The classic American pie

October 25, 1998|By Annette Gooch | Annette Gooch,UNIVERSAL PRESS SYNDICATE

Anyone with a reputation for fine apple pie probably has strong opinions about what apples ought to go into it. A tart, firm variety that keeps its shape after an hour's baking - Granny Smith, Rhode Island Greening, Rome or Northern Spy - is the favorite of many a pie maker. For others, the apple of their eye is a mellow Gravenstein or a sweet Golden Delicious.

Given the trend among more and more large commercial growers to limit production to a startlingly few all-purpose varieties, finding a reliably good pie apple may require research. Some produce markets still offer several kinds of baking, cooking and dessert apples. In apple-growing areas, farmers' markets, roadside stands and pick-your-own orchards often have harder-to-find varieties.

The proportion of sugar to fruit in this recipe is based on tart or sour apples. For Golden Delicious, reduce the sugar by [ cup. If the only apples available are bland, sprinkle the slices with a tablespoon of lemon juice.

Cole Publishing Group

Apple Pie

Serves 6 to 8

3/4 cup sugar

1/4 cup flour

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1 teaspoon grated lemon zest

5 large, tart cooking apples, peeled, cored and thinly sliced (8 to 10 cups)

pie crust (use a recipe for flaky pie crust or buy 2 unbaked single crusts for 9-inch pie pan)

1 tablespoon butter (optional)

2 tablespoons milk

sugar for crust

In a large bowl, mix sugar, flour, cinnamon, nutmeg and lemon zest. Add apple slices and coat lightly with sugar mixture.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Fit bottom crust into 9-inch pie pan. Fill with apple mixture. Dot with butter (if used).

Place second crust over apples. Trim and flute edge. Pierce pastry in several places or cut holes in top crust to allow steam to escape. Brush with milk; sprinkle with 1 to 2 tablespoons sugar.

Bake until pastry is golden brown and apples are tender when pierced with a toothpick (from 1 hour to 1 hour and 10 minutes). Cool on a wire rack; serve warm or at room temperature.

Pub Date: 10/25/98

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