Step by Step Traditional Homemade Apple Pie
This is a favorite dessert worldwide: Homemade Apple pie! A universal sweet having millions (if not billions) of fans all over the globe.
Yes, we’ve seen the expression “as American as Apple pie” but the truth is the Apple pie is a centuries old dessert, that remains extremely popular on both sides of the Atlantic.
Millions of Americans and Europeans have so many memories of their moms (and grandmas) baking delicious apple pies and their selves as kids being impatient to taste them :)
We are part of that tradition ourselves, so we couldn’t resist sharing our traditional apple pie recipe with all of you through our website.
Our version is very simple. The dough is a classic French dough, called Pâte Sucrée that contains flour, eggs, butter, water and sugar. As simple as that. Perhaps you ‘ve also seen it as Pâte Brisée. The Brisée type doesn’t contain any sugar and it’s therefore also suitable for savory pies.
Our filling is made with apples, cinnamon, a bit of clove, raisins, sugar, lemon and –if you like-a bit of Grand Marnier. Grand Marnier is a liqueur which pairs amazingly with this pie. If you want your pie to be more kid-friendly, you may omit this of course.
Instead of simply making the top crust by adding another disc of dough and slitting it, we prefer to make the Lattice crisscross pattern. This pattern allows the pie to ventilate better and therefore, bake better. Plus, it looks beautiful! Many people are intimidated by this pattern, but trust us, it’s VERY easy to make. You can find our method in the pictures below, or you can browse for videos on YouTube for tutorials. It’s really easy though.
The difference in this recipe in comparison to others in our site, is that we offer easy, step by step instructions for making the pie. This way, even if you never baked an apple pie before, if you read the instructions and follow the pictures below, we are confident you will be able to make a perfect pie.
Take a couple of minutes to read the instructions; we think you’ll get it at once. Even the Lattice crust. Then, give it a try! :)
So let’s see how to bake this delicious, traditional homemade dessert!
For the dough (Pâte Sucrée):
- 450gr / 16oz / 1lb all-purpose flour (you can also measure using 3 cups plus 4 tablespoons of flour)
- 250gr butter, unsalted (Do NOT use margarine instead of butter in this recipe!)
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 2 tablespoons caster sugar
- 2 tablespoons water
- 1 teaspoon salt
For the apple filling:
- 1kg /2.2lb / 35.3oz apples, peeled and chopped (see steps below)
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 170gr / 6oz (1 cup) brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon powder
- 20gr / 0.7oz (3 tablespoons) all purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 35gr / 1.2oz (1/4 cup) black (Corinth) raisins
- 1 tablespoon Grand Marnier (optional)
- 1 egg, beaten with a tablespoon of water (egg wash)
We first start making dough:
Sift the flour into a large bowl (pic.1). This will help incorporate some air in the dough, which will make it fluffier.
Add the salt and the caster sugar (pic.2).
Add the butter (pic.3) and mix with the flour and the caster sugar. If you have a special wire tool dough cutter you can use this here, otherwise use your hands (like we do).
Mix until all the flour becomes crumbly (pic.4).
Add the beaten eggs, mixed with the 2 tablespoons of water (pic. 5) and mix all with a spatula until you get a nice dough (pic. 6). You can always use your hands of course.
The end result will be a beautiful dough. Form into a ball (pic.7), cover with film (pic. 8) and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
While the dough is resting, we start making the apple filling:
Peel the apples and cut in quarters. Remove the core part from each quarter (pic. 9). Cut each quarter into strips (pic. 10). The strips can be as thick or thin as you like.
Slice the strips in 2 or 3 pieces (pic 11). Add them in a large bowl and add the lemon juice (pic. 12). Mix well. The point is to get some of the lemon in all the apples, in order to prevent them from browning.
Add the brown sugar (pic. 13), the cinnamon powder and the ground cloves (pic. 14).
Add the flour (pic. 15), and the raisins (pic. 16).
Mix well with your hands (pic. 17), and drizzle the Grand Marnier (pic. 18, optional). Set aside.
Remove the dough from the fridge and cut in half.
Dust your kitchen counter/table with some flour and put the first half on.
Using a rolling pin create a circle rolling from the center outwards, all around (pic. 19). You want to create a disc wide enough to cover a 28cm/11in round pan/pie dish (4-5cm/1.5-2in deep). We prefer using a tin metallic non-stick pan ourselves.
When the disc has formed, roll the dough on the pin (pic. 20).
If there's too much flour on the dough, you can dust it out with a brush (pic. 21).
Roll out the dough on the pan/dish (pic. 22).
Gently push the dough into the pan/dish, to take its form (pic. 23).
You can use the rolling pin at this point to cut the excess dough from the edge of the pan (pic. 24).
Add the apple filling (pic. 25). Gently spread it equally into the pan (pic. 26).
Take the second half of the dough, dust the counter/table with flour and again using the rolling pin form a similar disc as before. Cut the top and bottom parts and keep aside (pic. 27).
Using a pizza cutter or a knife, cut the dough into strips (pic. 28). The strips can be as many or as little as you prefer, depending on the width you want for them.
Add some of the strips vertically (pic. 29). Trim the edges (pic. 30) and set them aside with the excess dough.
Now it's time to form the Lattice (crisscross) crust. It's VERY easy, even though it seems complex.
Here's our method, which we call "Odds and Evens".
Pull the Even strips on the far edge towards you. In this pie, it's the strips 2,4,6,8.
Add a strip horizontally (pic. 31).
Put the Even strips (2, 4, 6, 8) back into their position, on top of the added strip (pic. 32).
From this point on, you lift the strips the other way. Away from you, instead of towards. And you select the Odd strips (1, 3, 5, 7, 9). Add again a horizontal strip (pic. 33).
Cover with the Odd strips.
Then do the same with the Even strips. Lift them, put a horizontal strip and put them down on top of it.
Then the Odd strips again, etc.
The final result is the wonderful crisscross pattern.
Now, take the excess dough you set aside before and form small strips to add them around the edge of the pan/dish (pic. 34).
Brush the crisscross pattern with egg wash (pic. 35) and sprinkle with some more brown sugar (pic. 36).
At this point cut some aluminum foil strips (pic. 37), and cover the dough on the edge of the pan (pic. 38). This helps it not being burned. You can also use some special metallic pie rings that exist in the market.
Place into the oven at the lower third rack, at 220 degrees Celsius/425 Fahrenheit and bake for 45 minutes. Remove the aluminum foil from the edge and continue baking for 30 to 45 minutes more.
IMPORTANT: Do not cut the pie for at least 3 hours after removing from the oven. This will help the pieces to stay together when you cut them, and will allow the juices to be absorbed.
Serve with whipped cream or ice cream. You can also dust with some caster sugar.
Use a variety of apples (at least 2 types); your pie will taste so much better!