May 13 is National Apple Pie Day. I have never really mastered the art of traditional pie crust. Instead, when I get a craving, I turn to apple cobblers and apple crisps. One of the reasons I like these dishes over apple pie is the ease of preparation. Cobblers and crisps can be whipped up in no time while pies take a little longer. And pie crusts can be temperamental. If you don’t treat them right they end up tough and dense. Here are two of my very favorite recipes. The first is for Apple Cobbler. It’s a variation on a recipe from William’s Sonoma from years ago. The second is a recipe for my brother Bill’s Apple Crisp. It’s simply delicious! Enjoy!
½ cup sugar
1 ½ Tbsp. all-purpose flour
1/4 cup unsalted butter
3 lb. Golden Delicious apples, peeled, cored and thinly sliced
2 Tbsp. Fresh lemon juice
1 tsp. Vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar
2 tsp. Baking powder
1/4 tsp. Salt
2 Tbsp. Unsalted butter, chilled and cut into small cubes
1/3 cup crystalized ginger, chopped
zest from one orange
1 cup heavy cream, plus cream for brushing
For filling: Combine sugar and flour. In large saute pan, melt butter. Stir in apples, lemon juice and sugar mixture. Cover partially and cook until tender, 20 minutes. Stir in vanilla, let cool, then transfer to buttered 1-1/2 qt. pie dish.
For crust: Mix flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in bowl. Using pastry blender or fingertips, cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in ginger. Combine cream and orange zest. Stir cream-zest mixture into flour mixture, just until it holds together. Gather into ball and with floured hands on floured work surface, knead briefly until soft, then roll out a little larger than the pie dish. Transfer to dish, trim off excess. Cut small hole in center for steam to escape. If you wish, cut out leftover pastry into fancy shapes and decorate the crust; brush cream underneath the pieces to make them stick.
Bake at 425° for 10 minutes. Reduce heat to 375° and bake until golden, 20 – 25 minutes longer.
Cool on a wire rack. Serve warm. Serves 6 to 8.
6 apples, peeled and roughly chopped
1 ½ tsp. Cinnamon
1 cup flour
1 stick butter (½ cup)
1 cup brown sugar
Put apples into greased baking dish.
With a fork, work together the flour, butter cinnamon, and sugar until crumbly. Sprinkle mixture over apples.
Bake at 350° for 40 minutes.
Serve with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream. Yummy!
(Image via Pinterest)