Category Archives: Christmas

Dutch Apple Pie

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One of the best things I did a dozen or so years ago was take a pie-making class.  Not only did I walk away with some good recipes, but I also lost my fear of making pie and ditched the concept that a perfect looking pie equals a perfect tasting pie.  Best of all, I learned how to make this Dutch apple pie, and over the years I’ve made this pie more often than any other.  Some of my children request my Dutch apple pie instead of birthday cake.

The pictures I’m using in this post are representative of what happens when I make it.  I was lucky to get a quick shot of the last slice!

 

Dutch Apple Pie Recipe

Ingredients:
1 unbaked pie crust
6 medium Granny Smith apples
1 cup sugar
1-1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
3 Tablespoons Tapioca
1-1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

for Dutch crumb topping:
5-2/3 Tablespoons cold butter
1/2 cup sugar
3/4 cup flour

Prepare the filling:

Fill a large bowl with a few ice cubes and 2-3 inches of cold water.  Add 1 teaspoon of salt to cold water.  This salted ice water will keep your apple slices fresh.  Peel and slice apples, placing apple slices into water.

Roll out pie crust into pie dish.  Note:  my favorite pie dishes are Emile Henry ceramicsThey are made in France, and are high quality and beautiful.  My pies always bake perfectly in these dishes!  They also make great gifts.

Drain water from bowl.  Add 1 cup sugar, cinnamon, Tapioca and lemon juice.  Mix together gently to avoid breaking apple slices.

Arrange applies in pie shell.

To prepare the Dutch crumb topping:

In mixing bowl, combine flour and 1/2 cup sugar.  Cut cold butter into slices and add to flour mixture.  Combine with pastry cutter or using a hand mixer.  Spoon topping over apples, spreading over entire top of pie to the edges of the pie crust.

Bake:

Line baking sheet with parchment paper and place in oven on rack BELOW the rack your pie will bake on.  This will catch any drips as the fruit cooks.

Bake pie at 425 for 15 minutes.  Turn oven temperature down to 350, cover lightly with foil and bake an additional 45-50 minutes.

Remove pie from oven and allow to sit at least 20 minutes before slicing.  Serve warm or cold with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream.

Enjoy!

During the holidays I serve this pie along with these other favorites:
Chocolate Pecan Tart
Coconut Cream Pie

Check out my favorite tools for pie making here.

Happy baking!
Jennifer

Chocolate Pecan Tart

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Years ago I tried a new recipe on a whim for Thanksgiving.  It has been requested every year since then, and this Chocolate Pecan Tart has become as much a part of our holiday traditions as pumpkin or apple pie.  Rich in flavor, it is an elegant addition to any holiday dessert as well as being an excellent combination of pecan and chocolate pies.  It’s also a dessert offering that appeals to those who don’t care for pie crust or traditional pies.  The tart has a chocolate crust, a thin layer of pecan pie filling and a top layer of chocolate ganache.

Chocolate Pecan Tart

Crust:
7 Tb. butter
1 cup flour
1/4 cup sugar
1/8 tsp. salt
2 Tb. heavy cream
2 heaping Tb. semi-sweet chocolate chips

In a food processor, cream the butter.  Beat in flour, sugar and salt.  Place chocolate chips in small bowl.  Heat cream and pour over chocolate; whisk to melt chocolate.  Add chocolate cream to dough and beat to combine.  Turn out onto lightly floured surface, then shape into a disk and refrigerate dough for 30 minutes.

Pat dough over the bottom and up sides of a 10-11 inch tart mold with a removable bottom such as this one.  Set aside.  Preheat oven to 325.

Pecan Filling:
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1 1/2 eggs (one egg plus one half of a beaten egg)
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 Tb. melted butter
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 1/4 cup pecans, chopped into bite size pieces

In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together corn syrup, eggs, butter, sugar vanilla and salt.  When combined, add pecan pieces and stir to coat.  Gently pour over uncooked tart shell.  Bake until a knife inserted into the pie filling comes out clean, about 25-35 minutes.  Remove from oven and cool completely.

Ganache:

1 cup plus 2 Tb. heavy whipping cream
12 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips

In a small saucepan, heat cream to a simmer.  Place chocolate chips in small bowl.  Pour cream over chocolate and whisk to combine.  Pour ganache over cooled pie and let set.  Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Note:  I always make this tart a day in advance so it can be refrigerated overnight.  It is best served cold.  During the holidays I serve this Chocolate Pecan Tart along with these favorites:
Dutch Apple Pie
Coconut Cream Pie

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Click here to see my list of tools I love and always use when making pies.  I hope you enjoy this tart as much as we do!  Happy baking!
Jennifer

Coconut Cream Pie

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There’s nothing better than a from-scratch cream pie!  My husband is a big fan of coconut, which motivated me to perfect this recipe.  This coconut cream pie is often on the dessert menu at holiday gatherings and I always look forward to making it.

Coconut Cream Pie

1- 9 inch pie crust, baked in pan and cooled completely

1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup flour
2-1/2 cups milk
2/3 cup heavy cream
6 egg yolks, beaten
2-1/4 cups flaked coconut

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Preparation:

Combine sugar, flour, milk and cream in a heavy saucepan.  Cook over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until thick and bubbly.  Continue to boil for one more minute, then remove from heat.

In a medium bowl, beat egg yolks.  Using a 1/4 cup measure, gradually stir small amounts of hot cream mixture into the egg yolks, beating as you pour the cream mixture in.   I slowly pour 1/4 cup at a time while I mix.  Continue this until you have mixed 1/4 of the total amount of cream mixture into the egg yolks.  Pour the yolk mixture back into the remaining hot mixture and return to heat, stirring constantly.  Cook for 2 minutes.  Remove from heat and stir in coconut.  Pour into baked pie shell.

Chill until ready to serve.  Before serving, cover pie with whipped cream and toasted coconut.  Slice and enjoy!

I often serve this coconut cream pie at holiday gatherings with these other favorites:
Chocolate Pecan Tart
Dutch Apple Pie

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I put together a list of my favorite tools for making pies.  You can find it here.  I hope you love this recipe!

Happy baking!
Jennifer

 

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