Handsome is as Handsome Does December 1, 2011Posted by Toy Lady in random stuff.
Remember this pie?
I’d planned to make it for Thanksgiving with my family, and I did. Sort of.
Only, well, I didn’t have the fancy-pretty leaf cutters – I’m really not a cut-out cookie sort of person.
Plus, I’m guessing that whoever made this pie? Did not have a 100-pound dog sniffing around trying to cadge any bit of pie crust scraps that may fall to the floor, either by accident or design.
The pie itself is actually kind of odd.
Not odd in a bad way – just, well, I’ve never made an apple pie quite this way.
I used our go-to pie crust recipe, so that wasn’t it, exactly.
What was odd was that just the bottom crust was blind-baked. Pay no attention to the fact that, even with a good recipe, I’m sort of pie crust- challenged. I think it has something to do the fact that I really don’t want to sacrifice a SECOND pound of beans to use as pie weights, so the top edge always looks kind of, well, slumpy.
So anyway, the next weird part. We cooked the filling ahead of time. Now granted, this is an apple-GRAPE pie, and while I always cook grape pie filling, I never cook apple pie filling. And it was 3 pounds of apples to 1 pound of grapes, so logic would normally tell me to go the apple route.
Not this time.
I used a combination of Granny Smith, Empire and another apple – I think it might have been Jonathan (I don’t actually remember what it was). I always like apple pies made with a variety of apples – that way you get some firm apples, and some that cook into a sort of puree, and some that are tart and some sweet.
And along with the mix of apples, I pulled some concord grapes out of the freezer.
The original recipe called for a pound of “red or black grapes, halved, seeded if needed” – I went with half a quart (a pint’s a pound the world around) of concord grape puree – the other half has gone into some nice smoothies.
I also used a full cup of sugar (my family prefers their pie a little sweeter) and I doubled the flour (gotta make sure it thickens!) and a pinch, maybe half a teaspoon of salt.
So after the filling reduced, and the bottom crust was baked, I let everything cool to room temperature.
And then I rolled out the top crust.
I think I mentioned that I didn’t use those adorable autumn leaf cutters – the cutter I do have?
Which, actually, I think is kind of appropriate, seeing as how the DOG WAS UNDERFOOT the entire time I was rolling out the crust.
Drop one piece of butter-and-lard dough, and you just can’t shake the dog after that!
In fact, it may get to be a problem – do you have any idea how hard it is to center a pie crust when there’s a GIANT CANINE stretched out between your feet?
Actually, it’s not that big a deal, though – bring a homely pie to the family gathering, and you just might have a couple of slices left to bring home.
Turns out they realize that it may not be pretty, but it can still taste good.