Glammed Up Apple Pie

Glammed Up Apple Pie I Pretty Little Pastimes

I warned you in my last post that you would be seeing more apple recipes coming you way and here you have it! I knew when I went apple picking that I would need to try my hand at baking my very first apple pie. I could have made a hundred different dishes with exotic flavors from complicated recipes, but there is just nothing more comforting than a warm homemade apple pie. The smell of cinnamon and nutmeg coming from the oven was enough to make me a very impatient baker. They say a watched pot never boils, but I will add that a watched pie never browns!

As you probably guessed from the Greek letters, I am a Sigma Kappa Sorority alumnae. Although I graduated college some years ago, I am still very active as both an advisor and alumnae chapter officer. Since my trip to the apple orchards was part of an alumnae chapter event, I decided to glam up my pie with a little sorority flare! I was nervous about freehand cutting hearts from the dough, but I was very pleased with the results and really think it adds a little extra charm to the finished product. I wanted to share it here, because I think (even without the letters) it would make a great fall treat for someone special, or a thoughtful gift for the host of a dinner party. Enjoy!

Traditional Apple Pie

  • 5 and 1/2 cups apples (I used a mix of Courtland, Empire & Gala)
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup pure granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • favorite homemade (or ready-made) double pie crust

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Begin prepping the filling by peeling, coring and slicing your apples. In a large bowl, mix sliced apples, lemon juice, sugars, flour, vanilla, cinnamon and nutmeg. Toss until apples are evenly coated. Fill bottom pie crust with the apple mix.

Roll out the top pie crust and cut out small hearts using a paring knife or very small cookie cutter. Adhere the cut out pieces of dough by brushing the back of each with a small amount of milk or water, just enough to make it sticky, but not soggy. Carefully lay the top pie crust over the filled pie and crimp the edges, hopefully a little prettier than my attempt!

Place pie in oven and bake for 15 minutes to brown. Lower the temperature of the oven to 350 degrees and bake for an additional 35-45 minutes, or until golden brown. Once finished, remove the pie and transfer it to a wire rack to cool. Serve warm with fresh whipped cream.

*Baking tip* After 30 minutes of baking, loosely cover the edges of the pie with a thin layer of aluminum foil to avoid over-browning.

Apple Pie Smoothie

Apple Pie Smoothie I Pretty Little PastimesIt took me a few weeks to come to terms with the fact that summer was really over and that fall was here. It’s not that I don’t enjoy fall, beautiful foliage, new boots and pumpkin EVERYTHING, I mean, what’s not to love? It’s just knowing what comes next … ugh, winter! I have survived four winters since leaving California, so you would imagine that I would be beginning to accept it’s existence, but, alas, I am still in denial.

Rather than sulk as I pack away my sundresses and swimsuits, I decided to embrace fall and try my hand at a couple of new adventures. The first was apple picking! A group of friends and I made the trek to Russell Orchards in Ipswich, MA for a day of hay rides, cider doughnuts, and wine tasting. I’m sure they could all tell that I was the orchard newbie when I cringed at the idea of taking one bite out of an apple and throwing the rest on the ground. I guess that “don’t be a litter bug” mentality it ingrained deep inside. Once I saw a bunch of bees happily taking care of the discarded apples, I felt much better. By the end of the day, I had a huge bag apples, fresh cider, homemade jam and even a mini pumpkin to take home. Success!

Apple Picking I Pretty Little Pastimes

As I make my way through my stock pile of apples, I will continue to share recipes and photos. I will start with a simple (and tasty) apple pie smoothie. Oh, and if you have any must-try apple recipes for me, please send them my way!

Apple Pie Smoothie

  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup milk (I used almond milk)
  • 1/3 cup old fashioned oats
  • 1/3 cup vanilla yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon chia seeds
  • 1 apple, sliced and cored
  • 1 banana, frozen
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon (or to taste)
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg (or to taste)
  • handful of ice cubes

Add all ingredients into a high speed blender. Blend until smooth. Add additional ice cubes until desired consistency.

For cinnamon sugar rim: Dip glass rim onto a shallow dish of water. Mix 1/4 cup brown sugar and 1 teaspoon cinnamon onto a flat plate. Dip moistened rim into sugar mixture, shaking off excess. Garnish with an apple slice and enjoy!