Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Martha's Pretty Pretty Pie!

I was watching Martha's Cooking School on PBS this weekend. She was making her mile-high apple pie, with its fancy pie crust (pate brisee). I was mesmerized by her fairly simple process. Martha's pie was a  9-inch, deep dish confection. I wanted to make the same thing but I wanted to use a foil pie tin because the pie isn't staying here - it's going to my sister Anne's house and she has big plans for it. I bought a whole bunch of foil pie tins over the weekend, thinking I'll be baking apple pies like crazy and sending them on their various ways over the next few months.The fall and early winter bring lots of baking to my kitchen -- pies, bundt cakes, cookie platters. Friends make requests and I can accommodate a certain amount, but I can't let it get too crazy or it'll be all work and no play for me, since there's that full-time job thing!  Anyway, THIS pie is beautiful. It's based on Martha Stewart's Mile-High Apple Pie (linked here) but I actually made two smaller pies. Martha uses a deep-dish 9-inch pie plate - my foil pans are a bit smaller so I divided the apple/cinnamon mixture into two parts and got two pies from the recipe (double crust recipe, though). I baked one last night and one this morning, since I don't have to be at work until 1 pm today (another late night at the Tang Museum - a fun place to be if I have to work late!)...

Here are some photos of the mess I made in my kitchen, followed by the recipe!

Made some pie crust cookies from the left-over dough!
Great with ice cream and fruit preserves!

based on Martha Stewart's Mile-High Apple Pie
9-inch deep dish pie plate
Preheated 450-degree F oven

Pie crust dough for deep dish pie  (or Pate Bresee, recipe linked here)
5 1/2 lbs. of 2-3 different typses of tart apples, peeled, cored, and cut into small slices (I used Empire and Cortland; Granny Smith work well too)
Juice of 2 lemons
1 cup sugar, plus more for sprinkling
1/2 cup all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling
2 teaspoons cinnamon
3 tablespoons chilled, unsalted butter, cut in small pieces (I forgot this!!!)
1 egg yolk

Divide chilled pie crust dough into 2 parts, one slightly larger than the other. On well-floured surface, will a floured rolling pin, roll out smaller portion into a 15-inch circle. Roll dough over rolling pin and unroll over pie plate, gently lowering into plate. If dough breaks, just press it back together. Note: using enough flour is key here - if dough sticks to surface, nudge it away bit by bit with a sharp knife.

Combine apple slices with lemon juice, flour, sugar, and cinnamon. Toss till well coated. Pile apples into pie crust.

Roll larger portion of dough into 18-inch circle, making sure to use enough flour to prevent sticking. Roll dough onto rolling pin and unroll over apples. Trim edges to about an inch beyond the edge of the pie plate. Fold bottom crust over top crust to create an edge. Press it to seal. Flute or press edge with knife to seal.

Pierce top in 4-5 places for steam vents.

Brush with egg wash (egg yolk whisked with 2 teaspoons water). If you'd like, make leaves and stems from excess pie crust dough. It will adhere nicely with egg wash. Brush decorations with egg wash. Sprinkle surface of pie with sugar (I like to use sanding sugar).

Refrigerate pie for 15 minutes before placing in oven.  Important tip from Martha: "cold pie, hot oven"

Place chilled pie on baking sheet (to prevent spills). I lined my with parchment paper to catch any spills and minimize clean up.

Bake at 450-degrees for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 350-degrees and bake for 45 minutes more, for a total baking time of one hour.

While the pie is baking, clean up the mess you made, and savor the aroma coming from your oven!

Remove from oven and admire your creative genius!


  1. What's not to love about an apple pie? (Especially when you live in upstate NY)!

    1. I know - the first day of fall arrives and something inside me just orders "make apple pie!" So, I did!

  2. Warm homemade pie on a frosty day....with coffee or tea and good company ! What more could you ask for ! CKJ

  3. That pie looks absolutely beautiful! A masterpiece! Lynn E.

    1. Thanks Lynn! I heard it was very much enjoyed! Hope to bake a lot of them this fall!