Joy the Baker Homemade Decadence: Apple Pie

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I feel like this is going to be a major UGH post.

First of all, I had planned to get this done while en route to Disney World before my vacay had officially started…but alas, that did not happen.

Second, since returning, things have been crazy…so yeah…it still has not happened…so I’m now posting my final recipe for Joy the Baker (our October selection) in mid-November.  #isuck

Now that I have that out of the way, we can move onto the pie….

I had high hopes for this apple pie.  The smells of all the apples and cinnamon and such filled me with the most delicious, cozy feelings.  I mean, that pic above is enough to make me want to jump into a pile of leaves.

But…ugh…but it just didn’t quite work out.  I’m not sure exactly where I went wrong, but my pie filling was basically soup.

UGH!

There was simply too much liquid…and cutting into the pie was just alarming…so much liquid I actually had to scoop it out and dump it down the drain.

I did some post-mortem style research and apparently there are a few things that could’ve happened…I didn’t drain the apples long enough (one site I saw recommends letting them drain for 90 minutes…I did about 40 and clearly that wasn’t enough).  I also read things about adding tapioca or adding pads of butter and some flour that could help, but I didn’t do any of those.  I know that the one time I have made apple pie in the past, I cooked my apple pie filling and there was none of this soupy mess…so I think I may stick with that style of apple filling in the future.

The crust was ok when cooked.  Nice flavour, but it wasn’t super flakey…though that could’ve been ruined by the soupy filling.  The apple filling also tasted pretty good too, but it definitely missed that saucy, sweetness that the liquid would’ve normally turned into.

img_35631Would I recommend this recipe…probably not.  I think I would be willing to try it again, however, especially with a few tweaks just to see what its like when it works…if it works.  I know Joy is a master of pies and I’m not…so maybe this was simply my error and not hers….or perhaps it was both of us. lol.

img_35541Oh!  One other thing to note – I added some cranberries to the filling- I was a bit short on apples and so I added a few cranberries to make up the extra volume…a really fun way to add some flavour and colour!

Recipe rating: 2.5 knives out of 5

*****

Joy the Baker Homemade Decadence: Apple Pie

Makes filling for one 9-inch pie

2 1/2 lbs of baking apples, peeled, cored and sliced 1/4 inch thick (I used Braemar, Gala, Golden Delicious and Granny Smith)

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

14 cup packed light brown sugar

1/4 cup plus two tablespoons granulated sugar

1/2 to  1 1/2 teaspoons of ground cinnamon (obvs to taste, I split the difference)

1/4 teaspoon of freshly grated nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon of salt

2 tablespoons of unsalted butter

1 large egg, beaten

In a large bowl, combine the apples, lemon juice, brown sugar, 1/4 cup of granulated sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt.  Cover and let sit at room temperature for 30 minutes.

Transfer the apples and their juices to a colander set over a bowl.  Let drain until you have at least 1/2 a cup of liquid (NOTE!  30 minutes is not long enough…def. need more time than 30 minutes to drain the liquid or your pies are going to be watery AF!  Try 90 minutes instead).  Bring the liquid to a boil in a small, nonstick saucepan set over medium-high heat (this smells amazing, btw).  Add the butter and cook until it is syrupy and lightly caramelized and reduced to about 1/3 of a cup, about five minutes.  Swirl the liquid in the pan, there is no need to stir.

Meanwhile transfer the apples to a bowl and toss them with the cornstarch.  Pour the syrup over the apples and toss gently.  Do not be concerned if the liquid hardens on contact with the apples, it will dissolve during baking.

Transfer your apple mixture to your pie shell.  Lightly brush the border of the bottom crust with water and put the top crust over the fruit.  Trim the overhang so that the crust overhangs by only 1/2 inch.  Tuck the overhang under the bottom crust and press to seal.  Crimp the border using the tines of a fork or your fingers, and cut about 5 evenly spaced 2-inch vents in the top.  Cover the pie loosely with plastic wrap and refrigerate for an hour before baking.

Put a rack in the centre of the oven and preheat the oven to 400F.  Put a foil-lined baking sheet on the centre rack of the oven.

Brush the top of the pie with the egg and sprinkle generously with the remaining 2 tablespoons of granulated sugar.  Put the pie on the foil lined baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes.  Reduce the oven temperature to 350F and bake until the juices bubble and the apples feel tender but not mushy, when a small, sharp knife is inserted through a vent, 35-40 minutes.  If the pie seems to be browning too quickly, make a loose foil tent to put over the pie while it bakes.  Transfer the pie to a rack and let cool for at least 4 hours before cutting.

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