Apple Crumble Pie

SPRING BREAAKKK!!! After my cohort survived another quarter of PT school, I am home sweet home in California! Somewhat ironically, it’s raining here and beautifully sunny in Seattle, but I’m just excited to be home with my family and friends to to see some of the kids I coach at our local (outdoor!!!) pool.

Anyway, this week was Pi Day! I realized this the day before so one of my classmates and I decided to make pie for pi day, since we didn’t have any finals on Wednesday. So we did some studying as we baked, then ate our sorrows and stress away with this delicious apple pie, and some vanilla ice cream of course. I put together this recipe fromSally’s Baking Addiction andSimply Recipes, and made some adjustments based on ingredients I had on hand and our tastes. Instead of using walnuts in the crumble topping, I used a mixture of almonds and oats, which turned out wonderfully! I also increased the spices, as usual. For the crust, I used an all-butter recipe, since I don’t use lard and I don’t keep shortening on hand.

The crust was quite good, although not the flakiest I’ve ever had, but I’m also not super picky about crusts. The apple filling fared well in the oven, the apples maintaining a bit of crisp but still getting nice and tender and soaking up the sugar and spice flavor during the baking, and I loved the addition of the crumble topping instead of a top crust, especially when paired with the ice cream. Here’s the recipe!

Apple Crumble Pie

Makes 1 pie

Time: ~2 hours, with cooling

Adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction and Simply Recipes

Ingredients

Crust:

1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour

2 tsp granulated sugar

½ tsp salt

½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cold, cubed

3-4 tbsp ice cold water

Filling:

5 apples, cored, peeled, and sliced about ¼ inch thick (I used 3 Granny Smith and 2 Fuji)

1/4 cup all-purpose flour

2 tsp cinnamon

½ tsp nutmeg

½ tsp cloves

1/3 cup granulated sugar

2 tbsp lemon juice

1 tsp vanilla extract

Crumble topping:

½ cup brown sugar

1 tsp cinnamon

¾ cup all-purpose flour

½ cup unsalted toasted sliced almonds

¼ cup old fashioned rolled oats (if you don’t have/like nuts or have a nut allergy you can use ¾ cup oats and omit the almonds)

1/3 cup unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled

Directions

To make the crust: Pulse together the flour, sugar, and salt in a food processor. Add the cubed butter and pulse until the butter is distributed and the mixture resembles a coarse meal. Add in 2 tbsp of the water, pulse until distributed, and if the dough doesn’t stick together when pressed, add more water 1 tbsp at a time. When the dough holds together if pressed together, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface, gently mold it into a round disc, and wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least one hour (I just made mine the night before and let it sit overnight).

When you’re ready to make the pie, take out the dough to let it soften a bit for ease of rolling. Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface until you have about a 12 inch circle. Roll the dough around the rolling pin and unroll it into a 9” pie pan. Trim the edges off with a paring knife or kitchen scissors, leaving about ¾” overhang. Roll the overhang underneath, then crimp the edges. Here’s a helpful video for fluting the edges: http://www.finecooking.com/article/how-to-crimp-a-pie-crust

To make the filling: Place the sliced apples in a large bowl, then sprinkle the flour, spices, sugar, lemon juice, and vanilla over the apples. Mix together with a spatula or wooden spoon. Let this sit while you make the crumble topping and preheat the oven to let the apples release some of their juice. Preheat the oven to 400˚F.

To make the crumble topping: Mix together the brown sugar, flour, almonds, oats, and cinnamon. Add the melted butter and stir to combine until the topping forms large crumbs.

To assemble the pie: Pour the apple filling into the crust (our apples weren’t super juicy but if there’s a lot of excess liquid leave some of it in the bowl to avoid the pie getting soggy). Crumble the topping evenly over the apples. Bake for 20 minutes at 400˚F, then cover the crust with a pie crust shield (or use some foil, like we did). Lower the heat to 375˚F and bake for another 40-45 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool at room temperature for at least 45 minutes before serving. The longer you let it cool, the more the filling will thicken up, but it also tastes delicious freshly warm out of the oven J Enjoy!

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Blueberry Pie Bars

It’s summertime! That means summer fruits, and these bars from Averie Cooks highlight one of my favorites: blueberries! I love fresh, plump, juicy, sweet blueberries, and summer is the perfect time to enjoy them. These blueberry pie bars are better than blueberry pie, with a shortbread crust, gooey yogurt filling interspersed with plenty of plump blueberries, and more shortbread as a crumble topping! These bars are quite simple to make, but yield delicious results! If you love sweet pie crusts and gooey filling, then these bars are for you! I loved this crust, as it was tender but sweet, and doubled as a delicious, crispy crumble topping as well. The sweet blueberries combined with the yogurt keep these bars moist, and the blueberries release their juices after being baked, adding extra flavor and sweetness to the filling. I wouldn’t change anything about these bars in the future, except maybe doubling the batch!

I mostly followed the recipe, with a couple changes. I made the shortbread crust in the food processor, dumping all the ingredients in, then pulsing till a rough dough started to form. I also used 1/4 heaping cup non-fat Greek yogurt and 1/4 heaping cup low fat vanilla (not Greek) yogurt, since that’s all I had. I used fresh blueberries instead of frozen, but my baking time was still 60 minutes. I originally started with 45, but the bars still seemed too gooey after that, until I left them in for the full 60. I probably could have taken them out at 55, if I wanted a slightly less brown crust, but they were still nicely done after 60.

For the recipe, hop on over to Averie Cooks!

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Yum! Look at those beautiful layers of crust, filling, and crumble topping!

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The perfect summertime dessert!

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Mississippi Mud Pie

Happy New Year! To kick off the new year, I’m sharing a challenge recipe with you that Shelby and I made last week. This recipe has three different layers of chocolate. Great start. Be warned though, this is not easy. It takes a long time to make, and is quite complicated. But it tastes so good, it’s worth the effort! Especially for chocolate lovers.

Shelby and I made four things the night we made this pie, and as a result we ran a little short on ingredients… whoops. So we ended up halving the flourless chocolate cake layer, and after making the entire cake, we had half the pudding leftover. So, the recipe I am sharing with you today is the recipe we made with my suggestions. If you would like to make the original, head on over to Cooking Classy. We decreased the Oreo crust, since the amount of Oreos required seemed excessive. We also had no whipping cream, and neither of us like whipped cream, so we cut out that layer entirely, making this cake three layers of pure, unadulterated chocolate heaven.

Mississippi Mud Pie

adapted from Cooking Classy

Ingredients

Crust

24 Oreo cookies

3 tbsp unsalted butter, melted

Flourless Chocolate Cake

3 oz  (1/2 cup) bittersweet chocolate chips or chopped chocolate

2 tbsp unsalted butter

2 tbsp water

1.5 tsp unsweetened cocoa powder

1/4 tsp salt

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/4 cup brown sugar

1/4 cup granulated sugar

Chocolate Pudding

6 tbsp granulated sugar

3 large eggs, room temperature, separated

1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

4 tbsp cornstarch

1/4 tsp salt

2 egg yolks

1 1/4 cups milk (I used fat-free)

2 tbsp unsalted butter

1/4 cup bittersweet chocolate chips or chopped chocolate

1 tsp vanilla extract

Directions

For the crust, preheat the oven to 300˚F and grease a 9-inch springform pan. For the crust, crush the Oreo cookies into fine crumbs and combine with melted butter. Press the mixture into the bottom and sides of the springform pan and press into an even layer along the bottom and up the sides of the pan. Chill in the freezer for 10 minutes, then bake for 10 minutes. Remove and allow to cool.

For the flourless chocolate cake, increase the oven temperature to 350˚F. Melt the chocolate chips and butter in the microwave at 50% power in 30 second intervals until melted and smooth. In a separate bowl, whisk together water, cocoa powder, salt, and and vanilla. In an electric mixer with a whisk attachment (I used my new KitchenAid!!!), whip the yolks with the brown sugar until pale and fluffy. At water mixture and blend until combined. In a clean mixer bowl (it has to be clean or the egg whites won’t whip!) whip the egg whites until foamy, then increase the speed while slowly adding in the granulated sugar until soft peaks form. Fold the egg white mixture into the yolk/chocolate mixture until just combined. Pour mixture into the cooled crust and bake for 25-30 minutes, until the cake is just set. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely.

For the pudding, in a medium saucepan, whisk together granulated sugar, cocoa powder, cornstarch, and salt. Stir in egg yolks and mix until combined. Whisk in the milk, and bring the whole mixture to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly. Allow to boil for 30 seconds, then remove from heat and pour into bowl. Add the butter, chocolate chips, and vanilla and stir until combined. Allow to cool at room temperature for a bit, then cover with plastic wrap pressing on the top to prevent a skin from forming, and refrigerate for a couple hours or overnight.

To assemble the pie, spread the pudding evenly over the top of the cake. Chill the finished product in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes, the longer the better, until the pudding is set. Cut into slices and enjoy!

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Note: We were impatient and cut the cake before it was finished chilling, which is why the pudding went all over the place, so sorry about the pictures, but it tasted amazing!

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Here’s the cake layer!

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Complete with pudding layer!

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Ahhh delicious chocolate 🙂