Sunday, October 11, 2009
Pie... as a Side Dish?!?
As you may have caught at the end of a recent post, I recently went apple picking with some friends (Kerstin, Lauren, Elina, Kelly and Nicole to name a few). The weather, which threatened rain, cleared up for us and it turned out to be a fantastic afternoon. I was extremely excited, and had a smile plastered on my face the entire time we were there :) Fall is my favorite season, and I have totally been eating 3 apples a day when they're in season!
I came home with a bag full of Granny Smith, MacIntosh and Macouns, and I knew the first thing that I would make with some of them... PIE! I have actually made one apple pie from scratch, a couple years before I started a blog. I actually still have the picture I took to show my mom :) What can I say, I was proud!
After my last pie disaster, I knew I had to jump back in and not be afraid of pies. This time, I actually remembered to use the apple peeler-corer that my mom had given to me! Nice to use when you're peeling more than an apple or two :)
Of course I had to put some pressure on myself, this couldn't be just any apple pie ;) Morphing an idea from Simply Organic, I used a Rosemary-studded crust and added some cave-aged gruyere to a crumb topping. It smelled heavenly in my apt while it was baking, and I thought it was pretty incredible!! To prevent myself from eating the entire pie in an embarrassingly short amount of time, I sought out the opinions of some friends. I was humbled when it got top marks across the board... hearing how much they enjoyed it made my day :) Rebecca thought it was up there as one of her favorite of my baked goods, up there with her birthday cake! Daryl (who's an excellent cook I might add) had the brilliant idea of eating a slice of this pie with pork chops or a roast. Umm, apple pie for dinner? Sign me up! He certainly has the right idea :)
Without further ado... here's the recipe. Anyone else like to play with the lines of savory and sweet??
Apple Pie w/Rosemary Crust & Gruyere Crumble
Recipe by Shannon, adapted from two recipes (on Enlightened Cooking and in Simply Organic)
1 1/2 c white whole wheat (WWW) flour
1/4 t salt
4T cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
2T neutral-flavored oil (I use a Smart Balance Blend)
3T tablespoons ice water
~1t fresh rosemary, chopped (I eyeballed this, fresh or dried thyme would also work)
~2.5lbs of apples (I used a mix of Grannys, MacIntosh, and possibly Macouns)
3/4c brown sugar, NOT packed
1/4t fresh nutmeg
2/3c WWW flour
2T ground flaxseeds
2/3c turbinado sugar (or brown sugar, but I was out)
1/2t fresh ground pepper
2T cold butter
2-3T neutral-flavored oil
4oz cave-aged gruyere (Cheddar or Asiago are other good options)
Whisk together flour and salt in a medium bowl. Using a pastry blender (or 2 forks), cut in butter and cream cheese until crumbly (you want it to look like pebbles). Add oil and stir until moistened. Sprinkle rosemary and water over flour mix and toss with a fork to combine. Knead dough in the bowl a few times, then press together into a disk and wrap in 2 layers of plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 30 min (I made mine a day ahead).
Roll out dough in between 2 pieces of parchment paper. Have your pie plate out to make sure the circle is larger than the dish. Peel one sheet of parchment off your dough and invert over pie plate. Peel off the back piece of parchment, then press dough into the pan. Crimp the edges with your fingers, then prick the dough. Refrigerate the crust again while the oven is preheating.
*I prebaked my crust for 15min at 375deg in the lower third of the oven, but I thought my crust got a little dark. I might cut this back to 5-10min or not prebake at all next time* If prebaking, let crust cool before assembling.
Preheat oven to 350deg. In a large bowl, combine filling ingredients. To prepare the topping, combine flour, flax, sugar, pepper and cheese in a medium bowl. Grate butter into mix and add 2T oil. Using a fork, mix topping, adding more oil until the mixture is moistened. Refrigerate until ready to use.
Add filling to prepared pie crust and and spray the edges of the crust with nonstick spray. Bake (in middle of oven) for 20min, then add crumb topping and continue baking for 40min, or until crust is browned and apples are soft. Cool on a rack before slicing (the longer you wait, the better it sets up. I had to leave the house :)). Enjoy slightly warmed or at room temperature. Pick your side/topping!