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Calling for Apples

Our columnist shares family-favorite recipes. First ingredient: Jersey-grown apples.

by Lisa Ann Panzino DiNunzio

September is the perfect time for recipes calling for apples. You can find many delicious varieties at local farmstands. If you’re looking for something fun to do with your children visit a pick-your-own apple orchard or apple farm. There’s something extra exciting about recipes made with the apples your family picks. And remember organic or non-GMO is best.

Here are two of my favorite apple recipes of my mom’s that I’m sharing with you; I hope you enjoy them as much as I do.

I’m also sharing a picture of my mom and my niece Christina several years ago holding Mom’s Supreme Apple Pie.

Mom’s Supreme Apple Pie
6 cups apples, peeled, cored and sliced
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. almond extract
1/2 cup raw sugar or natural sugar substitute
Pinch of sea salt
3 tbsp. unbleached all-purpose flour
4–5 thin slices of butter
Pie crust (*recipe follows)

Preheat oven to 350°F. Place apples in a bowl, mix in cinnamon, almond extract, sugar and salt. Stir in flour. Set mixture aside.

Note: Several good apples to use are Granny Smith, Pink Lady, Golden Delicious and Fuji. Using a few different types of apples in this recipe makes for a really great pie.

Flaky Piecrust
2/3 cup plus 2 tbsp. butter, slightly softened
2 tbsp. pure maple syrup
1 tsp. sea salt
4 to 6 tbsp. very cold water
2 cups unbleached white flour
1 egg beaten with 1 tbsp. water, for egg wash

Raw sugar, to sprinkle on top of crust (optional)

Blend butter and maple syrup into the flour (don’t overmix), add in salt. Sprinkle in the water one tablespoon at a time, mixing until all flour is moistened and dough almost cleans the sides of the bowl. A little more water (one or two tablespoons) can be added if needed. Shape dough into a ball, divide dough in half then flatten each half into a disk, wrap in plastic wrap and chill for at least half hour in the refrigerator.

Then working with one disk of dough at a time, roll into a round circle on a lightly floured board using a floured rolling pin. Roll dough two inches larger than pie plate. Ease dough crust into a lightly greased pie pan, pressing gently against the bottom and sides. Add apple mixture into the bottom pie crust.

Place butter slices in different areas on top of the apple mixture. Place top crust over the apples and crimp edges together all the way around the pie. Make a few slits or use a small cookie cutter to make cutouts on the top crust to create a vent for the steam to escape. Brush top of pie crust lightly with egg wash and sprinkle a little raw sugar on top, if desired.

Cover edge of pie with piecrust shield or strips of aluminum foil to prevent burning.

Bake for 50-60 minutes or until apples are fork tender. Remove pie crust shield during the last 10-15 minutes of baking. Cool pie or serve warm with favorite ice cream or whipped cream sprinkled with cinnamon.

Crockpot Apple Butter
14-16 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and quartered
1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/2 cup apple cider
1 tbsp. ground cinnamon
1 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1/8 tspp. ground cloves

Mix all ingredients in a bowl, then put into a crockpot on low heat with the lid on for eight hours. Mash mixture and cook for two more hours keeping the lid off the crock pot. When apple butter is done allow to cool, then store in airtight containers in the refrigerator. Serve with biscuits, toast, muffins or scones.

Note: You can use other apples in place of the Granny Smith. n

Lisa Ann Panzino DiNunzio is author of Seasoned With Love, Treasured Recipes, Lisa Ann’s Seasoned With Love II, and children’s books Snicker Learns An Important Lesson and Readers’ Favorite 5-Star rated Little Twinkle Learns Her Purpose.

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