Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Thanks and Giving Apple Pie

Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Today is a day of thanks and while I have so many things to be thankful for I am most grateful for the people who share this journey with me.

When I was a budding woman I became part of a family that I now rarely talk with and see even less. Geography and growing families lend themselves to distance but not a separation of the heart. My high school boyfriend and I moved on (truth be told, it is his family I speak of) but I never fully left the family. I have felt a part of their hearts as they are in mine. There was a special connection at a very important time in my life. They gave me more family than I had at home at the time. I am forever grateful for the unconditional love that I still feel, even as we live in separate states and carry on with a few exchanges each year.

I have several go-to recipes that I learned from Donna. The most popular and widely adored apple pie is among my favorites. You see, I am no baker. I love to cook and being in the kitchen is therapuetic and rewarding creatively. It nutures my soul. Baking, not so much. I'm not a fan of precision in the kitchen. It's too much pressure! I prefer to create something based on flavor or texture. The exactness of baking is too restrictive for my liking.

So having a go-to dessert that EVERYONE loves has served me well. I am thankful for Donna for gifting me that recipe. My brother asks for it every time he comes to my house (especially for his recent birthday). My friend, Nichole, has begged for the recipe for years. I admit I've been stingy with it. How can I let 'my' recipe go? Well, I've had a change of heart. In the spirit of giving, I must pass the love along.

May this pie warm the hearts around your table and create memorable moments time and time again.

Donna's Original Recipe:
5-7 Granny Smith Apples, peeled, cored and sliced
Unbaked pie shell*
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon

Topping:
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup flour
1/3 cup butter, room temperature


Layer the sliced apples with the sugar and cinnamon mixed together. (I may use a little more cinnamon. My ratios at this point are based on color more than measurements. I told you I don't like precise!). I layer until the apples are slightly higher than the crust.

In a medium size bowl mix together sugar, flour and butter for the topping. I use a fork to break the mixture up without overmixing. It should be crumbly consistency, not creamy. The only trick to this very easy pie is the temperature of the butter.

Once your topping is crumbly, add it to the apple layers and cover loosley with foil. Bake at 375 for 1 hour, or until the apples are soft. Remove the foil and cook for an additional 15 minutes at 400, or until lightly brown.

*I use Marie Calendar's deep dish pie crusts. At the risk of upsetting die hard foodies I am a mom of three who doesn't have *extra* time to roll out dough (I know Martha would shudder at this notion.). I also don't have a problem with Marie's crusts. They work well for me.) So, I take a little help where I can get it.

Amy's Recipe--Kicked up a notch:
Amy has adapted the topping portion of the recipe to be even sweeter. Try both and decide which you like best!

Topping:
1 cup sugar
3/4 cup flour
2/3 cup butter, room temperature

4 comments:

devans22 said...

You will always hold a special spot in my heart! You were my first girl! It has been a joy to watch you grow, find a soul mate and build your family. The glimpses we get are treasured and appreciated. A note about the recipe...it's from the Better Homes & Gardens 'The New Cookbook' circa 1965 and yes, I'm still using it. Warm love and many hugs, Donna

jora said...

I have HEARD about this recipe through the years, but I can't say I have ever been served it! It sounds sooooo delicious.

Nichole said...

I can't believe it!! I NOW HAVE "THE" RECIPE!!! :) How many years have I been beggin?! ;) ( I kinda feel like Plankton from SpongeBob with the Krabby Patty Recipe!) MMMuuuuaaahhhhh ha ha ha!!! ;)
THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!
HAPPY THANKSGIVING TO YOU TOO MY FRIEND! :)
You ROCK!

YoBaby said...

Thanks for being so "giving"! I will try it for sure. ;-)