Tales from the Team: The Best Apple Pie

This is the second post in Tales from the Team – a series of reflections, thoughts, and behind-the-scenes stories from our coordinating team. Today, Communications Coordinator Maddy Rotman conquers apple pie. 

When I was in high school, I fell off of a homemade zip-line and chipped three of my front teeth. They have been bonded (a dentists version of magic) and my fake teeth go by unnoticed; but my front teeth have lost their natural strength. A side effect of my dangerous and orally traumatising escapades was my dentist’s orders to not bite into apples for fear of breaking my fake front teeth. So, I have to get creative with the apples that come in my share. 

Recently, with a lightly flour-dusted face, I’ve turned to pie. 

Apple Pie
Makes one 9-inch pie

For the Dough
1 1/4 C all-purpose flour
 1/2 t salt
1/2 t sugar
1 stick unsalted butter, cold and cut into 1” cubes
2-4 T ice water

  1. In a food processor, briefly pulse flour, salt, and sugar. Add butter and pulse until mixture resembles coarse meal, with a few pea-size pieces of butter remaining. Sprinkle with 2 tablespoons ice water. Pulse until dough is crumbly but holds together when squeezed (if necessary, add up to 2 tablespoons water, 1 tablespoon at a time).
  2. Turn dough out onto a large piece of plastic wrap. Fold plastic over dough; press to shape into a 1-inch-thick disk. Refrigerate until firm, at least 1 hour.

For the Filling
4 baking apples*
1 T lemon juice
1/2 C + 1 T sugar
2 T all purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 t cinnamon
 1/4 t ground nutmeg
1 egg white, beaten lightly

*From this week's share

  1. Adjust oven rack to lowest position and heat oven to 500°F. Remove one piece of dough from refrigerator (if refrigerated longer than 1 hour, let stand at room temperature until malleable).
  2. Roll dough on lightly floured work surface. Transfer dough to a 9-inch pie plate. Working around circumference of pie plate, ease dough into pan corners by gently lifting dough edges with one hand while pressing around pan bottom with other hand. Leave dough that overhangs lip of plate in place; refrigerate dough-lined pie plate.
  3. Peel, core and cut apples in half, and in half again width-wise; cut quarters into 1/4-inch slices and toss with lemon juice.  In a medium bowl, mix 3/4 cup sugar, flour, salt, and spices. Toss dry ingredients with apples. Turn fruit mixture, including juices, into chilled pie shell and mound slightly in center.
  4. Roll out second piece of dough to 12-inch disk and place over filling. Trim top and bottom edges to 1/2-inch beyond pan lip. Tuck this rim of dough underneath itself so that folded edge is flush with pan lip. Flute edging or press with fork tines to seal. Cut four slits on dough top. If pie dough is very soft, place in freezer for 10 minutes. Brush egg white onto top of crust and sprinkle evenly with remaining 1 tablespoon sugar.
  5. Place pie on baking sheet and lower oven temperature to 425°F. Bake until top crust is golden, about 25 minutes. Rotate pie and reduce oven temperature to 375°F; continue baking until juices bubble and crust is deep golden brown, 30-35 minutes longer.
  6. Transfer pie to wire rack; cool to room temperature.
  7. Get friends together and eat it!