to 12-inch circle, about 1/8 inch thick. Refrigerate, leaving dough between parchment sheets, until firm, about 30 minutes.
10. Set large colander over now-empty bowl; transfer cooled apples to colander. Shake colander to drain off as much juice as possible (cooked apples should measure about 8 cups); discard juice. Transfer apples to dough-lined pie plate; sprinkle with lemon juice.
11. Remove parchment from one side of remaining dough and flip dough onto apples; peel off second piece of parchment. Pinch edges of top and bottom dough rounds firmly together. Following illustrations 1 through 4, trim and seal edges of dough, then cut four 2-inch slits in top of dough. Brush surface with beaten egg white and sprinkle evenly with remaining teaspoon sugar.
12. Bake until top crust is golden, about 25 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 375 degrees; continue baking until juices bubble and crust is deep golden brown, 30 to 35 minutes longer. Internal temperature should be 175 degrees F. Transfer pie to wire rack; cool to almost room temperature, at least 4 hours.
13. Freezing Instructions: We (America's Test Kitchen) tried two different methods for freezing: (1) fully assembled and ready to go directly from freezer to oven and (2) divided into separate components of crust and cooked apple filling to be thawed, assembled, and baked. Both versions were good, although the reassembled pie was deemed marginally better for its slightly flakier, more evenly browned crust. You'll probably want to choose one method or the other based on how long you expect to keep a pie (or its components) in the freezer.
14. Assembled pies kept well for up to two weeks in the freezer; after that, the texture of the crust and apples suffered. To freeze an assembled pie, follow the recipe all the way through sealing the pie crust, but do not brush with egg wash. Freeze the pie for two to three hours, then wrap it tightly in a double layer of plastic wrap, followed by a layer of foil, and return it to the freezer. To bake, remove the pie from the freezer, brush it with egg wash, sprinkle with sugar, cut slits in the top crust, and place directly on the baking sheet in the preheated oven. Bake 5 to 10 minutes longer than normal.
15. For a longer freezer storage time of several months, freeze the crust and apples separately. Freeze individual batches of the cooked, drained apple filling in quart-sized freezer bags (this doubles as a great alternative to canning). Then make the pie dough, shape it into two 4-inch disks, wrap the disks tightly in a double layer of plastic wrap and foil, and freeze. When you're ready to make the pie, simply thaw the apples and crust in the refrigerator the night before, assemble as per the recipe instructions, and bake as directed. Of course, you can always just freeze the apples and make the crust fresh the day you bake the pie.

Notes

Cake flour substitute:
To make two cups of cake-and-pastry flour (cake flour), combine 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour with 1/4 cup cornstarch; proceed with your recipe.

Categories

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source

Combined recipes

servings/yield

Servings: 8
Yield: 1

rating

course

Dessert

preparation times

• Prep: 1 Hour
• Cool: 2 Hours
• Bake: 1 Hour