Apple pie is baking in my oven right now, along with two tiny ramekin pies for Rick and me. (The big pie's for a dinner party tomorrow.) The house is really hot, but it's worth it. It smells amazing. I just hope it tastes as wonderful.
I haven't made a pie in a long time. My mom has a rad crust recipe called "never fail pie crust." And it's true--the secret ingredient is a little vinegar, which makes the crust flakier. But this time around, I used Martha Stewart's pate brisee. It turned out really soft, and I was afraid it would be sticky and not roll out nicely. I was wrong, because even though I didn't chill it (oops), it rolled out pretty easily and it was a snap to roll onto the pin to transfer it into the dish. Even so, I'm out of practice, so my crusts are a little messy. We'll call it a rustic look, okay?
As usual, I didn't follow a recipe for the filling, because I'm contrary that way. My preference is for tart apples, so I used granny smiths. Then I just mixed the apple slices with some lemon juice, sugar (many recipes call for a cup, but I use about half that) cinnamon, and a splash of liquor (usually bourbon, but this time vanilla vodka). Then I melted butter in a skillet and cooked up the filling until it was golden brown and the alcohol burned mostly off. That whole shebang went into the crust, and I topped it with the other crust, brushed it with egg yolk & water glaze, sprinkled with a tiny bit more sugar, and cut a couple of vents. Bake at 400 for about 15 minutes or until the crust is golden, then turn down to 350 for another 45-50 minutes or so. Voila!
P.S. This pie would be perfect served with a slice of sharp cheddar and a glass of reisling. But that's just me. I suspect my friends will want it heated with vanilla ice cream.