Sunday, October 14, 2012

Ugly Food

Isn't it true that the uglier the food, the better it tastes??

Okay, maybe not so true, but, for some reason when someone says "rustic" when in terms of food, The word "ugly" comes to my mind, because, well, "rustic" is just a foodie term for act-like-you-know-what-you're-doing-because-no-one-will-know-the-difference-if-you-know-what-you're-doing-or-not. It's supposed to look like that. Rustic=food art. Very subjective.

I have been making this "rustic" open faced apple pie for many years. It is easy. delicious. and ugly. But, you be the judge. I adapted it from food goddess Ina Garten.

                                               Rustic Apple Pie


                   4 1/2 cups peeled, diced apples ( a blend of different varieties is nice)
                    1/4 Cup flour

                    1/4 Cup sugar
                    1/4 tsp kosher salt

                    1/2 tsp Cinnamon
                    1/4 tsp Nutmeg

                     Pinch of each allspice and ginger

                     4 Tbsp. cold, unsalted butter, diced

                     2 Cups flour

                     1/4 Cup sugar

                     1/2 tsp. Kosher salt

                      2 sticks, cold, unsalted butter, diced

            To make the crust, put the flour, sugar, and salt into the bowl of a food processor and pulse a few times to mix. Add in those beautiful, chilly little cubes of butter and pulse a couple times until the butter is pea sized.

With the motor running, slowly add 1/4 cup of ice water through the feed tube, adding tiny bits at a time, until the dough just starts to come together. Turn the dough onto a floured surface, and form into two equal discs. Wrap each disc in plastic wrap, and put one into the fridge to chill for at least one hour, and freeze the other for a later use, or a rustic pie emergency. Give your food processor bowl a quick rinse because we are going to use it later.

While the pie crust is chilling, make the filling. In the bowl of your food processor, combine the flour, sugar, salt, and spices. Give a couple of pulses to mix. Add the butter, and mix until the mixture is crumbly, and starts to come together.

After your dough has been properly chilled, roll it out into a circle about 11 inches in diameter.  I roll it out straight on my parchment paper so I don't have to transfer it later. I'm a not so a good at a transferring a dough.

Put the rolled out dough on your parchment paper and then onto a rimmed baking sheet. Pile your apples in the middle of the dough, spreading out to almost the sides, but leaving a 2 inch or so border of crust. Sprinkle your buttery filling mixture onto the apples and gently fold the crust border over the apples, pleating it, to make a circle.


If you want to be extra fancy and woo the rustic with your fancy ways, in a small bowl, stir together an egg white with a tbsp. of water, then brush the sides of the crust with it. Sprinkle it with some sugar to give it a sweet, golden kiss when baked. Fancy dancy.

Bake your pie in a 450 degree oven for 20-25 minutes or until golden. Let cool a bit before cutting it up like a pizza pie and scarfing it down. Yum.

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