The best time of the year to make this pie is in the fall when the local farms are harvesting a variety of apples. I always look for the farmers’ bins that are labeled as “seconds.” Meaning, the apple is fine to eat but it is just not pretty. As long as the blemish on the apple is only on the surface, which will be removed when peeled to make the filling anyway, who needs a showcase apple? Take advantage of the lower price for the apples and help a farmer get rid of that part of their inventory.
I like the combination of Honey Crisp apples and Golden delicious for this pie. I use these particular types of apples because the Honey Crisp stays firm after cooking and it provides a bit of a tartness in the apple profile. The golden delicious are more of a sweet apple and it cooks to soft texture in the pie. They are also two of my favorite apples to eat, so maybe my I am justifying my excessive purchases of these apples with an excuse of making pies. I tend to pick up a half bushel of each apple at a time when I visit my local farms. I can’t beat the price and it guarantees pies because there is no way I could eat my way through that many apples.
The secret to a great apple pie is a flaky crust, filling that is more fruit than anything else and adding a little of love. The caramel sauce is a fun addition to this already fantastic dessert.
- Fresh Apple Filling Ingredients:
- apples - 4 - 5 cups peeled, cored and sliced (1/2 honey crisp, 1/2 golden delicious)
- sugar - 1 cup
- flour - 1/2 cup
- nutmeg - pinch
- Pie Dough
- unsalted butter - 8 ounces (2 sticks) or 1 cup
- flour - 2 cups all purpose, sifted
- salt - 1 teaspoon
- sugar - 2 teaspoons
- buttermilk - 1/2 cup
- vanilla extract - 1 tablespoon
- Crumble Top Ingredients:
- flour - 2 cups
- brown sugar - 1 1/2 cups
- butter - 3/4 cups softened
- cinnamon - 2 teaspoons
- salt - 1/2 teaspoon
- old fashioned oats - 2 cups
- Caramel Sauce:
- unsalted butter - 1/2 cup
- brown sugar - 1 cup
- heavy cream - 1 1/4 cup
- vanilla extract - 1 teaspoon
Pie dough directions:
In a mixing bowl, mix flour, salt, sugar, and cubed butter. Mix with a pastry blender to break up the butter slightly. Next, add the buttermilk. Knead the dough by hand until it forms a ball and butter chunks are about the size of nickels and dimes. Place in the refrigerator until ready to roll out dough. This recipe will make one large ball of dough that will make on traditional, top and bottom-crust pie.
Apple pie filling directions:
Mix pie filling ingredients until apples are completely coated. Scoop filling into the bottom crust in a 9' pie pan. Cover top of pie with traditional, lattice, or crumble topping.
Caramel sauce directions:
In a large saucepan over medium heat, melt butter. Stir in brown sugar until it completely dissolves and mixture just starts to bubble from the heat. Slowly add the heavy cram to the sugar and butter mixture while whisking. this mixture will bubble up slightly as it heats. Turn the burner to low and allow the caramel mixture to simmer for 2 or 3 minutes while occasional stirring. Turn off the heat, add the vanilla extract and stir. Serve caramel while hot and melted. This sauce can be kept warm in a double boiler for extended service time.
Bake pie at 360 degrees for 40 minutes.