I have a confession. I used to be a recipe hoarder.
It's true. Back before my blogging days I would work on recipes and get them JUST how I wanted them. I would serve them up. Then I would never ever share my recipes. Because... then you wouldn't need me to make them for you anymore!
Then I got over myself.
Well, almost. I'm still kind of hoarding my carrot cake recipe. It's THAT good.
Anyway... this apple pie. Before finally settling down with this recipe I tried SO many recipes! None were quite right, none were JUST how I wanted, so I set out trying this and tweaking that. I've worked on this recipe a long time, folks. YEARS. When I finally got it right the heavens opened up and sang.
Now I'm sharing my recipe. Because I love you.
Also, if I've denied you this recipe in the past. Please forgive me. I love you too. I really do.
Actually, this is two recipes. One for my piecrust which is SUPER flaky and... perfection. It's an all butter crust that's very easy to make. And VERY versatile.
Double piecrust - MAKES ENOUGH FOR A DOUBLE CRUSTED 9-INCH PIE OR TWO 9-INCH PIE SHELLS
2 cups all purpose flour
2/3 cup cake flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) (226gms) cold unsalted butter cut into tablespoon sized pieces
1/2 cup ice water
1 large egg yolk
1 teaspoon cider vinegar
Using the two different types of flour in addition to the cider vinegar cuts down on gluten production which yields a flaky crust. If no cake flour is available you can substitute it for regular flour, but the addition of the cake flour yields the best results.
I've done both and both work fine but I prefer adding the cake flour.
Using a food processor:
Pulse the flours and salt together quickly to mix. Add butter and pulse 4 times for about 1 second each (just to cut the butter into smaller pieces). Combine ice water, yolk, and cider vinegar. Pulsing rapidly, pour the liquid through in a thin stream. Continue pulsing until the dough forms large clumps and ALMOST forms into a ball (20-30 pulses). Keep an eye on it, you may not need all the liquid. Don't over pulse and overwork the dough (I mean it's fine if you do, but it just won't be as flaky in the end)
Making the dough by hand:
Combine the flours and salt in a large bowl. Add butter and cut it into the flour using a pastry cutter/blender until the mixtures looks like corn meal. Combine ice water, yolk, and cider vinegar. Sprinkle in gradually, tossing the mixture with a fork and stirring just until the dough gathers into a ball. Keep an eye on it, you may not need all the liquid.
Transfer the dough to a sheet of glad wrap. Divide the dough in two (one slightly larger than the other) and press into one-inch disks. Wrap the dough and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
Notes: Aim to handle the dough with your hands as little as possible. Warming the dough with your hands will melt the butter too soon and will make a soggier/gummy crust.
1 double pie-crust
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon
3 1/2 Tbsp flour
1/4 tsp salt
6-7 cups apples (peeled, cored, cut into quarters, then crosswise into thin slices)
1 Tbsp lemon juice
2 Tbsp cold unsalted butter, but into small pieces
2 Tbsp heavy cream
Sugar (can be substituted for raw sugar)
Preheat oven to 450F (230C). Adjust one oven rack to center of oven and the second one to the lowest position.
Roll out the larger piece of dough on a lightly floured surface to a 12-inch circle. Fit into pie plate, leaving the excess dough. Refrigerate.
Filling: combine the sugars, cinnamon, flour, and salt in a large bowl. Add apples and lemon juice. Combine well.
Roll out the second piece of dough to an 11-inch circle. Spoon the apple mixture into the bottom crust in the pie-plate, mounding it slightly in the center. Distribute the butter evenly over the apples. Brush the edges of the pastry with water and carefully place the second piece of dough on top. Press the edges of the dough together firmly and trim the excess dough. Cut 6 slits in the top of the pastry in a spoke pattern. Brush with heavy cream and sprinkle sugar on top.
Place the pie on the lower rack and bake for 20 minutes. Reduce temperature to 375F (190C) and transfer the pie to the center shelf, bake for another 45 minutes. Check for doneness of the apples.
Note: Keep an eye on the pie and make sure it isn't browning too quickly. If it seems to be browning too quickly place a loose piece of foil on top. Remove the foil a few minutes before removing the pie so that it crisps up again.
Cool for several hours on a wire rack before serving. This ensures that the filling thickens up and isn't too runny.