So in the midst of post-exam delirium and idleness I have decided to cook/bake as many different things as I can until all my friends tire of trying my creations.
My friend saw this recipe for a salted caramel apple pie on a foodie website and we decided to give it a go, and here’s what we used:
- Short crust pastry x2 sheets/blocks, big enough to cover a loose-based fluted pie tin as well as make a cover for the pie (we used shop bought ones, don’t judge, it’s just so much easier)
- Egg x1, beaten (for brushing top of pastry with)
Pink lady apples x6 (as recommended by the original recipe, I think the point here is any crunchy apple will do, as this gives more texture than the traditional cooking apple)
2 tbsp flour
1/3 cup granulated sugar
2 tbsp unsalted butter
1 tsp salt
2/3 cup granulated sugar
2 tbsp water
2 tbsp syrup
1/2 cup heavy cream
And here’s how we did it:
- Preheat oven to 190C.
- Prepare a pie tin. I only cut a circle piece of grease proof paper for the base, the sides come off relatively easily.
- If you’re making your own pastry, make it well in advance and let it sit in the fridge for about 2 hours before doing this. If you’re using shop bought ready-rolled pastry, make sure you take it out of the fridge for at least 15 minutes before starting, or the pastry will crack and tear when you try to roll it out. As for pastry blocks, same as above but just soft enough to roll out!
- Line the pie tin with the first sheet of pastry, making sure that you press in the sides tightly so the baked pie will get the nice fluted pattern. Trim off excess pastry with a butter knife. Put this in the fridge for now.
- Peel, core and slice all the apples (honestly, this took a while, so I think it’s worth considering investing in an apple corer). Place them in a big bowl and add in the flour and sugar, and toss to mix lightly. Set aside.
- Now the exciting bit, the caramel. The original recipe actually made it in two parts, but having the usual disregard for important instructions in recipes, I dunked everything listed in a saucepan in one go. It’s worth mentioning I have this silicon spoon with an in-built thermometer from Lakeland, it is definitely worth getting if you don’t have a cooking thermometer that goes up to 250F. Anyway, the original salted caramel recipe is on www.tastespotting.com (search for salted caramel apple pie). All you have to do now is stir everything around to make sure there are no lumps and then leave it to get to 250F. I would advice turning it to a low heat as my caramel started to burn a bit at the bottom and we ended up having to sieve it before using. Once made, set in a bowl and let it cool for a bit.
- Finally it’s time to put everything together! With the second pastry sheet for the cover, make sure it’s big enough to cover the biggest area of the tin. Cut out any shapes you like (we did leaves), it’s more for ventilation purposes when the caramel boils in the oven. Take out the pie tin from the fridge, add in about one quarter of the apples (there may be liquid at the bottom of the bowl, try to avoid it), then drizzle over one quarter of the caramel. Repeat three more times until everything’s used up. Place the second pastry sheet on top, again trim off excess bits. Try to press the edges of the top and bottom pastry sheets together so it’s a nice tidy edge (unlike our slightly wonky one). Crimp the edges with a fork. Brush all over with an egg wash and pop it in the oven for 35 minutes until the top is nice and golden brown. Then cover loosely with foil to prevent burning pastry and cook in the oven for another 15 minutes. Please still be reading at this stage if you don’t want a sticky and burnt oven floor — put a sheet of aluminium foil on the oven shelf before putting the pie on it, the caramel tends to overflow when the pie is cooking.
I hope whoever reads this will give it a go, it’s absolutely delicious!