Well, I did it. A Year of Pie has officially begun and I’m officially obsessed. I want to make pies all day, every day. Despite being a little nervous since it was my first attempt at pie baking, I found the whole process very soothing and cathartic. You know … like the scene from Bridesmaids when Kristin Wiig’s character makes the cupcake. Something like that.

As you can tell from the title of this post, I decided to start with a pretty traditional pie – apple.

Apple Pie with All-Butter Crust | Inspired by Charm #ayearofpie

Surprisingly, apple pie isn’t among my favorites. However, a warm slice with a giant scoop of vanilla ice cream is not something I would turn down.

Apple Pie with All-Butter Crust | Inspired by Charm #ayearofpie

Apple Pie with All-Butter Crust | Inspired by Charm #ayearofpie

I originally intended to make this a caramel apple pie. Basically, that would involve topping the apples with caramel sauce before adding the top crust. However, I got so excited when placing on the top crust that I completely forgot about the caramel. These things happen.

Apple Pie with All-Butter Crust | Inspired by Charm #ayearofpie

Apple Pie with All-Butter Crust | Inspired by Charm #ayearofpie

While my mom has a fabulous pie crust recipe, I have decided to try a few others before tackling the family favorite. To make this pie I ended up two different recipes. For the crust, I used the All-Butter Crust recipe from The Four and Twenty Blackbirds Pie Book. For the pie filling, I used the recipe from Honeysuckle Catering. She recently did two YouTube videos with Margo True of Sunset Magazine showiing how to make pie dough and apple pie. After watching both of those videos, I was a little more confident about tackling this recipe. Be sure to check them out.

Apple Pie with All-Butter Crust | Inspired by Charm #ayearofpie

Throughout this year I plan to experiment with different pie dough recipes until I find the one I like best. However, I do realize that pie dough is kind of a personal thing and people have their favorites. Be it thin, thick, flaky, buttery, etc. – I recommend testing different recipes to find your own preferred variety. Kind of like what I’m doing.

Apple Pie with All-Butter Crust | Inspired by Charm #ayearofpie

And, since I am documenting this for my own reference, I will leave a few notes at the end of the post detailing my thoughts about flavors, etc. So if you are curious about my personal taste notes, you can find those there.

Apple Pie with All-Butter Crust | Inspired by Charm #ayearofpie

Apple Pie with All-Butter Crust

Here’s what you will need:

All-Butter Crust

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 pound (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 cup cold water
1/4 cup cider vinegar
1 cup ice

Apple Filling

3 1/2 pounds apples (6 large or 7 medium), peeled and sliced (1/8th inch thick) I used a mix of Granny Smith and Honey Crisp
3/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons of flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into thin slices
1/4 cup milk and sanding sugar for garnish

Let’s get baking:

In a large bowl, sift together the flour, salt, and sugar. Then add the cold butter pieces. Use a spatula to coat the butter with the flour mixture. With a pastry blender, cut the butter into the flour mixture until the butter is in pea-sized pieces. Be careful not to over mix.

Then in a small bowl combine the water, ice, and cider vinegar. Sprinkle about 4 tablespoons of the ice water mixture over the flour and butter mixture and incorporate with a spatula. Continue to add more of the ice water mixture, 1 to 2 tablespoons at a time, using the spatula and / or your hand until the dough comes together into a ball. If necessary, add small drops of the water mixture to any remaining dry bits.

Split the dough in half and shape each piece into a flat disk. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour. (This dough can be refrigerated for 3 days or frozen for 1 month.)

Next, we want to make our apple filling.

Place your peeled and sliced apples in a large bowl. In a medium-sized bow whisk together sugar, flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and salt. Sprinkle this mixture over the apples and mix with your hands or a large spoon to combine. Add the lemon juice and mix again.

Remove your chilled dough from the fridge. Roll out the dough on a lightly floured work surface. (To make this process a bit easier, I rolled mine out between two sheets of waxed paper.) Roll out the dough to 1/8 inch thickness. The dough should be two inches wider in circumference than the size of your pie pan. Use the wax paper or your hands to transfer the dough to your pie pan. Trim the dough leaving about 1/2 inch overhang. Chill the bottom crust while you roll out the top.

Now, preheat your oven to 450 degrees F. Position your two oven racks on the two lowest levels. On the bottom rack, place a cooke sheet to catch any drips from your pie.

Next, pour your prepared apples into the pie shell. Then, scatter the thinly sliced butter on the top. Next, add the top crust to your pie. I decided to try a lattice top. Instead of explaining how to do that here, check out this awesome tutorial via YouTube.

For a standard top crust, carefully center it on your filled pie. Fold the edge of your top crust over the edge of the bottom crust so it’s flush with the pan. Crimp the edge to seal with your fingers or a fork.

Slash a few decorative steam vents in the top crust. Brush the top crust with milk and sprinkle with sanding sugar.

Set the pie onto the second to lowest rack in your oven. Bake at 450 degrees F for 20 minutes, then reduce the heat to 350 degrees F. Bake until the pie is a medium golden brown. You can test the doneness of your apples by sticking a knife into a vent hold. They should feel tender. Let the pie cool at least an hour before serving.

And that my friends is one awesomely delicious pie.

Apple Pie with All-Butter Crust | Inspired by Charm #ayearofpie

Served with a heaping scoop of vanilla bean ice cream, this really is perfection.

I’ve never knowingly had a crust with cider vinegar in it. It does add a really unique and tangy flavor. I liked it! However, I will cut back a bit on the amount next time I make this crust. Maybe 1/6th of a cup instead of 1/4th. With that being said though, this dough is bananas! (Bananas = super good). It’s flaky, flavorful, thick, and all around wonderful. I could have just eaten the dough with the ice cream.

Apple Pie with All-Butter Crust | Inspired by Charm #ayearofpie

My apples were still a little crisp, so I assume I didn’t cut them quite thin enough or didn’t bake it long enough. It wasn’t enough to bother me, but something I’ll keep in mind next time. My mom also suggested a different apple. She prefers Cortland.

Apple Pie with All-Butter Crust | Inspired by Charm #ayearofpie

My pie also had a fair amount of liquid. I did cut into it a little bitter sooner than I should have. (I was in a bit of a hurry as the sun was setting and I needed to photograph this bad boy. (You may be surprised to learn that I took most of the cut pie pictures in an almost completely dark kitchen. The magic of a good camera and a tripod!) As the pie continued to set, I noticed things thickened up. So, a lesson to you – patience is a virtue. Also, the Four & Twenty Blackbirds Pie Book talked a little bit about using apples in pies. Apparently, there is a way to release some the the liquid in the apples before baking. I may also give that a try next time around.

With all that being said though, the flavors of the pie were still wonderfully delicious and enjoyable. I’m calling this pie a winner!

Apple Pie with All-Butter Crust | Inspired by Charm #ayearofpie

For not being a big Apple Pie fan, I was really pleased with my first attempt at pie. Not only did it turn out beautifully, but it tasted equally delicious.

One down, many more to go! What type of pie would you like to see me tackle next?

Apple Pie with All-Butter Crust

By Michael Wurm, Jr. Published: January 14, 2014

    Well, I did it. A Year of Pie has officially begun and I'm officially obsessed. I want to make pies all day, every day. Despite being …

    Ingredients

    Instructions

    1. In a large bowl, sift together the flour, salt, and sugar. Then add the cold butter pieces. Use a spatula to coat the butter with the flour mixture. With a pastry blender, cut the butter into the flour mixture until the butter is in pea-sized pieces. Be careful not to over mix.
    2. Then in a small bowl combine the water, ice, and cider vinegar. Sprinkle about 4 tablespoons of the ice water mixture over the flour and butter mixture and incorporate with a spatula. Continue to add more of the ice water mixture, 1 to 2 tablespoons at a time, using the spatula and / or your hand until the dough comes together into a ball. If necessary, add small drops of the water mixture to any remaining dry bits.
    3. Split the dough in half and shape each piece into a flat disk. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour. (This dough can be refrigerated for 3 days orfrozen for 1 month.) Next, we want to make our apple filling.
    4. Place your peeled and sliced apples in a large bowl. In a medium-sized bow whisk together sugar, flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and salt. Sprinkle this mixture over the apples and mix with your hands or a large spoon to combine. Add the lemon juice and mix again.
    5. Remove your chilled dough from the fridge. Roll out the dough on a lightly floured work surface. (To make this process a bit easier, I rolled mine out between two sheets of waxed paper.) Roll out the dough to 1/8 inch thickness. The dough should be two inches wider in circumference than the size of your pie pan. Use the wax paper or your hands to transfer the dough to your pie pan. Trim the dough leaving about 1/2 inch overhang. Chill the bottom crust while you roll out the top.
    6. Now, preheat your oven to 450 degrees F. Position your two oven racks on the two lowest levels. On the bottom rack, place a cooke sheet to catch any drips from your pie.
    7. Next, pour your prepared apples into the pie shell. Then, scatter the thinly sliced butter on the top. Next, add the top crust to your pie. I decided to try a lattice top. Instead of explaining how to do that here, this recipe will detail a traditional crust.
    8. For a standard top crust, carefully center it on your filled pie. Fold the edge of your top crust over the edge of the bottom crust so it's flush with the pan. Crimp the edge to seal with your fingers or a fork.
    9. Slash a few decorative steam vents in the top crust. Brush the top crust with milk and sprinkle with sanding sugar.
    10. Set the pie onto the second to lowest rack in your oven. Bake at 450 degrees F for 20 minutes, then reduce the heat to 350 degrees F. Bake until the pie is a medium golden brown. You can test the doneness of your apples by sticking a knife into a vent hold. They should feel tender. Let the pie cool at least an hour before serving.
      Inspired By Charm Paint Colors
      Comments

      • Karin at

        Fabulous looking pie and photos! I love the weave! I’ve always wanted to try that. I think it makes the pie look a little more interesting. Your photos are awesome by the way! Do you mind me asking what lens and setting you used, if you remember lol. 🙂 I also have a dark kitchen and am struggling with the settings. I am sure a tripod is very helpful.

        • Michael Wurm, Jr. at

          Thanks so much Karen. I’ll do the best I can to help. I have a Canon EOS 70D with a Macro Lens EF 100mm 1:2:8. I mostly keep my ISO at about 400. The aperture and shutter speed is what I change the most. A tripod is essential.

          Hope that helps!

          xo Michael

          • Karin at

            Thanks for the info, Michael! Cheers!

      • caroline [the diy nurse] at

        I love this. Especially the Bridesmaid reference. I think I shall do a year of cheesecake. My waistline wouldn’t mind I’m sure

        • Michael Wurm, Jr. at

          Cheesecake!? Yes please!

          xo Michael

      • Terri at

        That pie is beautiful! I am glad you jumped right in and played around with the crust. It took me forever to get decorative with pie crust. Again, fantastic job!

        • Michael Wurm, Jr. at

          Thanks a million Terri! I’m excited to try another. This was a different kind of crust them I’m used to. I loved it, but it didn’t sit well with the family. Haha.

          xo Michael

      • Elle at

        You are off to a great start on this series. Your pie looks scrumptious! And like you, I’m not a big fan of apple:)

        • Michael Wurm, Jr. at

          Thank you so much! I hope the next one turns out as well.

          xo Michael

      • terry at

        I am so very impressed with your first effort. You look like a pro . . . your pie is gorgeous! I grew up in So. Cal. We went to the beach often and on the way home on a very good day we would pick up one of Vi’s Pie’s in Costa Mesa – a Chess Pie with Raisins. Love to see you give that a try!

        • Michael Wurm, Jr. at

          A Chess Pie with Raisins? I can’t say I ever heard of that before. I’ll have to do a little research and check it out. Thanks for the suggestion.

          xo Michael

      • sharon at

        i think you lie….i think you have made pies forever! hahahah, this looks so perfect, well done michael! can’t wait to see your pies all year long!

        • Michael Wurm, Jr. at

          Hahaha. Thanks so much Sharon. Maybe my Year of Yeast gave me a little practice with dough?

          Thanks so much!

          xo Michael

      • girlfromwva at

        That is a GREAT first pie!!!! I am going to have to try the recipe you have on here for the crust…that is where i have all my problems!!! I love pumpkin pie & pecan pie!!!

        • Michael Wurm, Jr. at

          It seemed to work at well for me. I hope you have luck with it too!

          xo Michael

      • Joe at

        For your first pie, I’d consider the results pretty darn impressive! My mom taught me how to make pies a couple years ago. There’s definitely an art to it, since the amount of water can vary depending on the humidity (and whether I measure the flour accurately!) I use the Better Homes & Gardens crust: 2 cups flour, 2/3 cup Crisco, 1/2 tsp salt, and 6-7 T. of water. Friends came over for dinner last Saturday and I gave them a quick demonstration as I made a lattice crust rhubarb pie. These are mini apple pies, but check out the fun added touch on top. http://instagram.com/p/cim1BUkX5R, 🙂

        • Michael Wurm, Jr. at

          Wow! You’re pies are fantastic. You’ll have to share you colored apple secret. Food coloring?

          I’ll have to give that recipe a try as well. That sounds like the crust my mom makes. Just Crisco and flour. That’s next on my list to try.

          Thanks Joe!

          xo Michael

          • Joe at

            Yep, you’ve got it! I bought a set of Crayola watercolor brushes just for the kitchen. I paint it on the dough before baking.
            Joe

            • Michael Wurm, Jr. at

              Alright Joe, I’ll have to give this a try next time! Thanks again for the tip.

              xo Michael

      • Susan McMenamin at

        Winner, winner, let’s have pie for dinner!! Your details about the recipe gave me inspiration to try making a pie from scratch. Wish me luck!
        How about trying banana creme pie??? You know you want to…

        • Michael Wurm, Jr. at

          Pie for dinner!? I’m in!

          Ya know what? I can’t say I’ve ever had Banana Creme! Looks like we’ll have to change that. Good luck with your pie!

          xo Michael

      • Jamie @ Anderson & Grant at

        The pie looks delicious and the crust looks perfect. I’m very OCD when I make crust. I have a recipe for crust that has just one teaspoon of vinegar, but also includes sour cream. It is very tasty, but has a tendency to shrink when it bakes which ruins the hard work I put into the crust! I think it might have too much butter… I may need to give this recipe a try! Can’t wait to see what other pies you’ll make this year!

        • Michael Wurm, Jr. at

          Wow! Sour cream in a crust. I never heard of that. Sounds very interesting though. Although the shrinking isn’t good.

          Yes – give it a try. See if you like it. Besides, it gives you an excuse to eat pie, right?

          xo Michael

      • Júlia Queiroz at

        Delicia!
        I loved apple pie, thanks for share!

        • Michael Wurm, Jr. at

          Yay! You’re welcome!

          xo Michael

      • shar at

        What an absolutely gorgeous pie; well done, Michael! And beautiful pictures, as usual.

        • Michael Wurm, Jr. at

          Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

          xo Michael

      • Jamie | Jamie's Recipes at

        What a gorgeous lattice crust! I really need to work my weaving skills. I have been craving apple pie all week –I didn’t get enough pie over the holidays. This looks perfect.

        • Michael Wurm, Jr. at

          Check out the video above, it makes the weaving process so simple. Good luck!

          xo Michael

      • joy at

        This looks great. I usually use a super easy crumb crust for fruit pie because it’s quick. I would love to make one that looked beautiful like this one! My secret for apple pie is adding a pinch of ginger to the apples, it gives them an awesome fresh flavor.

        • Michael Wurm, Jr. at

          Ooo! Love that tip!

          Yes – I’m hoping to try a few crumb crust recipes as well. They are just as delicious!

          xo Michael

      • KayleneP @ The Links Site at

        Just found your blog on google plus and I love it!
        This pie definitely looks like a pie winner, and I love that you forgot to add the caramel sauce – that’s something that I would do too! 😉

        • Michael Wurm, Jr. at

          Haha. Thankfully it still tasted delicious. So glad you found me. Thanks Kaylene!

          xo Michael

      • Tara at

        Oh my goodness what a lovely recipe! And posting detailed pictures is incredibly helpful! I can’t wait to bake this for my fiance!

      • lisa at

        What a beautiful pie! Even though it’s only 9:30 in the morning, a piece of that pie sound fabulous right now! Thanks for sharing.

        • Michael Wurm, Jr. at

          Pie for breakfast is a regular occurrence in my house. Haha.

          xo Michael

      • Dzung at

        Hi Michael! Your pie looks beautiful! i love the lattice. I can’t believe it’s your first try at making pie. You’re a pro!! Thank you so much for the video shout out! Glad it was helpful. 🙂

      • Diane at

        How about a handheld warm meat pie? It seems it would be especially nice to hold a nice warm pie in your hands in this cold weather

      • Cat at

        First, your pie looks heavenly. I only have the one question…Would you tell me the purpose of the vinegar in your shell? Thank you, Cat

        • Michael Wurm, Jr. at

          Thanks Cat! I’m honestly not sure. Haha. I assumed there is some science behind it. Plus it add a different flavor to the crust.

          Hope that helps!

          xo Michael

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