Yo dawg. I heard you liked apples.
This challenge was done in a GUEST KITCHEN! Woot! I was given this challenge to try something different for a special somebody who loves apple pies. The name explains it all: I’m going to bake apples in some apples so we can eat apples while we eat apples.
I needed the same ingredients that I would use for a regular apple pie:
- 5 or 6 granny smith apples
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 tbsp brown sugar
- pie crust – I’m going with pre-made crust
I suppose I could have made pie crust from scratch, but this is Labor Day weekend. There are more fun things to do than make pie crust by hand.
Besides, I could already tell this would be a time-consuming challenge. The first thing I had to do was core the apples and scoop out the insides. There wasn’t a nifty apple-corer around for me to use, so I used a small knife and a spoon to scoop out the insides of the apples. That worked pretty well, but the whole task felt like it took hours. When I removed the interior parts, I had to make sure I didn’t puncture the sides of the apples or then I would have to start aaaaaaall over again with a new apple. Luckily I didn’t have to…but those apples would have flown across the kitchen first before I started that tedious task again.
The original recipe instructions say to keep the insides if I can so I can use it for the filling later. Yeah, right. I couldn’t salvage much (the scooped-out pieces weren’t even, plus I kept eating the insides as I went so there wasn’t enough anyway), but it wasn’t a big deal because I had plenty of apples left over to use for the filling.
After spending FOREVER carving out the insides of the apples, I was left with four little apple shells and began peeling one extra apple to chop up into little pieces. I put those little pieces in a bowl, added the sugars and cinnamon, mixed it all together, and then filled each apple with the pie filling.
At first glance, it seemed like a lot of sugar for such a small amount of apples (just one), but then I remembered that the shells needed some sugar too. Even the shells need some cinnamon sugar lovin’.
Then it was time to make a lattice pattern with the pre-made crust. That part was fun and easy. I just needed to roll out the pie crust, cut it up into 1/2 inch strips, and use my elementary school skills and weave the strips together. I made them on the counter top first instead of weaving the strips on top of the apples. That just made more sense to me.
When my wee little apples were all nicely assembled, I arranged them in a small baking pan and added a little water to the bottom. The water is probably needed so that the apples and crust don’t dry out so fast. Then I covered it with foil and put it in the oven for 25 minutes. When the oven beeps after that time, I removed the foil and let it cook for an additional 25 minutes.
Just like I thought from the very beginning, this whole ordeal was very time consuming. I was watching Star Wars Return of the Jedi at the same time. I started scooping the insides of the apples right when the movie began, and by the time I put the lattice crust on the apples, Mon Mothma was giving the rebel briefings on the Death Star plans. You do the math.
I feared that the apples were going to soften too much or wilt in the oven, but the apples kept their shape. They were in the oven for the perfect amount of time. The apple shells were soft but strong enough to keep the filling inside. They tasted exactly like an apple pie would, except with less crust. In fact, if you love a lot of apple pie and not a lot of crust, these little things are meant for you.
Presentation: Very cute.
Tastiness: I’d say! Just like apple pie.
Rematch?: These are unique and quite tasty, but given a choice between these and a real apple pie, I’d just go with the apple pie.