Apple Picking

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I love fall. I love leaves. I love cold weather. I love bundling up in blankets by a fire. AND I love apple picking. So my friend dragged me (totally kicking and screaming… NOT!) to a farm in Lee. I’m sorry to say that he refused to get his face painted. We had enough time waiting for the wagon to bring us to the field, but for some reason that’s apparently not “manly” or “adult” to do.

Maybe next time.

So we picked apples. Lots of apples. And took enough pictures for two families visiting the farm worth. A nod to my grandma, we used film cameras for the majority of our pictures. I remember her lugging around her camera every summer until digital cameras took over the world.

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Look what I found: the world’s tiniest apple! Okay, not really, but it was adorable and delicious! Oh yeah, and surprise, my hair is a new reddish, brown, purple color. Did that on a whim the other day.

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So we ended up with a lot of apples. . . and a craving for apple pie. Which I must tell you, I’ve never made before without the assistance of my grandmother who used to make the best blueberry pies I’ve ever had. So in honor of her marvelous baking skills, we chopped up those apples, tossed them in cinnamon, nutmeg, and sugar and baked it in a pie crust. Might have taken a shortcut and went with a freezer section pie crust, but that was only because I wanted the pie in a hurry. No patience when I’ve been out in the field for hours.

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Gather:
5 large apples, peeled and sliced
3/4 cup of white sugar
2 tablespoons flour
3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 Pillsbury refrigerated pie crust, softened as directed on the box

Preheat oven to 425.

Lay one of the pieces of pie crust in the bottom of a 9-inch round pie pan. In a bowl, mix apples and other ingredients. Pour into pie pan. Top with other pie crust, cut off excess crust, and pinch edges together. Cut holes in top of pie crust.

Bake for 20 minutes with edges covered with aluminum foil. Remove foil and bake another 20 to 25 minutes.

Remove from oven and let cool for at least an hour and a half before serving.

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The Basic Pie Crust

I am notorious for taking short cuts. But with the holidays around the corner, perhaps it is time for me to learn how to really bake. (Shhh… my shortcuts are my best kept secret, but people should still think I can really bake.)

While it may not be perfect, that’s a sign it’s been homemade.

Ingredients:
2 1/2 cups of flour
a pinch of salt
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup shortening
cold water

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. (I often forget to do this first, and then wait a lengthy time for my gas stove to get ready.)

Place the flour and salt in a bowl, add the shortening and butter.

Oh, look. Almost done!

By hand (yes, you will get messy), mix in the shortening and butter until it looks like little pebbles. Then slowly add a tablespoon of cold water (one at a time), until while mixing you’ve got yourself a ball of dough.

If you want thick dough, keep as is, or be like me, mess up, and forget to do so. Place ball between two pieces of wax paper and roll out.

Rollin’, rollin’, rollin’. Keep that dough ball rollin’.

Place into the pie pan, pinching the edge of the crust to make an edge. Poke the bottom with a fork. For the first 10 minutes, bake with aluminum foil on top to keep it covered. I used a cookie sheet.

Whelp, it works in a jiffy, anyway…..

 

Bake uncovered for 15 more minutes (or if its thick, another 20). Test it to make sure it’s done. Let it cool before putting anything in it. I like to make a pudding pie for it. But that’s for another post. I survived the crust, isn’t that enough for right now?