Friday, November 1, 2013

Upside-down Apple Pie

It's been months since my last post so I'm writing what I like to call "A Comeback Post."  And what better way to come back then to post the recipe that all my Instagramers asked for?

This Upside-down Apple Pie has been a staple on our holiday dessert table for YEARS and last week when I was craving it, I called up Mom and asked her how she makes hers.  She told me that there are tons of recipes for this pie on the internet (she first saw it in an old issue of Southern Living) but she prefers to do the "semi-homemade" version where you use store-bought crusts.  This was more than fine with me because I'm more of a cook than a baker anyway.
Then my Mom rattled off her recipe (which is pretty much what you see below), but I still perused a few recipes online and what I realized is that people make apple pie different ways. Some like their pie sweeter and some people prefer theirs more tart.  Mine is in the middle because I use all granny smith apples (tart) but I used brown sugar (rich and sweet), so I encourage you to edit my filling ingredients as you please. But what I REALLY wanted to show you all is the process to creating the "upsidedown effect."  The upside-down effect is what makes this pie so special because it magically gives you 2 pies in 1.  You've got a pecan pie over an apple pie which is nothing short of genius!
So please make this, send me pictures, comment and just let me know how it all goes!  And I think this goes without saying but this pie is perfect for the upcoming holiday season.  Enjoy!

2 refrigerated pie crusts (usually sold 2 to a pack)

Pecan "Topping"
1/3 cup butter, melted

1 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Apple Filling
7-8 medium sized granny smith apples, peeled cored and cut into 1-inch chunks
1 cup light brown (or white) sugar
2 tablespoons all purpose flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon nutmeg
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold, diced


Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Then, using about 1 tablespoon of the melted butter, thoroughly grease a 9" pie pan.  To make the pecan topping, mix the remaining butter, pecans, brown sugar and cinnamon in a bowl and spread the mixture onto the bottom of the greased pie pan, pressing mixture on the sides if necessary.  Next, gently unroll 1 pie crust and fit it over pecan mixture in the pie pan, allowing excess crust to hang over the sides.

Then (in the same bowl, if you like) mix apples, sugar, flour, cinnamon and nutmeg together and spoon evenly into the crust.  Dice the cold butter into even smaller cubes and dot over the apple filling.  Unroll remaining pie crust, place over apple filling and firmly press both crusts together.  Remove any crust hanging over pan with the back edge of a knife and then you can crimp or design edges as you see fit. 

Cut 4-5 slits into the top of the pie to release steam (see picture) and cover only the edges of the pie with aluminum foil to prevent excess browning.  Place pie on large pan to catch overflow and place pie on the lower rack of the oven and bake for 50 minutes, removing the foil from the edges the last 10 mins of cooking.  After 50 mins you're looking for golden brown crust and the apples to be soft when a knife is inserted through a slit.  

Allow pie to cool/rest for 10-15 mins on a wire rack and lastly place a serving plate over the pie and then invert pie onto the plate.  Gently remove the pie pan, which should remove easily but you may have to transfer any lingering pecans onto the pie.  Allow to cool completely then cover with saran until ready to serve.  I know it's tempting but serving the pie before its come to room temperature can make for a soupy filling so be patient!  This pie, as with most pies, is best served with vanilla ice cream.

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