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whiskey apple pie = love

by on December 7, 2009

this recipe comes from a fantastic pie cookbook called, quite simply “pie pie pie” (by john phillip carroll, photos by tina rupp, see end of post for a link to where i bought the book). this cookbook is what kick-started my pie obsession.

i first made this pie during a football game – my housemates and i had finished up parking cars for those going to the game, and had been tailgating all afternoon. a friend and i decided that it was the perfect time to make whiskey apple pie. it came out delicious and juicy and amazing, which is impressive given that we’d, well, been tailgating. making it this time around, i realized that i did not add enough whiskey the first time. i love realizing things like “oh, there wasn’t enough whiskey” – because really, how often do you get to say that?

oh, right – this pie was going to be a team effort with the other male housemate but there is a football game on, and as i am pretty much the best housemate on the planet, i told him to watch the game and i’d rope him into making unhealthy food with me later.

first step is to make the pie crust. most pies i make start with the basic crust found in this cookbook. i love it. it is flaky and crunchy and just….beautiful. and it encourages you to get your hands dirty. one thing i have learned about baking, it is not for anyone who doesn’t like to get a bit grungy in the process. typing this post, i have flour in my hair and have been sprayed with a fine mist of golden delicious apple juice. win.

since i am making two crusts – one to put the filling in, one to blanket the filling – i am using (obviously) double the ingredients i’d use for a single pie crust. so, mix 3 cups all-purpose flour and one teaspoon salt together – use your hands, kids, it is so much more fun.

then, add in the crisco! or whatever vegetable shortening you want. add in one cup. (a comment from the peanut gallery while i was preparing for the baking fest: “who has that much crisco?” i do. be quiet or i won’t give you any pie). get your hands in there. do it. yes, it is slippery and kind of weirdly textured. break the shortening up, push it around the flour, blend it all together with your fingers until you have roughly evenly-sized bits. now, you’re going to add in 7 to 8 tablespoons of cold water. i bring the bowl to the counter by the sink and add water one tablespoon at a time, stirring with a fork. your goal here is to get the mixture to lump together into one mass. my first go tonight led to too-dry dough, so i put it back in the bowl and added a bit more water…making it a bit damper than i like. whoops.

see? that’s the mixture when it was a little drier than i wanted. but it is okay to have it a bit wet! my policy (possibly wrong) is that you do this first so it can sit in the pie pan and think about life and dry out a bit. it works, i promise. and dough that is too dry is a pain to roll out. that’s the next step.

pretend that you also see a picture of two evenly formed balls of dough. my computer/internet is being difficult and won’t upload that image. people in the living room can confirm that i am using seriously un-ladylike language in my effort to convince it to work. anyhow. take one of the balls of dough and flatten it (as seen above), then roll it out until it is roughly circular (i make horrible circles) and big enough that when you put it into the pie pan, it will have enough to hang over the edges. my incredibly accurate method for determining this? hold the pie pan in the middle of the dough, and guess. then, magic happens, readers. observe the nifty trick this cookbook taught me for getting the dough into the pie pan.

i love that move. it is baking brilliance. roll the dough onto the rolling pin, unroll it over the pie pan. so easy!

and that, ladies and gentlemen, is what i consider a beautiful pie crust. (for the crust that will go on the top of the pie, roll it out and use the rolling pin trick to get it on a piece of wax paper)

next we make the filling. you want 6 golden delicious apples (though i could have just used 5 and been fine, 6 proved to be a massive pie). oh, and preheat the oven to 425, please.

and yes, the glass of wine in the background is an integral part of baking a pie.

core, peel, and chop into 1/4-inch slices.set aside for later.

all of these ingredients go into the deliciouness that makes this pie so much more than an apple pie.

in a big (4-quart, ish) pot, whisk together 1/3 cup sugar, 2 tbs all-purpose flour, 1/2 tsp cinnamon, 1/3 tsp nutmeg, and 1/4 tsp salt.

add in 1/2 cup whiskey and 2 tbs lemon juice. stir it up, turn the heat on medium-high, and keep stirring. when it boils (and begins to thicken a little), add in the apples. all of them. i grabbed a wooden spoon and mixed until the apples were all coated in the whiskey mixture. stir for 3 or so minutes, then take it off the heat and let it sit for around 20 minutes. i used that time to clean up the mess i made.

pile the apples into the pie crust in a nice mound of apple/whiskey happiness.

if you’re not me, you’ll remember to cut up 2 tbs of butter and sprinkle that around the apples before you put the crust for the top of the pie onto the mound of apples. pinch the edges of that crust so that they are very friendly with the crust the filling sits in – like you’re sealing this baby up. now, put it in the oven at 425 for 25 minutes. at 25 minutes, it will look like this:

turn the temperature to 350, and bake for around 45 more minutes. do you see how it is on a cookie sheet? this is crucial unless you enjoy scraping burnt pie juices off the bottom of your oven.

then…after 45 minutes of agony…this happens:

oh. my. god.

verdict? well, i’ve had one person ask if i’ll marry into their family. so i take that as a compliment.


the baking goddess

link to the cookbook:


From → pie, recipes

  1. Molly permalink

    The best part of this post is most definitely the wine glass in the background. I know you.

  2. Greg Helm permalink

    This pie would be the key to my heart. Will you marry me? gh

  3. Ren permalink

    Umm… I’m coming over tonight and eating some! Yes, plz?

    • you aren’t allowed in the door if you don’t eat some of the food. i recommend heating it up and serving with the fresh whipped cream in the fridge.

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