Classic Apple Pie on The Big Show

Classic Apple Pie

Today I’m SO excited to be on “The Big Show” (for those of you not around my neck of the woods, that’s our local AM-Farm Show on 1040AM: WHO Radio). As you locals may have heard if you’ve listened before, I rarely go into the studio without treats for my friends and today is no different.  Bob Quinn, one of the hosts, and I have quite the history which dates back to my days of softball, my first job and now my blog and farming with my Dad. He even umpired some of my softball games and  yes, he did give me the outside corner, thank you Bob. So… PIE. Bob deserves pie, and there’s no better pie than Classic Apple Pie to serve up in the studio today. (*I’m up at 11 p.m. Thursday night waiting for my pie to come out of the oven, writing this post. I’ll be on the air today Friday, at 11:30 a.m.)

Today I’ll be talking to The Big Show guys with my friends from the Iowa Food and Family Project, about food, farming and family. I’ve always been a fan of this initiative that helps farmers tell their story about how they raise the food that’s on our plates. I’m also incredibly lucky to have the opportunity to work the summer away with a darn cool Iowa blogger, Kristin from Iowa Girl Eats. With The Iowa Food and Family Project, we’ve put together a mighty fine cookbook with our recipes and those of other Iowa farmers. We’ll be handing these cookbooks out at events around the state this summer like farmer’s markets, various events at statewide Hy-Vee locations and the IOWA STATE FAIR! Keep up with me on Facebook to see where we’re headed next!

The apple pie recipe I’m sharing today is the longer, more traditional pastry-topped version of the quick and easy Harvest Apple Pie that appears in the Iowa Food and Family Project Cookbook. (See photo above for the crumble topped pie.)

I want to wish all of the mothers out there a Happy Mother’s Day! I hope you enjoy the day any way you wish.
Thank goodness we’ve (as in my Dad) got the crops in… so maybe we can make that Mother’s Day brunch happen this year after all… maybe.
Or probably not… you’ll find me in my kitchen, baking like a mad-woman, and loving my Mother’s Day treat: the kids and my husband doing the dishes. Amen!

Let’s bake!
Apple Pie


Classic Apple Pie

This is the most classic apple pie recipe out there. Basic butter crust, delicious filling and lattice topped pastry. The best pie I make. Feel free to swap apples for pears... (my favorite!)
Prep Time25 minutes
Cook Time1 hour
Total Time1 hour 55 minutes
Servings: 1 9" pie
Author: Cristen


Double Crust

  • 2 1/2 cups All Purpose Flour
  • 1 tbsp Granulated Sugar
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 2 sticks Butter well chilled and cubed
  • 1 large egg
  • 2/3 cup water very cold
  • 2 tsp vinegar

Pie Filling

  • 6 large apples baking apples like Granny Smith, Cortland, Johnathan, or a combination
  • 1 small Lemon zest and juice
  • 1 cup Granulated Sugar
  • 1/4 cup All Purpose Flour
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon *add up to 1 tsp if you like cinnamon
  • 1 tsp Vanilla and a pinch of SALT!

Crust Topping

  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp water
  • 1 tbsp Granulated Sugar


  • Preheat Oven to 400 degrees F. Crust: Combine dry ingredients, cut in chilled butter cubes until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add egg, water and vinegar, handle as little as possible. Add more water if needed, until a handful of the dough mixture holds together in the palm of your hand when squeezed. Pat the dough into a ball gently. Cut in 1/2. Wrap in plastic wrap, then pat into disks. Refrigerate while making the filling. (*Freeze if you are a fast apple peeler!) *When you are ready to roll out, remove crust from refrigerator or freezer, roll out to a 13 inch round. Place one round in bottom of pie plate, do not stretch. Cut strips out of the other, and basket weave over the top of pie in lattice fashion.
  • Filling: Core and peel apples. Slice to 1/4" thickness. Add zest of lemon and juice. Add sugar and rub zest together with sugar to release oils of lemon into the sugar. Add flour, vanilla and a pinch of salt. Stir well until incorporated, using care not to break up the apple slices. Pour into pie plate that is lined with one crust, finish top crust with lattice style strips or one flat pastry top with vents cut out. Roll crust over top, crimp to seal the seams.
  • Egg Wash for Crust Topping: In a small bowl, combine egg and water, whisk well. Brush over prepared pie. Sprinkle with sugar. Place a foil collar (aluminum foil, folded in thirds lengthwise and wrapped around pie) or pie crust shield around edge of pie for baking. Remove foil collar for last 10-15 minutes of baking.
  • Bake: in a preheated 400 degree oven for 20 minutes, then reduce heat to 350 and bake for 40-50 minutes until slow bubbles form in the juices around the edges of pie (you can see this through the lattice crust or vent holes). If the bubbles are quickly popping, the filling is not thick enough yet. Cover with foil if center of pie is overbrowning towards the end of baking (*see photo on my post, I need to follow my own advice). Remove foil collar for end of baking to brown crust as desired. Remove from oven, let cool for 4 hours so pie will 'set' properly. (*won't be runny.) Makes one 9" pie.


Bake pie in a 9" standard sized pie plate. Lots of boutique pie plates are 10" or deep dish, etc. These will need more crust and filling, increase this recipe by 25%. (Trust me, this works.) I use the good-old standby Pyrex clear glass pie plates.  You can buy them at any hardware or grocery store, and they are the best. They even have the perfect lip on the edge of the pie plate that the crimped crust can lay on perfectly. Yes. Oh yes.
Use additional flour, up to 1/3 cup to thicken very juicy apples! Use more sugar, up to 1 1/4 cups, to sweeten very tart apples.
LEMON zest in apple pie? I love all citrus, especially lemon. I enjoy a punch of citrus in my fruit pies, especially in the springtime. Feel free to use half the zest of lemon and half the juice if you want something  a bit more subdued. I also cut down the cinnamon in my apple pie this time of year, I LOVE cinnamon... in the fall and winter.
Pears vs. Apples: Typically, die-hard pie-freaks love APPLE PIE. In a side by side taste test, I have yet to have anyone choose apple pie over pear pie. Try it... especially when pears are $.68 per pound in the fall. The texture is wonderful, and where apples can sometimes fall short depending on the growing season, pears are less fussy. Trust me. Pear pie is my favorite pie... besides berry, coconut cream, lemon meringue... the list goes on.
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1 Comment

  • Reply jenieats May 11, 2015 at 12:34 pm

    Excited for you and Kristen. The cookbook idea sounds unique. Can’t wait to check it out and see you later on.

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