Apple Pi Cocktail

Introduction: Apple Pi Cocktail

Want to celebrate March 14th in style this year? Get your friends together and sip on an Apple Pi Day Cocktail!

As I get older my celebrations often involve cocktails over desserts and I wanted to make something that anyone could do with the regular equipment found in their kitchen; no specialized tools, cutters or pans needed here!

Don't be intimidated by the Pi Symbol cut into the apple slice. I will break it down into simple instructions, cut by cut so that anyone, even those with absolutely no artistic skill can make them! 

Ingredients (directions follow in the next steps):
1 medium-sized apple, any variety
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
4 cups apple juice
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla extract
4oz Bourbon or Rum

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Step 1: Drying Apples for the Pi Garnish

This step can be done days in advance, actually, weeks in advance. Just remember to make sure they are completely dry and store them in an airtight container if you do make them ahead of time.

1 medium-sized apple, any variety
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

Remove the stem but DO NOT core or peel the apple. Use a mandolin slicer on a thin setting, or a very sharp knife to cut the apple into thin slices. Start cutting slices from the top of the apple (stem side) down in order to get the best slices; the sweet spot is the section after you pass the shoulders of the apple but before the seeds start. 

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees. Place the slices in a single layer on a baking pan, sprinkle lightly with cinnamon and then bake for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes the apples will be somewhat dry and lightly sticking to the pan; carefully peel them off the pan to loosen them up (if you don't do this they will be very stuck to the pan after one hour) and then return the pan to the oven for another 30 minutes. 

Step 2: Cutting Out the Pi

The Pi symbols in the apples are actually really easy to cut and don't require much artistic skill at all! Follow my simple directions in the next step to make awesome-looking apple pi garnishes!

The best results will come from using an x-acto knife, box cutter or other similar blade to cut the Pi shape out of the apple. 

Step 3: How to Cut Out the Pi

Now is a good time to practice on one of the not-as-perfect apple slices before you cut into the four best ones!

1. Start just slightly right of center and cut out a horizontal rectangle. 
2. At the left end of the rectangle cut a little downward tail.
3. Cut a vertical rectangle for the left leg. 
4. Cut another vertical rectangle for the right leg. 
5. Cut an upward tail on the bottom of the right leg. 

Repeat with three more apple slices (you will need four good ones).

That's it! It's easy, well...Pi?

Step 4: Making the Apple Pi Cocktail

4 cups apple juice
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla extract
4oz Bourbon

In a medium saucepan combine the apple juice, brown sugar and cinnamon. Heat over low, stirring constantly until all of the sugar is dissolved and the mixture is wonderfully warm. Turn off the heat and add in the vanilla and Bourbon.

Step 5: Assemble the Cocktail & Serve

To serve, divide the mixture among four cocktail or wine glasses.

Cut a slit up the left side of the apple garnish and slip it over the side of the glass.

Add a cinnamon stick and serve!

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