This recipe came to me from my mother-in-law Betty. It was her mother’s recipe and now it is the only apple pie recipe served at our extended family holiday get-togethers. Doesn’t matter whether it’s Auntie Evelyn, my daughter Paula or me making the pies, grandma Freund’s apple pie has got to be one of the offerings. And there is a very good reason for that. French apple pie is fabulous. And it’s easy. Working with just one crust is always easier than trying to fit a top crust over the filling, crimping the edges so they look beautiful, and actually getting the whole thing in and out of the oven without incident.
So next time you want to bake an apple pie, give this recipe a try. The crunchy topping reminiscent of crumbled shortbread makes just a lovely contrast to the tender apple slices. I know you and your family and friends will become devoted fans at first bite. I know that’s all it took for me!
- ½ to 2/3 c. sugar (depends on the tartness of your apples)
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- 2 T. + 1 c. flour
- 6-8 apples, peeled and thinly sliced
- pie crust for 9-inch one crust pie
- ½ c. butter, room temperature
- ½ c. packed brown sugar
In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the sugar, cinnamon, and 2 tablespoons flour. Add apple slices and combine thoroughly. Pour into a pastry lined pie pan. It should look like there are way too many apples. That’s exactly what you want. See picture below.
Cream butter and sugar together; add the remaining 1 cup flour. Crumble over apples. Cover edges of pie crust with 1 ½-inch strips of aluminum foil to prevent excessive browning. Remove foil last 5 minutes of baking.
Bake in a pre-heated 375 degree oven for 60 minutes or until top is nicely browned and the apples are tender. Serve slightly warm with a side of vanilla ice cream or for an extra special treat, topped with Bourbon Caramel Whipped Cream. (Recipe under This & That)
BONUS RECIPE – PIE CRUST (my secret recipe)
- ¼ c. very cold water
- 2 c. flour
- 1 tsp. salt
- heaping 2/3 c. Crisco
Step 1 – Pour cold water into a small bowl. Step 2 – Measure flour and salt into a mixing bowl. Step 3 – Take 1/3 cup of the flour back out of the mixing bowl and stir it into the water. Make a paste. Set aside. Step 4 – Add the Crisco (heaping 2/3 cup) to the flour and salt mixture. Mix together. (I use my KitchenAid mixer.) Step 5 – Add the water/flour paste to the flour/shortening bowl and mix just until blended. Do not over-mix. Roll out dough and place in pie plate. This recipe makes enough dough for a double crust pie if using a regular sized pie plate, or one large bottom or top crust with a little left over for pastry cookies* or a small tart like the one shown below.
*To make pie crust cookies, roll out the left over dough, cut into whatever size or shape you like, place on a cookie sheet, and sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon. Bake along with your pie, but not for as long. Check after 20 minutes. The “cookies” should be nicely browned on the bottom when they are done. Note: pastry cookies need not be shared with anyone else. They are meant to be eaten only by the baker!