Mile-High Apple Pie

After a full day of USGP cyclocross racing/spectating on Sunday (almost 12 hours worth), I came home and promptly decided to make an apple pie. I had purchased apples at the farmers’ market the previous weekend and was eager to put them to use. The recipe I used is from Martha Stewart’s latest cookbook—Martha’s American Food, “a celebration of our nation’s most treasured dishes, from coast to coast.” The book is divided into six sections (regions): Northeast, South, Midwest, Southwest, West, as well as an “All-American” section with recipes for dishes like blueberry pancakes and grilled cheese with tomato soup. It’s a nice compilation of 200 recipes that celebrate regional favorites. The apple pie is both beautiful and delicious—a great way to celebrate the start of the fall season.

Mile-High Apple Pie (from Martha’s American Food; makes one double-crust 9-inch pie)

1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
1 recipe Basic Pie Dough (Mile-High Pie variation)
5 1/2 pounds firm tart apples (about 16), such as Jonagold, Mutsu, or Granny Smith
Juice of 2 lemons
1 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
3 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1 large egg yolk
2 tablespoons water
Sanding or granulated sugar, for sprinkling
Vanilla ice cream for serving (optional…but not really)

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. On a lightly floured work surface, roll out smaller of the two large disks of pie dough (for the bottom crust) into a 12-inch round, about 1/8 inch thick, dusting surface with flour as needed to prevent sticking. Brush off excess flour. Fit dough into a deep-dish 9-inch pie plate. Trim to a 1/4-inch overhang; reserve trimmings. Cover with plastic wrap; refrigerate 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, roll out larger disk of dough (for the top crust) into a 14-inch round. Transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet; cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate 30 minutes.

Peel and core apples and cut into 1/3-inch-thick slices. Place in a large bowl; sprinkle with lemon juice to prevent discoloration. In a small bowl, combine flour, granulated sugar, and cinnamon; add to apple slices and top to coat.

Remove dough from refrigerator; place apple mixture in pie shell, mounding it into a tall pile. Dot filling with butter pieces. Whisk egg yolk with the water; using a pastry brush, lightly coat edge of dough with egg wash. Center and place other dough round over the apples; trim off edge of dough, if necessary. Tuck edge of top dough between bottom dough and rim of pan. Using your fingers, gently press both layers of dough along the edge to seal, and crimp as desired.

Using a paring knife, cut several steam vents in top of dough. Lightly brush surface with egg wash; sprinkle with sanding sugar. Place on a rimmed baking sheet and bake 10 minutes (crust will begin to turn golden).

Reduce oven to 350 degrees F, rotate pie, and continue baking until crust is golden brown and juices are bubbling, about 1 1/4 hours (tent with foil if crust is turning too dark). Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before serving, with ice cream if desired (yes…yes, you do).

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