Plain, brown bag wraps up baking pie


June 29, 1994|By Ellen Hawks | Ellen Hawks,Sun Staff Writer

Who says you can't bake something delicious in a brown paper bag? Christine K. Roberts of Parkville came up with the request for a recipe called brown bag betty, which, she writes, is an apple pie with a bottom crust and baked in a paper bag.

From the number of responses, everyone seems to know about this pie. Chef Gilles Syglowski chose one from Shirley A. Massey of Ellicott City.

Massey's Paper Bag Apple Pie


4 to 6 large baking apples

1/2 cup sugar

2 tablespoons flour

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

2 tablespoons lemon juice


1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup flour

1/2 cup butter or margarine

1 9-inch unbaked pie crust

For the filling, peel, core and quarter the apples, then cut quarters in half. Combine sugar, 2 tablespoons flour and the nutmeg, add apples and toss. Place apple chunks in the pie crust and drizzle with lemon juice.

For the topping, cut together sugar, flour and butter or margarine using a pastry blender or two knives. Crumble mixture over apple filling.

Carefully place the pie in a large, heavy, grocery-store type paper bag. Fold over the open end at least twice and seal by stapling shut. Place bag on a large cookie sheet. Place in oven being sure bag top does not touch the heating element and bake at 425 degrees for 1 hour.

Cool on a rack before attempting to handle the pie. If you want to open bag while still hot be careful of the steam that will be created in baking.

Marylyn Harris of Ryderwood, Wash., bakes a similar pie but she substitutes quick oats for the flour in both filling and topping and uses cinnamon instead of nutmeg. She also splits the bag open immediately after baking and removes pie to cooling rack. In her letter she noted "I got this recipe when I lived in Virginia 18 years ago."

Colleen M. Duke of Baltimore notes that she checks the pie during baking by cutting a hole in the bag and, if necessary, baking a few minutes longer until pie is golden brown. Margaret A. Schultz of Reisterstown warns not to be alarmed if you smell the bag during the first few minutes of cooking. She says she places the bag on the next to bottom level of her electric oven.

Recipe requests

* Joyce Connor of Baltimore would like a recipe for a lemon, poppy seed cream pound cake "like the one sold at Basics".

* Eva Whitley of Westminster wants a "chocolate brownie recipe that called for mixing cocoa and oil then adding boiling water and beating until thickened. It may have appeared in The Sun about 10 years ago," she writes.

Chef Syglowski, with the help of chefs and students at the Baltimore International Culinary College, tested these recipes.

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