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Autumn Leaf Apple-Cranberry Pie

Serves: Makes 1 (9- or 10-inch) pie

Ingredients:

  • 2 recipes Flaky Pie Dough (recipe attached)
  • 3¼ pounds (about 8 medium) crisp-tart apples such as Granny Smith, Gala, Honeycrisp or Fuji, peeled, cored and cut into ¼-inch thick slices
  • 10 ounces fresh cranberries (about 2½ cups), roughly chopped in a food processor
  • ½ cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar, plus more for dusting crust
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground allspice
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground cloves
  • ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • Good-quality vanilla ice cream, for serving


Procedures:

When choosing baking apples, look for firm, sturdy apples that will hold their shape in the oven. Otherwise you’ll end up with applesauce pie. Tart Granny Smiths are reliable and available in every market in the country, but try seeking out local varieties at the farmers’ market or roadside stands during apple season. Don’t be afraid to mix and match apples. A few tart and sturdy ones with a few sweet can be a great combination.

Preheat the oven to 375°F. Position a rack in the lower third of the oven and place a baking sheet on the rack.

To prepare filling: In a large bowl, gently toss apples and chopped cranberries with brown sugar, granulated sugar, lemon juice, spices, salt and cornstarch, until evenly coated. Transfer mixture to a large skillet or Dutch oven. Cook apples over medium-high heat until juices are very thick and apples are crisp-tender, about 7 minutes. Remove filling from heat, set aside to cool completely. (This filling can be made up to 2 days in advance and refrigerated.)

To prepare pie shell: Lightly flour a work surface. Place one recipe of pastry dough and dust a little flour on top. Roll out the dough into a 14-inch round about ⅛-inch thick. Loosely roll the dough around the rolling pin, center the pin over pie dish, and carefully unroll the round over the dish, easing it into the bottom and sides and allowing the excess to overhang the sides. Trim the dough so that it overhangs by 1-inch. Freeze for 15 minutes or refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Lightly flour work surface, place the remaining pastry dough in the center, and dust a little flour on top. Roll out the dough into a 14-inch round about ⅛-inch thick. Use decorative pastry cutters or mini cookie cutters to make 3 or 4 cuts around the center of the dough to form the vents, keep the pastry cutouts, set aside.

Fill chilled pie shell with the cooled filling. Loosely roll the dough around the rolling pin, center the pin over the pie dish, and carefully unroll the dough, to cover the top. Trim the top crust flush with the rim and decoratively crimp the edges. (Chill pie, while rolling out any remaining dough scraps to make additional decorative cutouts, optional.)

In a small bowl, beat the egg with the milk to create an egg wash and use a pastry brush to lightly glaze the surface of the pie. Arrange your decorative cutouts on the top of the pie crust and brush with egg wash. Lightly dust pie with granulated sugar. Bake pie for 60 minutes or until the crust is a lovely golden brown and the apples are bubbling. (Plan on an additional 20 minutes of baking time if the pie filling has been made ahead and refrigerated). Halfway through baking, cover crust with foil or pie crust shield. Transfer pie to a cooling rack and let cool for at least one hour. Serve warm or at room temperature with a scoop of ice cream.

Plan Your Baking Time: Don’t forget that pies have long bake times and often cook at different oven temperatures. Assemble and bake pies the night before, or early morning on Thanksgiving Day, before your oven is packed with the rest of your holiday dishes. This way, the pies have ample time to bake and cool before things really start to heat up in the kitchen.

Getting Ahead: You can make the pie crust 2 days ahead and keep it chilled and covered. You can prepare and cook the apple-cranberry filling up to 3 days in advance.

Storing: The pie will keep at room temperature under a cake dome for up to 2 days. For longer storage, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate. Reheat in a 375°F oven for 15 to 20 minutes to warm the filling and re-crisp the crust.

Recipe developed for Sur La Table’s Cooking Classes

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