Archive for the 'food' Category

Caramel Apple Pie

Caramel Apple Pie

Before going on vacation, I baked an apple pie recipe from The Pioneer Woman that I’ve always wanted to try. My excuse? I had a pile of apples from my mom’s Fuji apple tree. Actually, it used to be my tree… when I still lived at home.

Fuji Apples

Now, normally for baking recipes, the Fuji apple is not what I would choose. The ones you get from the store tend to be too sweet and don’t hold their shape very well. So typically I would bake pies and crisps using Granny Smith or Pippin. But the Fuji apples from my mom’s tree happen to be a little bit more tart than the ones from the store. They work pretty well in baking recipes!

unbaked pie crust

For this pie, I used a store-bought Pillsbury crust. I do have some homemade pie crust dough in my freezer… but I’m saving those for later in the season when I want to make a 2-crust pie or another chicken pot pie.

Sliced apples

One of my biggest pet peeves about apple pie is CRUNCHY APPLES. I HATE CRUNCHY APPLES IN MY PIE! I prefer them to be tender…and therefore I chop my apples pretty thin.

before baking...

Whoops I skipped a few steps on the photos! I mixed sugar, flour, and cinnamon into the chopped apples. Cinnamon was not in the original recipe… but I just can’t do apple desserts without cinnamon! I also mixed some cinnamon into the crumb topping. I LOVE CINNAMON!

Caramel Apple Pie

Before putting the pie in the oven, I covered the crust edges with some foil, which I later removed about halfway through baking. This was to keep the edges from getting overly browned before the inside of the pie had a chance to fully cook. Also, I ended up needing to bake this much longer than the recipe states (I’d say a good 20 minutes longer). This may have been partly my fault, for placing the pie pan on a cookie sheet (to catch the drippings), instead of directly on the oven rack.

I also used less caramel topping than the recipe called for. I don’t know… I was too afraid to drown it in sauce. I’d never had apple pie with caramel topping on it before. But after I tasted this pie, I decided to go ahead and use the full amount from now on. It was so good!

I also didn’t use as many pecans on the top as the recipe called for. But that was only because my pie was pretty rounded on top and most of the nuts would just roll right off when I tried to sprinkle them on!

One thing Jason and I both really loved about this pie was that you could taste the slight saltiness in the topping. What? Salty apple pie?? Trust me, that 1/4 tsp of salt really took it up a notch.

I have to confess that I made this pie a second time a couple weeks later, for a family dinner. And I bought a fancy red pie pan with scalloped edges just for the event. I thought my plain glass Pyrex pan was too boring. Well, sadly my pie did not cook all the way through in that new pie pan. This time I had placed it directly on the rack… but the dish was much deeper than my usual pie pan… so the bottom crust and the apples on the bottom layer didn’t cook all the way through. So sad. I hate when I mess up in the kitchen… especially when I’m serving something to other people! But everyone said it was delicious anyway. And it was, if you only ate the top half.

That’s one of the benefits of the plain glass pie pan… you can lift it up and check the bottom crust for doneness. Couldn’t do that with my new red pan!

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