Mama G’s Apple Pie

Fall coming around always makes me excited for several reasons:  Cute layered outfits, boots, Chiefs football, Buffs football, and baking anything and everything.  This year we had another thing to be excited about: apples.IMG_6976

We planted an apple tree a couple of years ago and this was the first year I was supposed to leave a few of the flowers so fruit could actually grow.  The lovely folks at my favorite garden center told me to pick 100% the flowers the first spring, 75% the second spring, 50% the third and so on.  The reason for this is so that the tree can use its energy to put down solid roots instead of growing fruit.  Even after picking 75% of the flowers off this year we had gobs of apples!  This means that I have been able to work on my apple pie recipe…

IMG_3876I like a classic, flaky crust that is not too thick and an apple mixture that has a good amount of spice to it.  I also like the apples to be cut nice and thin so that they stack up together and stay in place while you are enjoying a slice.  Random thing that drives me crazy: When you take a bite of pie and the giant apple quarter comes out in one piece with the crust just collapsing on everything.  I want the perfect combo of apple and crust in every bite.

When it comes to crust, I do not think you can beat the King Arthur Flour Recipes:

Double Crust Recipe here.

Single Crust Recipe here.

I use the double crust recipe for this pie.  My kids love helping with the “squishy part” which is what they call squeezing the shortening and butter into the flour.  For my fellow Coloradans and others at high altitude/dry climates: I find myself adding much more water to this recipe than what is called for.  Just keep adding a tablespoon at a time until it all comes together without being sticky.

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Yes, we sometimes bake in PJs and dress up attire.

Now for the apples…IMG_3840

Ingredients:

  • 5-6 apples depending on size
  • 1 Tablespoon cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup flour

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Recipe:

  1. Make the crusts first as directed in the recipe above, wrap them with plastic wrap, and put them in the fridge to cool.
  2. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  3. Peel, core, and thinly slice the apples.  I like to use my apple corer/peeler/slicer to do this all in one step.
  4. Cut the apples in half.  Apples come off my corer/peeler/slicer looking like a whole apple.  A quick slice from top to bottom makes perfect thin slices.
  5. Mix the apples, spices, sugar, and flour in a bowl.
  6. Roll out your pie crusts and put one in the pie dish.  I like to use a silicon mat and plastic wrap to make this easy and to keep the dough from sticking to the counter or rolling pin.
  7. Paint the first crust with an egg white.  This keeps the bottom from getting soggy.
  8. Dump the apple mix in the pie crust and push the apples around to make sure there are not any empty pockets.IMG_3862
  9. Top the apple mix with the next pie crust.
  10. Seal the edges of the crust.
  11. Cut a few slits in the top crust.  I like to top my pies with a few crust cut outs and the kids really enjoy helping with this part.  You could use small cookie cutters but I love these little crust stampers.

  12. Cover the pie completely with foil.
  13. Bake for 30 minutes then turn temperature down to 375 degrees and remove foil.
  14. Bake for 30 minutes uncovered or until crust is golden brown.
  15. Let cool for 5-10 minutes then serve with ice-cream, whipped cream, or just by itself.  Enjoy!

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Happy Cooking!

Mel

High tea baby shower: Recipes and source list

A colleague of mine is having a baby this summer so I wanted to throw a little baby shower for her.  I always struggle coming up with themes but this one was a hit so I wanted to share the recipes and sources I was able to find that made it come together.

My inspiration for this was actually something we did for my Working Moms MOPS group.  We put together a formal high tea for our last meeting this year.  I was also looking for a reason to get my grandmother’s tea set out and actually use it!

I made tea sandwiches, punch, lavender cookies, fruit and cheese bites, and had various types of tea available.  I bought some chocolates and a colleague brought some delicious homemade scones.

Here are the recipes I used (great ideas from other people):

Punch Recipe (both a blue and pink version)

Lavender cookies (recipe from the MOPS magazine “Hello, Dearest”)

Sources of various products I used:

Runner

Napkins

Serving towers

Tea pack

This was very easy to pull together and like I said, it went over very well.  It was easy to quickly get some water boiling between conversations and refill the pot occasionally.  The amount of food was perfect for 5-6 people and I felt like I was actually able to enjoy the get together without having to coordinate too much.

It really was a fun little get together and something I will definitely do again!