PIE: I see them displayed across July issues of magazines every summer. It’s the go-to, All-American dessert. And everyone has had the classics: Cherry, apple, strawberry or pecan. And don’t forget the blackberry or peach cobbler (who-ever first whipped up that oatmeal, sugary topping is a genious).
Although I have to say, I have never jumped on that pie-loving bandwagon, so I never make them and I have never made my own pie crust. But as I am live at home this summer, I have come to find out that my dad LOVES pie (and continues to remind me just about everytime a dessert is brought up)… So I think it’s about time I bake one up for him. And with Father’s Day being tomorrow, I think the timing is just about right.
And the pie winner is? Apricot.
APRICOT PIE: It’s probably a pie you have never tried before. Well, at least I haven’t. And when I searched around for a recipe, it was hard to find! You never see an apricot pie featured in magazines and I couldn’t find any recipes for one in my mom’s cookbooks. Then I went to my usual two websites: Food Network and Martha Stewart, but all I came across were apricot tarts and cobblers. No pie. So maybe I’m not the only one would doesn’t eat apricot pies!! My older sister Sarah said that when she was little we used to have apricot trees and my mom would always make apricot pies that were delicious. Well this Saturday morning, I wanted her to show me her pastry secrets!
My mom came across a few recipes for apricot pie online. And all called for fresh, apricots and a dash of nutmeg in the filling. So I have a feeling that nutmeg and apricot is a great combo.
THE PROJECT: To make a delicious apricot pie with a homemade, flaky pie crust (lattice top and all). A pie that would turn even the non-pie eaters (like myself) into pie lovers. And I have to say, I am making my way into the pie fan club.
The crust was simple! but required a soft hand in rolling because you don’t want to overwork the dough or the crust will be tough. And add a lot of flour to the counter so that there is no sticking. I used my mom’s home-made pastry recipe. It makes enough dough for a 10-inch two-crusted pie (the crust in on bottom and on top of the pie). We have a deeper set 9-inch pie plate so there would be plenty of dough. We then made the filling and then decorated the top of the pie latticed style. It was a lot harder than just covering the top with a rolled out dough, but it was worth it…it made it look like a true all-American pie. Perfect for a Sunday Afternoon. Almost picture perfect.
STANDARD PASTRY: 10 inch two-crust pie
(It’s my mom’s recipe that works for ANY kind of pie)!
- 2 2/3 cup flour
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 cup shortening
- 7-8 Tbsp. cold water
-Measure flour and salt into a bowl. Cut in the shortening thoroughly (I used a fork). Sprinkle in water, 1 tablespoon at a time, mixing until all of the flour is moistened and dough almost cleans side of bowl. (1-2 teaspoons of water can be added if it needed)
-Gather dough into a ball, gently, and divide dough in half. Shape into 2 flattened rounds. With floured rolling pin and surface, roll out dough gently until it is 2 inches larger than the pie pan. Place into bottem of pie pan. Cut off the excess dough around the edge. Fill with pie filling and top with second rolled-out pie crust. Don’t forget to make slits in the top of the crust so air can escape!
Well with the pie crust finished and put in the bottom of the dish. It was time to make the filling. It’s so simple! Just slice the fresh fruit, add a few ingredients and you are done!
FRESH APRICOT PIE
(The basis of this recipe was from Allrecipes.com. I added a bit of cinnamon to the mixture. We also created an egg wash to bush on top and sprinkled with sugar)
- 4 cups sliced fresh apricots
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
- pinch of ground nutmeg
- pinch of ground cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 1 pastry for double-crust pie
- Egg wash: 1 egg and 2 tablespoons cream
-In a bowl toss apricots, sugar, flour, nutmeg and cinnamon. Sprinkle with lemon juice and mix well. Place on pie plate on top of the bottom layer of pastry. Sprinkle a little more sugar on top of mixture.
-Place top pie crust over the pie. Make slits for the air to escape.
- I cut my second pie crust in strips and made a lattice top on my pie.
-Fold in the extra dough around the edges. I pinched in the edges with my fingers to make a waved edge look. Wet the edges of the strips with water as you press them down so it all sticks together.
-Whisk together egg and cream and brush on top of the pie and sprinkle with sugar. (You can also brush with milk and then sprinkle with sugar).
-Bake at 375 degrees for around 45 minutes. PLace a pie edge protector over the pie so the edges don’t brown too quick. Also, if the top begins to brown quickly, place foil over the top for a majority of the baking time.
After the work you put in to make it, I found that you can never go wrong with a home-made pie. Even better, one with a crumble topping…I’ll do that in my next pie project :)