Saturday, March 17, 2012

Pi Day Pie

For those of you who might be culturally or mathematically unaware, Pi Day was on Wednesday. It's Pi day because March 14 is 3.14, just like Pi. Get it? Anyway, moving on. In honor of this Pi Day, I decided to make my first actual p-i-e pie ever. But because Wednesdays are my busy days, I had to postponed the pie making to the Ides of March and do it on Thursday. I was a little nervous since I'd never baked a pie before, but luckily my sweet boyfriend was around to help me. Here's how it went down: 

Pastry for 2 crusts
8 cups sliced, peeled assorted baking apples - about 3 lbs.  (Granny Smith, Cortland, Jonathan)
2 Tablespoons lemon juice
3/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 Tablespoons butter
1 egg yolk
1 Tablespoon milk

First, Brenden and I peeled and sliced about 6 Granny Smith apples.  I've always heard Granny Smith are the best for baking because they're crisp and tart. 

Next, we coated them with the 2 tablespoons of lemon juice and then added in the flour, brown sugar, white sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg.  It makes a nice, delicious, syrupy coating. Mmmmm. . 
Apples + sugar goo
And okay, here's the thing about the crust.  I have a recipe to make your own crust and I thought about doing it, I really did. BUT I had never made crust before, and there is a lot of room for error.  So, I ended up just buying the Pillsbury kind in a box, and it's probably way better than I ever could have made. I'm not too broken up about it. The filling's what really counts anyway.
After that, Brenden (who is basically the pie-master, I guess) gently placed the crust in the 9-inch pie pan and crimped the edges by hand.  We then scooped the apple + goo mix into the crust.  I was worried that we would have too many/not enough apples but it was really the perfect amount. Lucky how things work out like that, huh? We drizzled the apples with the 2 tablespoons of butter, because what's another heart attack when you've got this baby on your plate? 
 Then, we placed the second rolled-out pie crust on top of the apples and pinched the edges together, and slit the top to vent/look fancy.   Next I beat the egg yolk and milk in a bowl and Brenden brushed it on the crust. 
Everyone loves a man who bakes
  Finally, we (carefully) popped it in the oven. 15 minutes on 425, then 40-45 minutes on 350. The ovens in our apartment complex are pretty wonky, so we only did 40 on the last bit and it was fine. The egg and milk combo on the top browned nicely, but you can kind of see where some parts were coated a little more thickly. 
Straight out of the oven
After letting it cool for as long as we could stand, we sliced it up and passed out plates to the roommates. It was  a big hit and I was so proud that it turned out alright. Not bad for my first one! I'll definitely be making this one again, as soon as I can spare a few hundred calories.  
Delicious, right?

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