I really do love spending time in the kitchen; trying my hand at cooking or baking, when I can. Maybe it’s because most of the women in my family cook or because so many wonderful memories are usually surrounded by eating, conversation around the table or sitting at the counter while my grandma or mom were busy stirring and mixing some delicious meal. In fact, when you talk to most people, the kitchen was the heart of their home, rather than the living or a den.
But, I digress. I love the holiday season, because that means I get to try out festive treats. This time, it just so happens to be apple pie. Last week, my mom and I decided to use some of the apples we had picked on our excursion to Tehachapi and bake them into a pie and it was glorious. I actually probably love the process of making it more than I do eating it. Can I open a bakery already??
So, we tried using my grandma’s recipe because she was an incredible cook and baker, but it was hard to follow her recipe, because she would usually just sort of experiment with how much flour, sugar or whatever other ingredient was needed. My mom and I are SO not those people, so we ended up googling a recipe…From Pillsbury, which we also found was located on the box of the pie crust we’d bought. Eh, you live and learn.
- box Pillsbury™ refrigerated pie crusts, softened as directed on box
- cups thinly sliced, peeled apples (6 medium)
- cup sugar
- tablespoons all-purpose flour
- teaspoon ground cinnamon
- teaspoon salt
- teaspoon ground nutmeg
- tablespoon lemon juice
First, I peeled the apples with THE coolest gadget ever. You place the apple on the stand (to the left), then spin the wheel until another piece of plastic sets on top of the apple stem.
Keep spinning until the apple is bare and the skin is shredded around it.
My mom chopped all of the apples into little bits. She preferred it that way, because she said she couldn’t cut the slices pretty…Whatever works, right?
Then, we added all of the fun stuff like cinnamon and sugar and mixed it all together to have the best of both worlds, just like Hannah Montana would do. No, I’m kidding, but we did mix it.
Next, came one of my favorite parts. We pulled out our pie crust and placed it in the pie pan, like so, which became a little tricky to keep it pretty. But, it did its job.
After the first half of the pie crust was in, we poured the apples into it and distributed it evenly. We also added in some Red Hot candies, which was part of my grandma’s recipe, for a little extra flavor and it gives a nice red color at the end.
From there, we closed the ingredients in with another pie crust. The pie pan we used, while decorative and festive, also made it harder to pinch the crusts together and still look pretty. We did our best with it, and adding fork marks to the top covers a multitude of sins, let me tell you. I’m also a big fan of adding cute marks to the top. A couple of years ago, my mom and I topped it with leaf cut outs, and I LOVED it. This year, I just made simple hearts on top, which I free-handed and was extremely proud of. And, of course, I left a few slits in the top to let the pie breathe while baking.
Above, was our finished product, with ooey gooey goodness dripping out. I don’t usually like processes, because it’s time consuming and being the impatient person that I am, I like things to happen right then. But, with pie baking, it’s an art I can understand and you have this beautiful masterpiece to show for it afterwards.
For the full recipe, visit Pillsbury’s site for the official steps.
That’s all for now,