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Friday, December 25, 2009

APAW 3 - Apple Pie

Same pie as APAW 1 but my crust was even better. I may have been too generous with the egg wash.

The 3 pounds of apples this time were:
1 lb. Stayman Winesap
1 lb. Pink Lady
1 lb. Honeycrisp
this ended up a little mealier - just a little, but more fragrant that APAW 1.

APAW 2 - Lemon Tart

I made the lemon tart from Alice Water's The Art of Simple Food last week. The curd is excellent. You can tell the crust recipe is meant to try and make it sound simple, but it didn't taste that great and had texture issues. But it was simple.

My changes were few:
1) Meyer Lemons instead of regular Eureka lemons (aka grocery store lemons)
2) 2/3 of the recipe's sugar

Monday, December 14, 2009

APAW 1 - Apple Pie

I made an apple pie yesterday. I rolled out my first pie crust in 4 years. And making crust is stressful. there are millions of recipes and like with most 'commodity' recipes, i look to Cooks' Illustrated. I won't print an apple pie recipe since those are also easily found.

They had a couple great tips:
  1. it's better to have a slightly tacky (or wet) dough since you can add flour
  2. use a tapered rolling pin with a clockwise rotation
  3. chill rolled out bottom crust while rolling out the top crust
Here are my great tips
  1. use about 3/4 the apples any recipe calls for - it's always too much
  2. use a lot of "table" flour to keep your dough from sticking
  3. replace water with apple juice concentrate (learned this from someone talking about Alton Brown)
  4. allow your pie to cool for 6 hours!
I chose the apples I like the best:
  1. 1 1/2 pounds Honeycrisp
  2. 1/2 pound Pink Lady
  3. 1/2 pound Mutsu

After eating a slice, my wife (also my harshest critic) found me cleaning the bathroom and said, "That is the best pie I've ever eaten. Any pie. Anywhere."

So far - APAW is a success. Next MEYER LEMON TART. Hopefully less stress.

APAW - Winter 2009/10 begins

APAW - A Pie A Week - begins.

the fourteen-week pie making journey mimics Evan Kleiman's "a pie a day." (see here).

the schedule will be something like:
  1. apple pie
  2. lemon tart
  3. sweet potato pie
  4. pecan pie
  5. pear and almond tart
  6. coconut cream pie
  7. cherry jam crostata
and then we'll fill out the rest...