Apple pie

I'm sure homemade apple pie must be high on most people's list of favourite comfort foods. Here we use a mix of cooking and eating apples, for extra texture and taste.

Serves 6-8, 30 mins preparation, 1 hour cooking, 1 hour 30 mins chilling

Ingredients for the pastry

  • 230g plain flour
  • 150g chilled unsalted butter, diced
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 75g caster sugar
  • 1 medium egg and 1 medium egg yolk, beaten together

20cm loose-bottomed flan tin, 5cm deep

Ingredients for the filling

  • 25g unsalted butter
  • 5 Bramley cooking apples, peeled, cored and thinly sliced
  • 150g caster sugar, plus extra for dusting
  • 3 eating apples, peeled, cored and thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons milk

To serve

  • Double cream, vanilla ice cream or, if you're in Yorkshire, Wensleydale cheese

Method for the pastry

  1. Place the flour and butter in a large bowl, and gently work them together until the mix resembles breadcrumbs.
  2. Stir in the lemon zest and sugar, then slowly mix in the eggs to form a dough.
  3. Shape the dough into a ball, wrap it in cling film and keep in the fridge for 1 hour.
  4. On a floured surface, roll out two thirds of the pastry until it's 5mm thick. Then use it to line the flan tin, very carefully, letting the pastry hang over the sides.
  5. Put the tin on a baking tray and keep it in the fridge for another 30 minutes.
  6. Place the remaining pastry between two floured sheets of baking parchment and roll this to form the pie lid. Put this in the fridge for 30 minutes too.

Method for the filling

  1. Melt the butter in a large, heavy pan over a medium heat. Add the cooking apples and sugar, then cover with a lid and cook gently for 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  2. Mix the eating apples in with the cooked apples, then spread them onto a large tray to cool.

Apple pie

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4.
  2. Remove the lined pastry tin from the fridge and fill it carefully with the apple mixture.
  3. Brush the edges of the pastry with a little milk, and place the pastry lid on top. Press the lid gently around the edges to seal it, and trim off the excess pastry.
  4. Cut two slits in the centre of the lid, brush it with the remaining milk and sprinkle with the extra caster sugar.
  5. Bake the pie for 50-55 minutes until it's a nice, golden colour.

To serve

  1. Let the pie rest for 15 minutes before removing it from the tin.
  2. Serve with double cream or vanilla ice cream – or Wensleydale cheese (a Yorkshire classic).

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