I love fall. It's hard to believe how far into fall we are. However, it's also hard to believe I have an 8-month old.
One of the things that I enjoy, and that I missed doing for a few years, is apple picking. I finally went in St. Louis last year right before Alex and I moved. So I decided I had to see if there was a good orchard in New Jersey where I could get good apples. The one I heard of was near Philly, so I drove up there when my parents came to visit.
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We got so many apples. Somehow apple pie came up. Mom wondered if you could make it without cinnamon, and I didn't see why not. I told my mom that I would make an apple pie as long as I didn't have to find the recipe for it. She found Chef John's Caramel Apple Pie recipe on All Recipes.
It didn't turn out perfectly the first time, but it was tasty enough to tweak to try a second time. It's a nice change from heavily spiced, overly sweet apple pie. I think this will be the apple pie recipe I make for a while.
The first time I made this, I didn't bake it long enough, the caramel didn't set, and the filling was runny. I boiled the caramel for a minute to remedy that. We used a combination of Granny Smith and Gold Rush apples the first time, and just Granny Smiths the second time. Both worked really well. Frozen pie crust sheets (like from Pillsbury) worked well for this recipe, but feel free to make your own crust if you want. Use enough apples to really fill the crust. I used 6 medium apples the second time, but should have used 7 or 8. They will cook down a little, but will pack well if they're sliced thinly enough. I use my apple peeler and corer when I make it, which definitely helps.
This was an appley pie. It wasn't too sweet, and it wasn't cloying the way that clovey apple pies can be sometimes. The cinnamon lightly flavored the caramel, but I don't think you would notice it unless you were sensitive to it. Like I said before, this was a nice change of pace from "traditional" apple pie, and I'll definitely make it again.
Like this recipe or have questions? Rate it or leave a comment below!
In the past:
Four Years Ago: Pan de Muerto Bones
Five Years Ago: Cinnamon-Apple Sourdough Flatbread, Olive Oil Granola with Dried Apricots and Pistachios (my favorite!!), Cooking Light's Fudgy Brownies
A delicious caramel apple pie, made without the heavy spices. Cinnamon optional! No thermometer necessary.
- 6 tablespoons butter
- ½ cup sugar
- ½ cup brown sugar
- ¼ cup water
- ¼ teaspoon cinnamon (optional)
- a pinch salt
- 5 large (or 7+ medium) apples (peeled, cored, and sliced)
- 2 pie crusts or dough for a double-crust pie
Combine butter, sugars, water, cinnamon, and salt in a small saucepan. Heat over medium heat until mixture comes to a boil. Boil, stirring constantly, for about 1 minute; this will thicken the caramel. Remove from heat and let cool briefly.
If you're not using premade crusts (I won't judge; I did since I have a baby), divide the pastry dough in half. Roll each half into a 10-inch circle. Place one crust in the bottom of a greased 9-inch pie plate. (Mine was glass.) Use a pizza cutter to cut the other crust into 8 strips. Spread apples into the pie plate. Place four strips of dough across the pie, and place the other 4 across the plate the other way. Weave the strips into a lattice. Tuck the edges of the lattice under the bottom crust.
Pour the caramel sauce over the lattice and onto the apples. Use a pastry brush to brush the sauce along all of the lattice and crust.
Place filled pie pan on a foil-lined pizza pan as the pie will bubble over. Bake at 425F for 15 minutes. Reduce temperature to 350F and bake for another 35-40 minutes, until the crust is golden brown and the apple filling is bubbling.
Cool completely before slicing.
adapted from Chef John's Caramel Apple Pie on AllRecipes