Baking Steps: Thankful for Apple Pie

The first time I made apple pie was for Thanksgiving back in October of 2012. I was making caramel apple pie as well as a caramel apple upside down cake. I guess I was in a bit of a caramel phase! I went to Costco to stock up on a big bag of apples and set off to work…

I had never made my own pie crust so I tackled that first. My mom was always afraid of making her own pie crust which caused me to be fearful as well!  I used Crisco and after multiple tries to roll out the dough I got it! The next step was a long one- peeling, coring and slicing the apples. I spent the next hour or so working with the bag of apples and by the end of it I thought I’d pass out if I saw another unpeeled one! I heard that if you put the cut apples into a bowl of water with some lemon juice it would keep them from browning. For the caramel in the pie, I bought ready made squares that I unwrapped and placed in and around the wedges of apples. They melted perfectly and provided some chewiness to the pie! I tried to do a lattice top and it didn’t quite work out well… let’s just say that I now know why the strips of dough go over and under each other for even baking! For the caramel upside down cake, I got all my cake ingredients together and made my own caramel to use as my base. I was hesitant and concerned that the caramel wouldn’t hold the apples and that when my upside down cake became right side up, I’d have two desserts! Thankfully when the moment of truth came it turned out beautifully. Personally, I liked the cake more than the pie because visually it was a work of art with the spiraling and overlapping apple wedges. I went a little overboard on the apple slicing so I made another round of the apple themed desserts. I brought them to a couple Thanksgiving dinners and they got rave reviews! I was so impressed with how much I had learnt for the occasion; how to make my own pie crust and bake with apples!

Failed Lattice Top Apple Pie Caramel Apple Upside Down Cake

The second time I made an apple pie was to take on a surf trip to Tofino. A friend of Jason’s wanted me to teach her how to bake something because she’s “never baked anything” in her whole life! I was absolutely shocked by that statement because I’ve always grown up around my mom or my grandmother baking up sweet smelling goodies. I decided that an apple pie would be a good place to start. I didn’t want to just make cookies (as easy as they are) because it just isn’t as impressive as a pie. To me, for just a little more work you come out with something that has the power to wow your friends! I had pre made some pie crust (with a recipe using margarine) that was thawing to be used with this pie but taught her how to make it herself as well. We then went about peeling, coring and slicing the apples while the pie crust pre baked. I explained to her how simple it really is to make a pie. There’s no playing around with a leavening agent such as yeast, baking soda or baking powder. It was simply adding the apples to a mixture of flour, cinnamon, nutmeg and a bit of sugar! We rolled another round of dough over the overflowing pie shells and cut little score marks in it for ventilation and this was a much prettier end product than my unevenly cooked attempt at a lattice top! I took one of the pies to Tofino for the group to share and it got demolished, not by the drive up but by everyone eating it! It hardly lasted long enough to cool off after warming up in the oven. In fact, it was such a hit that I decided to make it Mooch’s April Feature. I had just been doing cupcakes at the time with Mooch and thought, “Why not introduce something new?” The cupcakes sales were doing well considering it was only 3 months into the New Year and 96 cupcakes had already been made! I posted Mooch’s first feature on the Facebook page on April Fools Day (making note that this pie was not a joke!) and within 24 hours I already had 2 orders. Making apple pie can be a tiresome event but the pies are easily freezable so that they can be baked to order! Any apple pie order I get now would be made on the spot since the last round sold out, I only make about 3 at a time when I have an order for one so you’re guaranteed it’s fresh- I guess you could say I’m “Poppin’ Fresh Pies“!

Apple Pie

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