Apple Crumb Pie

You know how they tell you to bake something when you are trying to sell your house to create a warm, homey atmosphere? Something that will entice potential buyers to decide that yours is the house they must have? Well this pie is the thing to try--it makes your house smell amazing!! And it tastes amazing too! Warm cinnamony spiced apples, flaky pastry crust and sweet crumbly streusel topping--this pie is a house seller for sure!

Apple Crumb Pie

You'd think that we were trying to sell our house or something, but you'd be wrong. I think I've just been watching HGTV too much! Anyway, putting real estate theories aside, the only reason you need to make this pie is that it is just so darn good!

I like to bake this in a deep pie dish because I always use way more apples than I should and in a regular pie plate there would be a lot of overflow. See what I mean-I always get carried away--

But overloading makes for an extremely apple-rich pie and that's what I like. Then, in order to properly cover the pile of apples, I make a double recipe of the crumb topping--what could be better? This pie is sort of a cross between apple crisp and apple pie, which to me is like the meeting of the best of two worlds. When you take it out of the oven, the topping gets all golden brown but you can see bubbling brown apple gooeyness in the crevices. It's so tempting to cut into it right away, but if you do the whole things just falls apart, so try and be patient!

If you do, you'll be rewarded with a towering slice chock full of apples--

Add a scoop of vanilla ice cream and people will cheer! (And want to buy your house too, particularly if you include the pie in the deal!!)

Apple Crumb Pie

Serves 8-10
Prep Time:  30 minutes (not including chilling and rolling out of pie dough); Bake Time:  About 1 hour and 10 minutes


For the Pie Crust

  • 2 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, cut into small cubes and rechilled until ready to use
  • 1/2 cup frozen solid vegetable shortening, cut into 1/2 cubes (I used Crisco)
  • 5 tablespoons ice water (maybe more)

or the Filling

  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 10-12 apples (I usually use Granny Smith but often mix them with Honey Crisp or another firm slightly tart variety), peeled, cored and thinly sliced
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

For the Streusel topping

  • 1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, cut into small cubes and chilled

The Recipe

For the Pie Crust

1.  Using a food processor, blend flour, sugar and salt. Add butter and shortening cubes and pulse until the mixture looks like coarse meal.

2.  Transfer to a medium sized bowl and add the 5 tablespoons of water, using a fork to mix until the dough begins to come together. Add more water by the teaspoonful if it seems too dry.

3.  Gather the dough into a ball and turn out onto a flat surface. Divide it in half and and flatten each half into a disk. Wrap each disk in plastic and chill for at at least 2 hours and preferably overnight. 

4.  Remove the dough from the refrigerator and let it sit a bit to soften if it seems too cold to roll out. Meanwhile lightly flour a board or work surface, and with a lightly floured rolling pin, working from the center out, roll the dough out into a 12 inch circle, lifting and rotating the dough several times to make sure it's not sticking. Then loosely roll dough around rolling pin to transfer it and very carefully position it over the pan and unroll it, gently pressing dough down into a 9 or 10 inch extra-deep pie plate. Trim overhang and crimp edges using your thumb and finger to make the indentations or any way you like. Set aside.

5.  Preheat oven to 375ºF. 

6.  To make Filling:  Place apples in a large bowl. Combine sugar, flour and cinnamon in a small bowl. Pour sugar mixture over the apples and toss well to coat the slices. Spoon the apples into the pie pan. Sprinkle with the lemon juice and place the pie on a cookie sheet. Set aside.

7.  To make the topping, mix the flour and sugar together in a medium bowl. Add the cubed butter and using a pastry blender, mix until it resembles coarse meal. Carefully place the mixture all over the apples, pressing down a bit so that the crumb adheres to the apples. If any falls over the side onto the cookie sheet, gather it together and press it on top.

8.  Bake for about 1 hour and 10 minutes, until top is golden brown and you can see juices bubbling below. Cool on a wire rack until firm enough to cut. 

9.  You can make this one day ahead and store at room temperature and reheat in a 300ºF oven for about 15-20 minutes before serving if you like.


Note:   Pie crust is adapted from an old issue of Bon Appetit Magazine. Filling and crumb are loosely based on Apple Crumb Pie from Kathleen's Bake Shop Cookbook, by Kathleen King.











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