Sing it with me: It’s the most wonderful time of the year! And no, I’m not talking about reindeer, jingle bells, or majestic conifers. I’m talking about BUTTER SEASON! November officially kicks off that two-month span when it’s totally acceptable to do nothing but wear your fluffiest socks and stay inside all day, baking up a storm. Yes, it gets dark at 5 PM, but if it means I can be elbows-deep in butter for two months straight, I’ll take it.
What better way to kick off this glorious season of baking than with an apple pie? A gorgeous, homemade, lattice-topped pie fresh out of the oven is like a warm hug from your Grandma. I love that it’s as classic as it gets, but it’s still possible to put your own stamp on it. My version has a cheddar crust (BECAUSE CHEESE!), a warm spice mix to punch up the apples inside, and a maple-bourbon whipped cream (trust me on this one–it’s a showstopper).
Speaking of showstoppers, this is a really exciting post for me, because I got to work with an amazing stop motion artist to turn my pie recipe into an amazing video! Check out how epic/adorable this is:
When you’re making an all-butter crust for pie (as I prefer to do), the quality of the butter is really important. Pie crust is really just butter, flour, and water, so the better your butter tastes, the better your crust will taste. I bake with Organic Valley salted butter. Some cooks prefer unsalted butter, but I like my crusts on the savory side, so the salted variety works for me.
Butter is one of those ingredients where I can tell a HUGE difference in flavor between organic and conventional–there’s just something about organic butter that tastes more, well, buttery! And there are plenty of reasons to use organic dairy besides just that it tastes better: cows that are treated well, farms that respect nature’s delicate balance, and no sketchy additives snuck in along the way, to name a few.
I know you’ll love this recipe–tell me how yours turned out in the comments! Happy Butter Season, everyone! And happy baking!
SPICED APPLE PIE WITH A CHEDDAR CRUST & MAPLE-BOURBON WHIPPED CREAM
2 and 1/4 cups all purpose flour, plus a little extra for rolling out
pinch kosher salt
1 cup cold Organic Valley butter, cut into ½-inch chunks
1 cup grated extra sharp, good quality cheddar
5-6 Tablespoons ice-cold water
Sugar for sprinkling
1. Mix the flour and salt in a bowl. Rub in the butter or use a pastry cutter to mix the butter into the flour, leaving visible butter chunks throughout. Add the cheese and mix around with your hands. Add the cold water, one tablespoon at a time, until the dough comes together.
2. Turn the fough out onto a lightly floured board and fold it over itself a couple times, pushing the dough together with your hands so it sticks in a ball, but not kneading it or over working it. Fold it over a couple times until you can form it into a circular, flattened shape that's not too sticky. Wrap with plastic wrap and refrigerate for an hour.
6 firm apples, peeled, cored, and thinly sliced
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
1/4 cup flour
pinch of kosher salt
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
pinch of cardamom
pinch of cloves
zest of 2 lemons
2 tablespoons Organic Valley butter
1 egg, beaten with 1 tablespoon milk
1. Preheat the oven to 425.
2. Toss the apples with the sugars, spices, lemon zest, and flour.
3. Roll out 1/2 the pie dough in a circle that's about 12" round.
4. Transfer the dough to a 9" pie plate and press down gently so the dough gets into the pie pan crease. Fill the dough with the apples.
5. Dot the remaining butter on top of the pie filling
6. Roll out the remaining dough to another 12" circle. Cut the circle into 1" wide strips. Lay the first strip long ways across the top of the pie; place the next strip horizontally along the bottom of the pie. Continue to layer the strips, lifting up alternate strips as you go to weave the topping into a lattice, until the pie is covered, with spaces in between the pie weave.
7. Fold the edges of the bottom crust over the edges of the lattice, pressing together to seal the crusts.
8. Brush the entire top of the dough with the egg wash and sprinkle with the sugar. Bake for 25 minutes at 425, then lower the heat to 350 and bake for 45 more minutes. Cool to room temperature before slicing.
MAPLE-BOURBON WHIPPED CREAM
1/4 cup good-tasting bourbon
2 T. pure maple syrup
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 pint Organic Valley heavy whipping cream
1. In a saucepan, boil the bourbon until it's reduced to 2 Tablespoons. Stir in the maple syrup and cook for a few more minutes. Cool to room temperature.
2. Meanwhile, whip the heavy whipping cream with the cinnamon in a stand mixer until stiff peaks form. Stir in the maple-bourbon mix with a spatula. Refrigerate until ready to use.