Last year right around this time, I made my first ever pie. It’s my Grammie’s family-famous apple pie recipe, and it’s kind of a big deal in my neck of the woods. When I told my mom last year I wanted to try it her response was a semi-frightened look and, “Are you sure?” Yeah, Grammie’s pies are serious business. And it turned out being such a success that we had it again at Thanksgiving this year! This recipe has been handed down through the generations in my family, and was written probably sometime in the 40’s or 50’s. Read on for the full recipe, along with some tips that I added from our own trial and error.
Note: These measurements are for a 9-inch pie pan, with a little dough left over to create the leaves. You’ll need a pastry cutter for sure, and we used a flour sack towel to roll the dough on. We also used little leaf cookie cutters to make the edges — you can find a similar set here.
2 c flour
1 tsp salt
¾ c plus one T Crisco
4 T ice water
Mix flour and salt. Cut in shortening to a fine cornmeal consistency. Add 1 more T shortening and cut in rough. Add all water, sprinkling a little at a time while fluffing flour mixture.
Form into a ball. Roll out on floured cloth to fit pie pan. Flour rolling pin & cloth. Add more flour as needed, but don’t over-do it or your crust will crumble.
Carefully get the crust into the pie pan. We had to try this step twice because our first try was a sad mess. We got ours into the pan with a little teamwork. And when in doubt, a patch job works just fine. I never said it was pretty, folks.
MAKE THE FILLING
5 large Granny Smith apples
3/4 c sugar
2 t cinnamon
Peel apples and slice very thin; set aside. Mix sugar, flour, and cinnamon. Alternate layers of apples with the sugar mix in the pie crust. Start on the bottom with apples, laying them out evenly so that the bottom of the pan is covered. Sprinkle sugar mixture on top. Repeat until you get to the top of the pan.
CRUMB TOPPING (Editor’s note: YUM)
½ c brown sugar
1 c flour
1 t cinnamon
1/2 c butter
Mix brown sugar, flour, and cinnamon thoroughly. Cut in butter until you reach a crumbly consistency. Spread over top of pie.
After crumb topping is spread, scatter dough leaves around the edges of the pie plate if desired. If the leaves start to burn while the pie is cooking, place a strip of tin foil around the edges of the pie plate to protect them.
Bake at 375 for about 25 minutes, or until filling begins to bubble. I’ve made this twice now in two different ovens; once it took 25 minutes and once it took 35. Just be sure that the filling is bubbling slightly and the crust is a bit browned before you take it out.
Hope you try this one — it’s a little labor intensive but makes you feel pretty proud when you get to the end. And it’s cuh-razy delicious. Happy holidays! xoxo
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