Cinnamon Apple Pie

Foodie Lit

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Apple Pie is such an American dessert. Apples, baked and sweet with a cinnamon aroma, create a fabulous dessert after any meal. Drizzle a bit of melted marmalade on top of this flaky extra fabulous pastry crust and everyone will hold a plate out for seconds.

 

Adding ground nuts and a bit of orange zest make this crust stand out. Try the crust recipe with any fruit pie. Suggestions at the bottom of the recipe give substitutions for dairy free, gluten free and cutting the sugar.

Apples are available for reasonable prices all year round. I usually select sweet apples for baking and leave the peel on. You can peel the apples, if desired.

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Two characters, one DNA, 300 years apart in Scotland, deal with tragedy and search for meaning and love in their lives. Author Sherry Ostroff reveals much about the two time periods and her characters in her historical romance, Caledonia. “Writing is like [being] taken away to another time. A few months ago, I met with a local book group. One of the questions that was posed to me at the end was, ‘Will humanity ever learn?’ My answer was no. We humans have short memories and are never mindful of the phrase - history repeats itself. I don't think Hanna and Anna (and other characters) dealt with tragedy any differently than we do.”

 

Anna and Hanna are bound by mysterious circumstances and we follow the well written and paced uncovering of family history and what links the centuries, families and women. 

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Cinnamon Apple Pie

 

Yield 2 crusts

 

Crust

2 cups flour

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons sugar

3/4 cups butter

1 teaspoon grated orange

1/3 cup ground walnuts, pecans or almonds

5 tablespoons very cold water

1 teaspoon finely ground breadcrumbs

 

  1. Combine flour, salt and sugar.

  2. Cut in shortening

  3. Add orange rind and nuts. Mix together.

  4. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon water over mixture. Add 1 tablespoon at a time until dough forms a ball. Chill, wrapped in plastic wrap, for 1 hour or overnight.

  5. Roll out dough on a parchment sheet big enough to fit a 9” pie pan. Fit into pie pan. Prick the bottom of the pastry dough with a fork. Sprinkle with breadcrumbs.

  6. Roll out the rest of the pastry dough to create a top crust if desired. Dough will keep in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Or bake in a pie tin with weights or beans in the crust, cool and freeze for future use.

 

Filling

1 cup sugar

2 teaspoons cinnamon, divided

1 tablespoon cornstarch

4 large apples or 5 cups, sliced evenly and thinly

2 tablespoons butter

1/4 cup marmalade, melted

1/2 cup confectioner’s sugar mixed with 1 teaspoon water, milk or cream, more liquid if needed for drizzle consistency.

 

  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Mix sugar, 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon and cornstarch together. Add apples and gently toss until the apples are covered with the mixture.

  2. Attractively arrange the apple slices over the pastry. The apples need to completely fill and pile high over the pie pan. If they don’t, slice another apple. I usually leave the peel on the apple, but you can remove it if you like. Fill the center with small pieces of the apple.

  3. Take little pieces of the butter and place over apples, distributing evenly.

  4. Bake in rack placed in the middle of the oven for 50 minutes or until the apples are tender when pricked with a fork. Remove from the oven. If edges begin to brown, cover with aluminum foil. 

  5. Let cool for 10 minutes. Drizzle marmalade with a spoon over the apples.

  6. Optional: You may also drizzle confectioner’s sugar on top of the apples and marmalade.

 

Expandthetable suggestions

Dairy free: Use non-dairy margarine in place of butter.

Gluten free: Use gluten free flour for pastry crust and gluten free breadcrumbs. Use potato starch in place of cornstarch.

Cut the sugar: Use a sugar substitute in place of sugar in the crust and filling, following substitution measurements on package. Use a sugar free marmalade and sugar free confectioner’s sugar for drizzle on top.

Peachy good! Use peaches in place of apples for a fabulous flavor.

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