Ahh, fall. Fabulous fruits and weather cool enough to bake! I love being able to make things that are a-tasty b-easy enough that I don't feel like I am sacrificing my weekend to them and c- capable of making my house smell amazing!
Two of my fall faves are apples and pomegranates. There are lots of apple pie recipes out there, but I wanted something ... more. So, I played around with this recipe for apple pie, and came up with pomegranate apple pie!
Step 1: Ingredients
You will need:
> 6 cups thinly sliced apples (for me this was 2 small and two large)
> 1/2 cup granulated sugar
> 1/4 cup flour
> 1/4 packed brown sugar
> 1/2 tsp cinnamon
> 1/4 tsp nutmeg
> dash or two of allspice
> dash of powdered ginger (not pictured)
> 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
> 1 pie crust
> topping (either pie crust or crumble)
> 1 tablespoon butter
> juice of one pomegranate (since I use fresh juice I never measure this ... 1/2 to 3/4 cup of store bought is probably plenty)
Need an easy from scratch pie crust? Check out my press-in pie crust 'ible.
Need an easy crumble topping? Check out my cinnamony crumble 'ible.
Need to know how to peel and juice a pomegranate? Gotcha covered there, too.
If you prefer a more traditional home made pie crust, this page looks helpful. I can't speak for accuracy or awesomeness of the recipes as I have not tried them, but it looks straightforward if you feel up to that sort of thing.
You will need a large-ish mixing bowl to combine your ingredients, and of course measuring spoons & cups and a sharp knife & cutting board.
You will be pre-heating your oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit, but not yet.
Step 2: Prepare Your Spices
In your mixing bowl, add the juice of your pomegranate, the granulated sugar, brown sugar, powdered ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and vanilla, Stir well, until the granulated sugar dissolves. The bottom of the bowl might still feel kind of gritty but you shouldn't see big chunks if you scrape your spoon from the bottom of the bowl up the side.
It is ok if your spices are a tiny bit clumpy still.
Step 3: Slice Your Apples
Now slice up your apples until you get 6 cups. I prefer my home made apple pie to have the skin still on the apples, but certainly slice them if you prefer. You want the slices on the thin side.
I find the easiest way to do this is to quarter the apple, and trim off the stem/opposite end leaving a flat area down the center of the quarter. Then, when I go to make the small slices, I can go straight down the flat part instead of trying to cut it at an angle.
It is probably best if you can keep your slices somewhat uniform in thickness, so that they are evenly cooked in the pie.
Step 4: Marinate the Apples
When your apples are all sliced, put them in the bowl with the pomegranate juice and spices. Be sure to stir this up well - the apple slices tend to stick together and you want all the surfaces to come in contact with the juice mix.
Once you have this stirred and resting, turn your oven on to preheat. You can go sit down for a minute while the oven heats up ;)
Step 5: Finish Prepping the Filling
Did you have a nice rest? Great!
Ok, this part is a little subjective on measurement. Take your bowl with the apples and juice over to your sink. Very carefully tip the bowl so that you pour off most of the juice. Try not to agitate it too much so you retain any spices/sugar that has settled while the apples were marinating. You want a little juice left to make adding in the flour easier, but not so much that you lose a lot of flour when you fill the crust.
Now add your flour in and mix it up. Ignore the spoon in the picture, it was not effective! Just reach in there with your (clean!) hands and mix it in. It is not difficult to mix but you want to be sure to get any clumps out ... a chunk of flour in the finished pie won't be pleasant.
As you can see in the third picture, once you get the flour in there is not a lot left that is liquid-y, and this is good.
Step 6: Fill the Crust
Now we will fill the crust. You don't want to get a lot of the excess liquid in with the apples, so that you don't have a soggy crust. So, still using your hands, scoop out the apples from the bowl and place them in the crust. Try to spread them evenly in the crust, all the way to the edges.
As you can see, there is still liquid in the bowl - you don't need that, just dump it.
Step 7: Top the Filling
If you are using a two crust method - sorry, I have no tips for you but yay I bet it'll be awesome!
If you are using a crumble, read on.
First, take your tablespoon of butter and break/slice it into very small pieces and place those on top of your filling.
Then, take your crumble and slather it on! I used the full amount of my crumble recipe I linked to in the ingredients page. You certainly could go lighter on the crumble if you wish.
Make sure your crumble is to the edges and roughly evenly spread.
Step 8: Cooking, Part One.
Loosely cover your pie in foil, and put it in the oven for 25 minutes.
Step 9: Cooking, Part Two
When the 25 minutes is up, remove the foil. Continue to cook for another 20-25 minutes.
The picture shows the pie when I removed the foil.
At the end of the 20 minutes, I felt the pie was not quite done, but so close I didn't want it on full heat any longer. So, I turned the oven off and cracked the door for the remaining 5 minutes, which seemed to give it the final bit of cooking it needed.
Step 10: Cool and Enjoy!
Remove your pie from the oven and let it cool. You can set it on a burner on your stove (if you have a gas stove with the burner guard things) or on a cooling rack if you have one so that it gets airflow on all sides.
If neither of those is an option, just be sure you set it on something that is able to handle the heat - a trivet or hot pad to protect the surface.
When it is cool - enjoy!