If I can bake this yummy pie and yes, it is vegan…so can you. Here’s a tip before we begin: Math isn’t hard. Baking is mathematical. Don’t skimp or add too much of an ingredient unless you are Martha Stewart. I wouldn’t challenge her methodology.
- ½ Cup of ice cold water. I fill a half cup measuring cup with water and place it in the freezer before I do anything else. We’ll come back to this step later.
- Flour. White unbleached flour. I am fortunate to not have any issues with gluten. If you do then yeah a white gluten free flour will work as well. If you use whole wheat it will taste yucky and not fuse well.
- Apples. I prefer a not overly sweet pie so that when the green granny smith apples are handy in combination with a couple of pink lady, gala, or something like those. I don’t like to use macintosh.and definitely not red delicious. You decide what works for your taste buds. I usually use about 5 granny smiths and 3 pink ladies. All are medium to large sized. This time I only had small granny smiths and galas. So I doubled up on the amount.
- Sugar. White sugar. Any substitute sugar may cause the pie to not stay intact. Sugar is the glue here. If you can’t have a lot of sugar then use a substitute. So what if the pie falls apart?
- Cinnamon and nutmeg come in handy.
- 7 oz of Earth Balance vegan butter. 7. Not less (too dry). Not more (too gooey). I scoop it out of the container and measure it. Remember one cup is 8 oz. You may use the sticks of Earth Balance. If you do that you should follow Deb Perlman, The Smitten Kitchen’s technique of cutting even slices and then cutting them into quarters. My way is quicker though.
- A rolling pin and some saran wrap or reusable plastic bags.
- Two mixing bowls see pictures. A mixing spoon. One fork.
- A peeler and a pie plate that is about 9.5 or 10” in diameter.
Ready? We got this!
Let’s make the dough:
In one of the mixing bowls.
2 ½ cups of flour… put it in one of the mixing bowls. Add the 7oz of Earth Balance about the size of a bottle cap at a time. See my photos.
After adding the butter add the ice cold water to the flour and Earth Balance vegan butter. I usually add half of it then mix the 3 ingredients together and then add the rest of the water. The ingredients will begin to like dough. See picture. Ah man…. don’t forget the sugar. I almost forgot to mention it. Add 2 tablespoons of sugar. This helps the crust fuse.
When. the dough is doughy, make to round globs out of it and either wrap them in saran wrap or what I did was use some plastic bags from tortillas. Place them in the refrigerator for at the very least 30 minutes. An hour is better but 30 min is fine.
Now would be a good time to turn the oven on to 500 degrees F.
In the other mixing bowl add:
One tablespoon of cinnamon and one tablespoon of nutmeg. Also add a teaspoon of fine grain salt, ¾ cup of sugar and 2 tablespoons of flour. This is the batter for the apples.
Peel your apples. Cut your apples. So basically you want the Apple pieces to be around the same size do they cook evenly. I like a chunky pie so I cut my slices on the bigger size. My mom makes her apple pies rhos way and I always lobe her pies!
Put the apples in the bowl I mentioned above. Stir them.around and get the apples full of the batter. I put my peels in my compost, but I also give some to my Pitbull Holly. She loves the skins.
Now put the apples aside and get the rolling pin out. On a clean surface toss a couple of spoonfuls of flour down. This will help the crust you are about to make not stick to the surface. It doesn’t hurt to add a little flour to the coat the rolling pin too.
Get the dough out of the fridge and dispose of plastic wrap or reuse for something else. I do the latter when possible. Place one of the dough balls on that clean surface that has a little flour on it. It also doesn’t hurt to cover the dough a smidge with some flour so it rolls smoother.
Roll gently and calmly. Really. I have taught pie therapy classes to big muscle guys and they had to mellow out. Easy does it. As it flattens out flip it over and turn it 90 degrees and roll it some more. Roll it baby until it is wide enough to cover the base of the pie dish and the sides.
The our dish should be greased slightly with some more Earth Balance. Real light.
Now everyone has their own ways of transferring the base and sides of the pie to the pie dish. Some fold it in quarters and lay it in. Some rolled the dough out on wax paper and flip it over the dish. I just take a deep breath and gently transfer the dough face up into the pie dish.
Now I didn’t have the right size dish. My dish was too big so for this pie I didn’t have the crust over the edges. If you have a 9.5” or 10” pie pan you should be able to make the crust ends.
Now put the apples and gooey batter in the dish.
Repeat the rolling out the dough steps but this time place the final crust as the cover for the pie. Don’t panic if you you have some gaps. You can use done of the dough from other parts of the pie where there’s too much to fill the holes. We ain’t Martha Stewart here! We just want a pie that tastes amazing!
Now we’re almost done. You will want to take a regular fork to once again gently like some air holes on the cover of the pie. This will make the pie moist.
Some people also like to use the fork around the edges to make lines. Go for it if that makes you happy.
Put it in the oven BUT turn the oven down to 425!
Set a timer for 30 min.
After 30 min turn the oven down to 375. and set an alarm for 20 minutes.
Get the cooling rack out and put it on the counter. Now when the pie is done baking (it should be golden around the edges. If at anytime it looks like it is black, take it out..It’s done. Let the pie coil down for at least 4 hours.
Serve with vanilla vegan ice cream and let us know here know how it went.
GB Woolf is an artist/musician living in Seattle with 4 other humans, an animal rights activist, co- owner of one elderly rescue pitbull named Holly, along with 5 rescue cats whose names are Boris Yeltsin, Rookie, Pants, Kinkajou and the latest addition a kitten named Birdie. Animals are our friends, not our food.