Ok, this is really Martha Stewart's Spiced Apple Pie from the November issue of her magazine. But if you make the fluted round cutouts instead of a traditional crust, everyone who sees it will shout "How'd you DO THAT?" It's like clockwork, every time. Anyway, to get this result is really not that hard...and it turns out so gorgeous.
(Note to self...buy a Martha Stewart Living subscription. I keep buying them at the grocery store check out, a huge rip off. Although worth every penny.)
So about my pie: I brought this for dessert at a friend's house, and paired it with the salted butter caramel ice cream (previous recipe). It was a great pairing. I baked the pie the day before, and we warmed it up during dinner at 350 for 15 minutes, which was perfect. It was a plate-licker.
The following day my husband and I reheated the few leftovers we had in the microwave. I don't suggest that technique, it destroys the flakiness of the crust. One must not destroy a Martha pie.
Keep in mind, this pie requires a lot of time. Not energy, but time. You spend a lot of time refrigerating things for one hour, and then an eternity in the oven. Don't do what I did and start when you are supposed to be meeting someone at the park with your children later...you will be held hostage at home by your pie. Be sure you have some free time.
So, here's the recipe...enjoy it!
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, chilled
1 1/2 teaspoons course salt
1 Tb. granulated sugar
2 1/4 sticks cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
7 - 10 Tb ice water (I used 8)
Pulse flour, salt and sugar in a food processor. Add butter nd pulse until you get course crumbs, about 10 seconds.
With food processor running, add ice water slowly in a steady stream, until dough holds together and is neither wet or sticky. About 30 seconds.
Divide dough into two portions, and shape each into a disk. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or overnight. It can be frozen for up to one month, just thaw it in the refrigerator overnight before using.
To make the fluted piecrust:
You will need a fluted round cutter (1 3/4 inch or 2 1/2 inch)
Roll out one portion of the dough to 1/8 inch thick and fit it into the pie plate. Roll out the remaining dough to 1/8 inch thick and use a 1 3/4 inch fluted round cutter to cut out about 70 rounds, re-rolling the scraps. (I used a 2 1/2 inch cutter and made 40 rounds).
Place the filling in the pie plate, mounding it in the center. Lightly brush the edge of the crust with an egg wash of 1 Tb. heavy cream and 1 egg yolk.
Arrange the rounds around the perimeter (all the way to the edge) of the piecrust and on top of the filling, overlapping them slightly. Lightly brush the top of each round with egg wash as you work so they will adhere to one another.
Repeat the process, overlapping rounds in a spiral all the way to the center, until the pie is covered. Lightly brush the entire surface with egg was and sprinkly with fine sanding sugar. Refrigerate for one hour before baking.
Spiced Apple Pie:
Makes one 9 inch double-crust pie
Pâte Brisée (above recipe)
4 pounds Granny Smith apples
1 Tb finely grated lemon zest
2 tsp. fresh lemon juice
3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
1 tsp. coarse salt
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
3 Tb. cold unsalted butter cut into small pieces
1 large egg yolk
1 Tb. heavy cream
On a lightly floured work surface, roll 1 disk of dough to 1/8 inch thick. Fit into a 9 inch deep dish pie plate. Trim edges flush with rim, refrigerate for one hour.
Roll remaining disk of dough to 1/8 inch thick. Cut out 70 rounds with a 1 3/4 inch fluted round cutter. Place rounds on a parchment-lined baking sheet and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Peel and core apples. Thinly slice half of them, cut remaining apples into 1 inch pieces.
Toss together the apples, lemon zest and juice, sugars, flour, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg in a large bowl. Place filling in the piecrust, mounding in the center. Dot with butter. To make the egg wash, whish the egg yolk and cream in a small bowl. Lightly brush the edge of the piecrust with the egg wash. Arrange the dough rounds over the filling, working in a spiral from the outside in to the center, overlapping as you go. Use the egg was to help them stick together. Once the filling has been covered, brush the entire top of pie with egg wash and sprinkle the top with sanding sugar. Refrigerate pie for 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F., with racks in the middle and lower positions. Place a foil-lined baking sheet on the lower rack to catch any juices. Place the pie on the middle rack and bake until the crust begins to turn golden brown, about 25 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 375 and bake until the crust is golden brown and juices are bubbling, about 1 hour 10 minutes (I did 45 minutes and it was done, my oven runs hotter I think). Tent with foil if the crust browns too quickly. Let cool completely on a wire rack.