Super Apple Pie

  • Preparation Time60 mins
  • Cooking Time45 mins
  • Serves10
  • DifficultyEasy
170g unsalted butter, cut into 1 1/2 -cm pieces
60g vegetable fat, cut into 1-cm pieces
5 to 7 tbsp applejack
340g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
1 tsp table salt
1 tbsp caster sugar

For the filling

1.3 to 1.5kg apples, mixture of Granny Smith, Honeycrisp, Braeburn and Golden Delicious, about 6 large apples
100g sugar, divided
3 tbsp tapioca flour
2 tbsp apple jelly
1 tbsp apple cider
2 tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground grains of paradise
For the crust:

1) Place the butter, vegetable fat and applejack into the refrigerator for 1 hour.

2) In the bowl of a food processor, combine the flour, salt and sugar by pulsing 3 to 4 times. Add the butter and pulse 5 to 6 times until the texture resembles a coarse meal. Add the shortening and pulse another 3 to 4 times until incorporated.

3) Remove the lid of the food processor and sprinkle in 5 tablespoons of the applejack. Replace the lid and pulse 5 times. Add more applejack as needed, and pulse again until the mixture holds together when squeezed. Weigh the dough and divide in half. Shape each half into a disk, wrap in cling film and refrigerate for at least 1 hour and up to overnight.

For the filling:

1) Peel and core the apples. Slice into 1-cm thick wedges. Toss all of the apples with 50g of the sugar, place in a colander set over a large bowl and allow to drain for 1 1/2 hours.

2) Transfer the drained liquid to a small saucepan, place over medium heat and reduce to 2 tablespoons. Set aside to cool. Toss the apples with the remaining sugar, tapioca flour, jelly, cider, lime juice, salt and grains of paradise.

3) Preheat oven to 220C/Gas 7.

4) Remove one disk of dough from the refrigerator. Place the dough onto a lightly floured piece of greaseproof paper. Lightly sprinkle the top of the dough with flour and roll out into a 30cm circle. Place into a 23cm tart tin that is 5-cm deep. Gently press the dough into the sides of the pan, crimping and trimming the edges as necessary. Set a pie bird in the center of the bottom of the pan.

5) Place the apples into the unbaked pie shell in concentric circles starting around the edges, working towards the centre and forming a slight mound in the centre of the pie. Pour over any liquid that remains in the bowl.

6) Roll out the second pie dough as the first. Place this dough over the apples, pressing the pie bird through the top crust. Press together the edges of the dough around the rim of the pie. Brush the top crust with the reduced juice everywhere except around the edge of pie. Trim any excess dough.

7) Place the pie on a half sheet tray lined with greaseproof paper and bake on the floor** of the oven for 30 minutes. Transfer to the lower rack of the oven and continue to bake another 20 minutes or until the apples are cooked through but not mushy. Remove to a rack and cool a minimum of 4 hours or until almost room temperature.

**If you're using an electric oven with coils on the bottom of the oven, place the pie on the sheet pan on the lowest rack over the coils, NOT directly on top of them.

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