By Mike Majlak
Let me start off by saying- I don’t cook. I’m the classic man. If you gave me a few frozen burgers, I could grill ‘em up and they might just be edible. But if you put me in charge of say, a lasagna- things might not turn out too well. Baking, especially, is something I have no clue about but I am eager to learn. To start off, I will need to buy all the right equipment. Luckily websites like The Buyers Impact (more here)review all different kinds of products so I could find the best tools.
That being said, the culinary craft is not lost in my family. My mom Robin (the same mom who brought you the ultimate Macaroni n Cheese walkthrough) is constantly trying to teach me a thing or two about her passion. She invited me back into her kitchen to showcase the perfect apple pie to gobble on right before you slump down into your favorite couch for your annual L-tryptophan sponsored sleep session.
First she sent me to the grocery store to pick up some ingredients. Between scrolling Instagram and text messaging, I was somehow able to grab them correctly on the first try:
4 pounds Granny Smith apples, peeled, quartered, and cored
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 teaspoon orange zest
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed orange juice
1/2 cup sugar, plus 1 teaspoon to sprinkle on top
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
Pie Crust (follow recipe below)
1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon water
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Cut each apple quarter in thirds crosswise and combine in a bowl with the zests, juices, 1/2 cup sugar, flour, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
Roll out half the pie dough and drape it over a 9- or 10-inch pie pan to extend about 1/2-inch over the rim. Don’t stretch the dough; if it’s too small, just put it back on the board and re-roll it.
Fill the pie with the apple mixture. Brush the edge of the bottom pie crust with the egg wash so the top crust will adhere. Top with the second crust and trim the edges to about 1-inch over the rim. Tuck the edge of the top crust under the edge of the bottom crust and crimp the 2 together with your fingers or a fork. Brush the entire top crust with the egg wash, sprinkle with 1 teaspoon sugar, and cut 4 or 5 slits.
Place the pie on a sheet pan and bake for 1 to 1 1/4 hours, or until the crust is browned and the juices begin to bubble out. Be sure to leave slits in crust exposed to allow moisture to vent out! Serve warm.
12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) very cold unsalted butter
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon sugar
1/3 cup very cold vegetable shortening
6 to 8 tablespoons (about 1/2 cup) ice water
Dice the butter and return it to the refrigerator while you prepare the flour mixture. Place the flour, salt, and sugar in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade and pulse a few times to mix. Add the butter and shortening. Pulse 8 to 12 times, until the butter is the size of peas. With the machine running, pour the ice water down the feed tube and pulse the machine until the dough begins to form a ball. Dump out on a floured board and roll into a ball. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Cut the dough in half. Roll each piece on a well-floured board into a circle, rolling from the center to the edge, turning and flouring the dough to make sure it doesn’t stick to the board. Fold the dough in half, place in a pie pan, and unfold to fit the pan. Repeat with the top crust.
Yield: 2 (10-inch) crusts (top and bottom)
I wish I could take some credit for the baking that was involved in this pie, but I really can’t. Instead I’ll take this time to personally thank all the beautiful mothers out there who make Thanksgiving dinner so easy on all us guys. Love ya mom!
Thanks to guest contributor Mike Majlak for sharing with us. Do you usually bake your own Thanksgiving Day dessert?! Let us know in the comments!
–Shawny, Founder of Lovesac & Life on a Couch