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Packed with tart Granny Smith apples, cinnamon and a little cream, Dutch Apple Pie is the pretty and delicious cousin of the Classic Apple Pie.
Early Dutch Apple pies date back to the Middle Ages. They were named for the way they’re cooked, often in a deep Dutch oven. A bottom crust is pre-baked then filled with soft cooked apples flavored with warm spices like cinnamon and cardamom. In the United States, Dutch Apple pie typically refers to an apple pie with soft, pre-cooked apples covered with a crunchy, sweet and buttery streusel topping. While it does not differ greatly in flavor from the classic apple pie, the Dutch Apple Pie has a very different texture which we love.
We recently made our annual trip to a local apple orchard.
Family owned Carter Mountain Orchard in Charlottesville, Virginia is our favorite place to pick apples, drink fresh cider and binge on the famous, fresh, warm cider doughnuts. This year we were lucky enough to spend the day with our grandson Isaac and put him to work gathering apples for our Dutch Apple Pie. We also picked an enormous amount of Fuji apples to share and enjoy. The Chiles family really has it all figured out and make apple picking an event to remember! During apple season I highly recommend going early to beat the crowds! Weekends at the orchard get very busy this time of year.
Granny Smith’s are my favorite go-to apples for all our apple pies.
Their tart flavor and crisp texture pair perfectly with your favorite sweetener. Granny Smith’s are excellent for all purposes like baking, making sauces and jams and of course for eating out of hand! You can also do a combination of Granny Smith apples and another sweeter variety that are good for baking. If you get the chance to pick your own apples, I highly recommend it. Apple pies are out-of-this-world fantastic made with fresh picked apples, just saying.
We use our Perfect Pie Crust Recipe made in 3 Easy Steps for the base of all our pies.
Click HERE to get the pie crust recipe and to watch the how-to video. The crust is rolled out and pre-baked before filling. If you don’t want to make your own crust, use refrigerated store-bought pastry or your favorite frozen crust. Our flaky crust recipe makes enough for a double crust pie, or two single crust pies. If you don’t need both crusts, freeze one for later!
While the crust is chilling and then baking, the apples are cooked on the stovetop.
Sautéed in a little butter and tossed with cinnamon and sugar, the apples cook down into soft, little sweet bites. The juice is drained from the cooked apples and then combined with a little heavy cream before being added to the pre-baked pastry crust. Even though the apple filling is made with a little cream, ice cream on top is still (always) a great idea. I would not steer you wrong!
The easy streusel topping is mixed together and crumbled on top of the cooked apple filling.
Finally, the assembled pie is popped into the oven for just a short time, about 15 minutes. This is just long enough for the streusel topping to bake and lightly brown. The crumbled topping is sweet and crunchy, and the perfect compliment to the soft baked apple filling.
Dutch Apple Pie with ice cream? Yes indeed 😉
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Dutch Apple Pie
- 1 single Pie Crust Pastry for a 9-inch deep dish pan
For the crumble topping:
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup light brown sugar
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
For the apple filling:
- 4 to 4 1/2 pounds Granny Smith apples, about 10 medium/large apples
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- pinch of salt
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
To make the struesel topping:
- Combine the flour and sugars in a medium mixing bowl and drizzle with the melted butter. Toss with a fork to combine. Refrigerate until needed.
To make the pre-baked pie pastry:
- Prepare the pie pastry and line a 9-inch pie deep dish pan. Trim the dough and crimp the edges as desired. Place the pie shell in the refrigerator for 60 minutes. This will help control shrinkage during the blind bake.
- Adjust the oven rack to the lower-middle position. Preheat oven to 425F. Line the frozen pastry with a double thickness of heavy duty foil, making sure the fluted edge is covered. Fill the pastry with 2 cups of dried beans or pie weights. Bake for 20 minutes. Carefully remove the foil, beans or weights and return the pastry to the oven. Bake until light golden brown, about 10 minutes longer. Remove from the oven.
To make the apple filling:
- While the pie crust is chilling and baking, prepare the apples.
- Peel, quarter, and core apples; slice each quarter crosswise into four pieces about 1/4-inch thick. Toss apples, sugar, cinnamon, and salt in large bowl to combine.
- Heat butter in large Dutch oven over high heat until melted and the foaming stops. Add apples and toss to coat in the butter. Reduce heat to medium-high and cook, covered, stirring occasionally, until apples are softened and starting to break down, about 10-15 minutes.
- Set a large colander over large bowl. Spoon the cooked apples into the colander. Shake colander and toss apples to drain off as much juice as possible.
- Return the juice to the Dutch oven and add the cream. Bring to a boil over high heat; cook, stirring occasionally, until thickened and wooden spoon leaves trail on the bottom of the pan, about 5 minutes. Transfer the cooked apples to pre-baked pie shell; pour reduced juice mixture over and smooth top.
- Use a fork to break up any large clumps of the crumble topping. Spread the crumble evenly over the top of the apples. Bake the pie in the preheated oven until the topping is golden brown, about 15 minutes. The apple filling should be bubbling around the edges. Tent with foil if needed to prevent over browning.
- Cool on a wire rack and serve topped with ice cream if desired.
Here are a few more of our favorite apple pie recipes you might also enjoy:
Caramel Apple Pie ~ a delicious twist on a classic apple pie. The pie is lightly sweetened with a creamy caramel sauce, then served with an extra drizzle on top. Click HERE to get the recipe for Caramel Apple Pie.
Our Classic Double Crust Apple Pie Recipe is made with tart, juicy apples piled high and wrapped in a buttery, flaky, double crust pastry. To me, nothing says ‘home’ like Apple Pie! Click HERE for the Classic Apple Pie Recipe.
Apple Cranberry & Currant Crumb Pie ~ a delicious pie with a fantastic combination of tart and sweet fruits, all soaked in a little brandy and topped with a tasty crumble. Click HERE to get the recipe for Apple Cranberry & Currant Crumb Pie.
Thanks so much for stopping by! Tricia