We almost called this “apples pie” because what makes this apple pie recipe stand apart is its blend of various types of apples, which creates a dimensional, complex pie. Every apple has its own flavor and texture profile, and by carefully picking and choosing apples that complement one another, a great pie is born. We like to have at least one apple that remains somewhat firm and another that breaks down and creates body for the filling. That’s the minimum. By adding a third apple for its unique flavors, the pie becomes even more intriguing. See our Tips for more apple choices and ideas. The proportion of chosen apples is up to you; just think about which characteristics you want to highlight.
Image: Peter Muka
- 1 recipe double crust Pie Crust, chilled and ready to roll out
- 10 cups thinly sliced, peeled and cored apples (about 10 apples), use a mixture of crisp, soft and flavorful apples
- ¾ cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- 2 tablespoons to ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
- 1 tablespoon milk
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- Pinch cinnamon
- For the Filling: Position rack in middle of oven. Preheat oven to 400°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet pan with parchment paper; set aside. Coat a 9 ½-inch x 1½-inch tempered glass pie plate with nonstick spray. Toss together apple slices, sugar, lemon juice and cinnamon and let sit 15 minutes. Add smaller amount of flour if apple mixture is dry, larger amount if it is very juicy.
- Roll out 1 dough disc on lightly floured surface to a 12-inch round. Transfer to pie plate. Scrape filling into crust and dot with butter.
- Roll out second dough disc on floured surface to 13-inch round and drape over filling. Trim dough overhang to ½ inch. Press top crust and bottom crust together at edge to seal. Fold edges under; crimp edge decoratively. Slash top in a few places to create steam vents.
- For the Topping: Brush pie crust with milk. Combine sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle evenly over pie. Place pie on prepared pan. Place in oven, turn oven down to 375°F and bake for about 50 to 55 minutes or until crust is golden brown and filling is bubbling.
- Cool on rack for 30 minutes to allow juices to thicken. Serve warm or at room temperature. Store at room temperature for up to 6 hours. Serve with vanilla ice cream, if desired.
- Our absolute favorite combination of readily available apples is Granny Smith, for tartness and crispness; Cortland, for sweetness and which breaks down and provides body; and Golden Delicious and/or Empire for flavor. We also like to take advantage of lesser-known apples and encourage you to seek out your own local fruit. Here are a few to consider: Northern Spy, balanced flavor/somewhat soft; Baldwin, wine-y flavor/crisp; Spitzenburg, spicy/juicy/aromatic; Ginger Gold, sweet/mildly tart; Idared, sweet/tart; Jonagold, sweet/tart; somewhat soft.
- The apples available will also depend on timing. Gravenstein apples (crisp/tart), for instance, are available very early in the season and then disappear. Go to www.allaboutapples.com to read about hundreds of varieties. With names like Arkansas Black, Caville Rouge d’Automne, Honeygold, Pink Pearl and Strawberry Pippin, there is a world of flavors and textures to explore. You can also read our article on The Best Apples for Baking.
- When working with pie crust, work swiftly. If it overly softens, refrigerate at any step along the way, including once the whole pie is assembled. You want it to be cool and firm when it goes in the high-heat oven.