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« Butternut Squash Biscuits | Main | Apple Cinnamon Pancakes »

Classic Apple Pie

Apple Pie

I have forgotten the smell of leaves. This is an admission of which I am not proud. I've been so focused on myself and my new job lately that I haven't taken time to really enjoy the world around me. With winter fast approaching, I feel like there is less time to appreciate this unique time of year.

Each day I see less of the sun. This week I arrived to work in the dark, the sun below the horizon, the sky a fading grey. The view outside my living room window has turned into a noisy and abrasive construction site. I cannot even see anything green—no grass, no trees, no leaves. The changing of the autumn colors feels completely hidden from me. I feel out of touch with the season.

Apple Pie Apple Pie

This weekend I had plans to stay indoors and work, when my boyfriend told me to put down the books. We're going outside, he instructed me. You need some fresh air. He was right. I had not spent any real time outdoors for months. We packed ourselves into the car, granola bars in the console, camera bags at our feet. We found a state park near my new town, parked the car, and went exploring.

The air was crisp, yet holding onto a little warmth from earlier in the season. The ground was damp and soft, smelling rich and earthy from a morning rain. The leaves didn't crunch beneath my heels, but being surrounded by the vibrant colors was plenty for me. We walked the winding trails, overlooking lakes and small valleys. It was a source of rehabilitation for me, a calm moment in the whirlwind that is life.

Autumn Colors Autumn Colors Autumn Colors Autumn Colors

Though I adore it, I have had apple pie only once or twice in my life. My first bite was at fourteen years old, sitting in a neighbor's kitchen, the reward for raking up a yard full of leaves. A dusting of stray leaves were left on the deck and the afternoon sun was golden, vivid details of a quiet moment. It seems such a chance memory now, remnants of a childhood past, but it has nevertheless stayed with me. And that pie, that pie has stayed with me too.

After returning home, pulling off shoes, and unbuttoning coats, I felt a new energy within me. Returning to the kitchen, I channeled it, creating the pie that happened upon my memories. Perhaps the best baking comes from outside inspiration.

Apple Pie Apple Pie

This Classic Apple Pie will stand the test of time, but rarely last longer than an afternoon. Apples are peeled and sliced, coated with cinnamon and spice, and mounded freely into a pie plate. Depending on the sweetness of your apples, you can add more or less brown sugar, but I found that 1/2 cup was enough for my slightly sweet apples. Brushed with egg and a dusting of sugar before baking, the crust comes out golden and flaky. Serve with family and friends, to warm your home, and to create memories to share.

One Year Ago: Bourbon Peach & Thyme Jam and Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Scones
Two Years Ago: 3 Milk Coconut Cake and Blackberry Lemonade
Three Years Ago: Whole Wheat Banana Pancakes and Cinnamon Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

Classic Apple Pie

2 9-inch pie dough rounds, chilled
3 lbs (1.4 kg) baking apples, such as Braeburn, Gala, or Honeycrisp
1 tablespoon lemon juice
3 tablespoons butter, melted
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 cup (100 grams) brown sugar, packed
2 tablespoons flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 large egg
Granulated sugar, for sprinkling

Peel, core, and slice the apples into 1/4-inch slices. Place apples into a large bowl and toss with lemon juice to prevent browning. Coat evenly in melted butter. Set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the spices, brown sugar, flour, and salt. Toss over the apples until they are evenly coated.

On a lightly floured surface, roll out each pie dough round into a 12-inch circle. Place the first round into a 9-inch pie plate, pressing down into the edges. Place the apples into the pie plate, mounding them in the center. Cover the top with the remaining pie dough round and seal the edges by pinching them together.

In a small bowl, whisk together the egg with a tablespoon of water. Brush over the pie dough. Sprinkle with granulated sugar, if desired. Using a sharp knife, cut in a few slits for the steam to release. Chill pie for at least 1/2 hour before baking, particularly if the dough has softened.

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C). Bake pie for 25 minutes before lowering oven temperature to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Bake for an additional 25-35 minutes, or until golden brown. If the edges begin to darken too quickly, cover with aluminum foil to prevent additional browning.

Cool pie for at least 3 hours before slicing and serving.

Reader Comments (26)

Your pie looks perfect, just perfect. Love your photographs too.
Gorgeous photos, and delicious-looking apple pie.
10.17.2013 | Unregistered CommenterTammela
Gorgeous pictures. Isn't fall beautiful? It's definitely my favorite time of year, both in terms of food and the weather!
This classic looks perfect! I need to enjoy the fall leaves more too...thanks for the reminder :)
Wow, beautiful shoot with the prettiest autumn colors!
10.17.2013 | Unregistered CommenterKatrine
This is a gorgeous pie!

xo Jennifer
10.17.2013 | Unregistered CommenterJennifer
Simple and beautiful.
10.17.2013 | Unregistered CommenterSarah
This pie looks perfect, as does the fall weather! I love the changing leaves and am eating pretty much everything apple and spice lately! can't get enough!
10.17.2013 | Unregistered CommenterJoanna
You can't beat a good ol' classic. Especially when it looks as gorgeous as this.
New to your blog and so happy to have found you! So glad you got out and were inspired to make this gorgeous pie. Beautiful photography, your blog is a lovely place.
As always your photos are absolutely stunning!! You've inspired me to make a fruit pie, even if it is the beginning of spring here...lovely post :)
I made this fantastic apple pie for my family. Today you were the one who inspired me :) Thank you
10.20.2013 | Unregistered Commentersandokan
I made this yesterday for a sunday treat and it was delicious! Everyone was excited! Your blog is a sweet treasure. Greetings from Greece
10.21.2013 | Unregistered CommenterFoteini
Pie and photographs are really amazing... I'll try the recipe :)
10.21.2013 | Unregistered CommenterFeray
I am adding this recipe to my collection. Thanks for sharing!
Wow, stunning view! This pie screams fall comfort food. It's gorgeous.
What beautiful autumn pictures! The rich colors are fantastic. Thoroughly enjoy your blog.
10.23.2013 | Unregistered CommenterKate
I love apple pie. It's very rare to get a decent one. Bad pastry, not much fruit. I'll have to make one now that you've got me thinking about it. Great photos.
10.26.2013 | Unregistered CommenterSudhakar
Hi there,

Is this Virginia in your photos? I have a hunch that it is, and I'm glad the East Coast beauty and Shenandoah Hills are growing on you. Where is your new job?
As I've always wanted to say to you, I so appreciate what you share in words, pictures and flavors; it is always comforting. I tell everyone about your blog and make half the things you post.


10.28.2013 | Unregistered CommenterChelsea Bryan
Chelsea-- Thank you! I actually live in the middle of lakes country in Minnesota, though I can see how it looks similar to the landscape in Virginia with the woods. I'm a high school science teacher, baker and blogger by night.
10.28.2013 | Registered CommenterKristin Rosenau
Gorgeous pictures, and an amazing sounding pie!
That pie is gorgeous. I'm so jealous of your fall colors - ever since I moved to AZ I still get equally as excited for fall even though there is no discernible change in my surroundings (like, yay the high is only in the 80/90s instead of 100s!) hahaha - I miss the fall colors dearly though and try to escape back home to the midwest once a year to catch them, though I missed this year's trip unfortunately so I will just have to live vicariously through your gorgeous photos.
11.4.2013 | Unregistered Commenternatalie
Beautiful photography & post. Pinned to my baking board & hope to try your recipe sometime.
This pie looks delicious! I am going to try out the recipe, but I am going to try Citric Acid (lemon juice substitute) for it.
11.25.2013 | Unregistered CommenterGinny Story
Hello! Thank you for a wonderful recipe! Your whole post was amazing! I love fall, and being in AZ, I really am in awe when I look at pictures like these. Brought a smile to my face, and so did that pie! It was the perfect way to end my thanksgiving night!
11.28.2013 | Unregistered CommenterMimi_vintagelove
Turned to you for the first apple pie I ever made and it made for a delightful end to Thanksgiving. Thank you!
12.3.2013 | Unregistered CommenterMila

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