I know everyone has the flavor of pumpkin on their mind right now but let’s not forget about that age-old all-American dessert. Apple pie. You can’t go wrong on this one. We’ve upgraded the standard apple pie with the addition of custard that gives the filling just the right amount of richness and creaminess. And let’s not forget about that crumb topping. Of course, there’s some butter in there. But wait til you get a sampling. We’ve included bits of almond paste. Takes it to the next level. Especially with the glazed sliced apples artfully displayed as the crowning glory.
This is one of those times when I am more than willing to take a shortcut. Let’s be honest …an already prepared pie crust saves so much time. I used the Pillsbury refrigerated version. Here’s where you can do your own thing. You can also use the frozen variety, as long as it is deep-dish size. If you are gluten intolerant, use your favorite gluten-free product and switch out the small amount of flour in the recipe with gluten-free all-purpose flour.
Fit the prepared crust into your deep-dish pie plate. Be sure to bring the fluted edges flush with the edge of the plate. If there is a surplus of dough left hanging over the edge, it will surely burn during the baking process. Once ready, place the pie plate in the fridge while you prepare the streusel.
Be sure to use very cold butter so that you end up with small crumbs. If you have a pastry blender, use it now. Otherwise, you can cut through the mixture with two knives. If you end up with a few large pieces in the mix, just break them down with your hands. Place the bowl in the fridge until it’s time to top the pie with it.
The apples are peeled, cored and sliced. Leave the slices from the equivalent of two medium apples in a covered bowl off to the side …they will be used to finish off the pie topping. The rest of the slices are then briefly sautéed with sugar and cinnamon until just tender.
The sautéed apple slices are then placed in the prepared pie shell and topped with the buttermilk custard mixture. Very carefully place the dish in the preheated oven. The dish will be very full, almost overflowing.
After baking for the initial 30 minutes, the streusel topping and additional sliced apples are arranged on top. Bake at a lower temp for another 30 minutes, brush the apples with a warm apricot preserve glaze …then back in the oven to finish up.
Once this beauty is removed from the oven, it must have time to stand. It takes a full hour for the custard to set. It’s worth the wait.
apple custard pie
Inspired by Ann Taylor Pittman at Cooking Light
The perfect addition to your holiday dessert table.
- 1/2 (15-ounce) package refrigerated pie dough (such as Pillsbury)
- cooking spray
- 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2 1/2 tablespoons chilled butter, cut into small pieces
- 2 tablespoons almond paste, cut into small pieces
- 3 1/2 pounds peeled & sliced Granny Smith Apple, divided (set aside slices from 2 apples for topping the pie)
- 1 cup granulated sugar, divided
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 3 large eggs
- 1 3/4 cups low-fat buttermilk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup apricot jam, reserve for final glaze
Preheat oven to 325°F.
Roll dough into a 14-inch circle; fit into a 9-inch deep-dish pie plate coated with cooking spray. Fold dough under so it is flush with the outside edge of the pie plate; flute edges. Place pie plate in refrigerator until ready to use.
Lightly spoon 1/3 cup flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Combine 1/3 cup flour, brown sugar, and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon in a medium bowl; cut in butter and almond paste with a pastry blender or 2 knives until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Place streusel in the refrigerator.
Heat a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray over medium heat. Add the majority of the sliced apple (save some for topping), 1/4 cup granulated sugar, and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon; cook 10 minutes or until the apple is tender, stirring the mixture occasionally. Spoon the apple mixture into prepared crust.
Combine remaining 3/4 cup granulated sugar, 2 tablespoons flour, salt, and eggs, stirring with a whisk. Stir in buttermilk and vanilla. Pour over apple mixture. Bake at 325º for 30 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 300ºF. Do not remove the pie from the oven or, if you must, work very quickly. Sprinkle streusel evenly over pie and place the reserved apple slices on top, artfully arranged in concentric circles. Return to oven to bake at 300ºF for 30 minutes. Remove the pie from the oven.
Heat the apricot jam over medium-high heat until just bubbling. Brush a thin layer of the hot jam over the exposed apple slices. Return the pie to the oven for an additional 30 minutes or until set. Let stand 1 hour before serving.
If you are gluten intolerant, use your favorite gluten-free pie crust and switch out the small amount of flour in the recipe with gluten-free flour.