A few weeks ago, I gassed up my car, bought two pounds of apples, and drove 80 miles on the southbound freeway. After an hour and a half, I dropped my grocery bags on the kitchen table and gave my friend a huge hug for the first time in four years.
We planned on making an apple pie, but somehow our lines got crossed. He thought I came over to bake the pie for us to enjoy, but I had the better idea: I would teach him and his roommate to make it themselves! And while I remembered all of the necessary ingredients—apples flour, shortening, sugar—as well as the pie tin, I completely forgot one key part: the rolling pin.
How do you roll out a pie crust without a rolling pin??
As they sipped glasses of chardonnay and puzzled over the problem, we spied the bottle sitting on the counter. We shoved the cork in snuggly, turned it sideways, and began flattening the dough.
A huge smile spread across my face when I saw their excitement as they paced around the kitchen and heard it in their voices as they proudly told their friends, “We made an apple pie—from scratch! It’s in the oven now!” They checked the pie every five minutes, cautiously covering the crust with foil to prevent it from burning, and breathed in the cinnamon scent each time they opened the oven door. After a last-minute Safeway run for vanilla ice cream, they eagerly pulled their pie from the oven and sliced into it.
A golden flaky crust, warm spiced apples, and melting vanilla ice cream… Combined with good friends and entertaining adventures… Can life get any better than this?
Double-Crusted Apple Pie
modified from CL’s Blue-Ribbon Apple Pie
Using different apples gives the pie a fuller taste and texture. Serve warm à la mode with vanilla ice cream for a classic dessert.
2 c. all-purpose flour
½ tsp salt
½ c. shortening
½ tsp vinegar
5-7 tbsp ice water
2 tsp milk
½ tbsp granulated sugar
3 different apples (I used Granny Smith, Gala, and Braeburn)
¼ c. granulated sugar
¼ c. packed light brown sugar
3 tbsp flour
2 tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp salt
- To prepare the crust, whisk together the flour and salt in a large bowl. Cut in the shortening using the back of a fork until the mixture resembles a coarse meal. Add the vinegar and 1-2 tbsp of water at a time, mixing until a dough forms. Divide the dough in half.
- Place one half of the dough between sheets of plastic wrap, and roll out to a 12” circle. Ensure that the flattened dough disc is covered with plastic wrap, and chill for 30 min, or up to 6 hr. Repeat with the second half of dough.
- Preheat the oven to 450°.
- To prepare the filling, peel and thinly slice the apples. In a large bowl, combine the apples and remaining ingredients (granulated sugar through salt), mixing well to coat each apple slice with sugar.
- Peel the plastic wrap off of one side of one disc, and lay the dough in a 9” pie tin. Peel off the other side of the plastic wrap, and let the excess dough hang over the edges of the tin. Pour the apple filling into the pie tin, and lay the second flattened dough disc on top. Crimp the edges of the two dough halves together using your knuckles, fingers, or a fork. Cut off the excess and save it! Slice six or eight lines into the top crust to vent the steam. Brush the top crust with the 2 tsp of milk, and sprinkle evenly with the ½ tbsp of remaining granulated sugar.
- Bake at 450° for 15 min. Without opening the oven door, reduce the oven temperature to 375° and let the pie cook another 40-45 min or until the top crust is golden. If the crust begins to brown, place aluminum foil over the top until the bake time is up. Let the pie cool on a wire rack for at least 20 min (or until it reaches room temperature) before serving. (This ensures that the juices from the apples filling don’t run out all over the place.)