This is the basic apple pie that I’ve been making for decades. My first recipe came from Joy of Cooking, and in later years I’ve added a few tweaks from America’s Test Kitchen. My one ironclad rule—keep everything cold, especially if making during hot weather. Dip your hands in ice water and dry them off. Chill bowls, forks, flour, butter…everything. The point? Melted butter won’t make a flakey crust. Also, I’ve always made my pie crusts with 100% butter.
Fruit pies don’t lend themselves to a low carb diet, but cream pies do. Try this one from the Ruled.me website. It’s delicious.
Yield: one double-crust 9″ pie
5—6 cups apples (Granny Smith & Honeycrisp or Braeburn); peeled, cored, thinly sliced (1/4″)
1/2 to 2/3 cup white sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 to 1-1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon powdered ginger
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
1-1/2 tablespoons butter
FOR THE PASTRY
Process flour, sugar, and salt together in food processor until combined, about 5 seconds. Scatter butter over top and pulse mixture until it resembles coarse crumbs, about 10-15 pulses. (To do this by hand, freeze the butter and grate it into the flour using the large holes on a box grater. The rub the flour-coated pieces between your cool fingers for about a minute.)
Transfer flour mixture into large bowl. Sprinkle 6 tablespoons of ice water over the dough. Use a cold fork to lift ingredients, spreading the water throughout. If needed to hold the dough together, add a bit more ice water. When you can gather the dough up into a tidy ball, stop handling it.
Divide dough into 2 pieces onto a sheet of plastic wrap and flatten into a 4-inch disk. Wrap each piece tightly in plastic and refrigerate for 1 hour.
Before rolling dough out, let it sit on counter to soften slightly, about 10 minutes. Roll each disk into a 12-inch circle on a lightly-floured counter. Loosely roll dough around a rolling pin and gently unroll onto a 9-inch pie plate. Settle dough into the plate by gently lifting a pastry edge with one hand, and pressing the pastry into the plate bottom with the other hand.
Roll other disk of dough into 12-inch circle on a lightly floured counter, then transfer to parchment paper–lined baking sheet; cover with plastic and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Adjust oven rack to lowest position, place rimmed baking sheet on rack, and heat oven to 450 degrees.
FOR THE APPLE FILLING
Only very tart apples need the larger amount of sugar. Only very juicy apples require the larger amount of cornstarch. Stir apples gently with the sugar, salt, cornstarch, spices, lemon juice, and zest until they are well coated. Place the apple slices in layers in the pie shell. Mound slightly in the middle. Dot with butter.
Loosely roll remaining dough round around rolling pin and gently unroll it onto filling. Trim overhang to 1/2 inch beyond lip of pie plate. Pinch edges of top and bottom crusts firmly together. Tuck overhang under itself; folded edge should be flush with edge of pie plate. Crimp dough evenly around edge of pie using your fingers. Cut four 2-inch slits in top of dough. Brush surface with beaten egg white and sprinkle evenly with remaining 1 tablespoon sugar.
Place the pie on heated baking sheet, reduce oven to 350 degrees, and bake until lightly golden, 35 to 45 minutes. Let pie cool on wire rack to room temperature, about 4 hours. Serve.