That is what my husband said after he took the first bite of this homemade apple pie I made for him. The next were, “Don’t tell my mom.” My husband had just gotten back from being away for weeks because of work and I knew one of his favourite things in the world was apple pie. I have made many versions of apple pie before but I wanted to try a new technique. I wanted to pre-cook the filling.
My Auntie Laima is a fan of cooking the filling before baking the apple pie and when she told me about this technique I thought to myself, that is genius! I really do not like crunchy apple pie filling. I find most pie recipes have the pie in the oven long enough to bake the crust but not necessarily bake the apples through.
I peeled and sliced six granny smith apples a 1/4″ thick. I sauteed the apples in 3 tbsp of butter for 5 minutes, I now recommend cooking them for just 3 minutes. I brought my filling dangerously close to being overcooked. It ended up being perfect but still, next time I will lessen the cooking time here. Then I added 1 tsp cinnamon and 1 1/3 cup sugar.
When the apples started to soften I added 1 tbsp brandy and 1 tsp maple extract. When I thought the apples were done I added about 1 tbsp whipping cream. Cool.
While the apples were cooking I worked on rolling out my pie dough. I used The Professional Pastry Chef’s pie crust for Quiche Lorraine but I doubled the recipe since I needed a top and a bottom. I had put together this dough a couple of days ago via my food processor and when I saw these little pieces of butter showing throughout I knew I had successfully not over-processed the dough.
I find the best way to move the dough of a pie crust from board to plate is by draping it over a wooden rolling pin and then sliding it over to the buttered pie plate ASAP.
I added the filling and most of the cooking liquid. Next time I may add even more apples, amazing how six apples cook down like that! I covered the dough in an egg wash so it would brown nicely and added some sugar for texture.
Personal Note: Fellow foodie Hayden wrote and mentioned I forgot to say how long I baked it for and it has been a while. I recommend baking it in a preheated 375F oven for 45 minutes. Check at 30 minutes just to be sure.
This was the best apple pie I have ever eaten too! The crust was perfection and the filling melted in my mouth. A perfect way to celebrate not only the holidays but my husband’s homecoming and please, don’t tell his Mom, OK?