Friday, November 30, 2012

Lattice Apple Pie with Mexican Brown Sugar

Pie making is not my specialty, but I come from a family of pie lovers, so occasionally like to challenge myself with a recipe slightly out of the norm and then share my bounty. 

While this pie may look like any other lattice-topped apple pie, I can assure you it is not. This pie is sweetened with Mexican brown sugar that comes in a solid, conical form, and is called Piloncillo. Made from the boiled down juices of crushed sugar cane poured into molds to harden, piloncillo has been in use for over five hundred years. The flavor is intense, earthy, and deeply caramel. 

This recipe is from and well worth making. Add a new ingredient to your repertoire and delight the pie lovers in your family.

Lattice Apple Pie with Mexican Brown Sugar

1/2 pound piloncillo
3/4 cup water
4 (1-inch-wide) strips orange zest
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon 
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
2 1/2 pound medium apples 
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
Pastry for a double-crust pie
1 tablespoon milk
1 teaspoon sugar

Put a large heavy baking sheet in middle of oven and preheat oven to 425°F.

Bring piloncillo, water, zest, spices, and 1/8 teaspoon salt to a boil in a small heavy saucepan, covered, stirring occasionally until piloncillo has dissolved. Remove lid and boil over medium-low heat until syrup is thickened and reduced to about 3/4 cup, 6 to 10 minutes. Discard zest and cool syrup slightly.

Meanwhile, peel and core apples, then cut into 1/2-inch-wide wedges.
Toss apples with flour, then with syrup. 

Roll out 1 piece of dough (keeping remaining piece chilled) on a lightly floured surface with a lightly floured rolling pin into a 13-inch round, then fit into a 9-inch pie plate. 
Trim edge, leaving a 1/2-inch overhang, and chill shell.

Roll out remaining piece of dough on a lightly floured surface with a lightly floured rolling pin into a 16-by 11-inch rectangle. Cut dough crosswise into 11 (1 1/4-inch-wide) strips.

Stir apple mixture, then spoon evenly into pie shell. Weave a tight lattice pattern over pie with pastry strips. 

Trim all strips flush with edge of pie plate. Fold bottom crust up over edge of lattice and crimp. Brush lattice (but not edge) with milk and sprinkle with sugar. 
Bake pie on hot baking sheet 20 minutes.

Reduce oven temperature to 375°F and bake until crust is golden and filling is bubbling, 50 to 60 minutes more. Cool pie to warm or room temperature, about 1 1/2 hours.

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1 comment:

Alycia Nichols said...

Why, oh why, are you tempting me with this incredibly beautiful (and no doubt delicious) pie?!!??!! It looks so tasty! I enjoy making pies, but I don't have anyone to bake them for since my Dad's Alzheimer's got worse. He completely forgets that he used to adore apple pie! It was his favorite since he was a kid...with vanilla ice cream. Now he is totally disinterested in it. I'm so glad that you enjoy dipping your toe in the pie-making waters every so often to allow others the chance to enjoy your talent. Have a wonderful weekend!!!