Saturday, December 10, 2005

So what became of those crabapples?

Well, I'll tell you. I got out my half-size pie plate again and made a demi batch of Rosy Crabapple Pie, a recipe adapted from my 1960s Farm Journal Freezing & Canning Cookbook. The recipe had been staring me in the face ever since I found the book. Could there really be another kind of classic fruit pie that I'd never tried?

Oh, yes. Yes, indeed. Oddly, it's nothing like apple pie. In fact, it has an almost berryish or plummy flavor, maybe due to some weird synergy with the vanilla (!) in the filling. I guarantee you haven't had anything like it before--unless, of course, you or someone you know owns the same cookbook.

(makes one 9-inch deep-dish pie)

Pastry for a two-crust pie
6 c. finely chopped red crabapples, peels left on
1 c. sugar
1 Tbs. flour
1/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla
1 1/2 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
1/4 c. water

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
Toss crabapples with sugar, flour, and salt. Transfer this mixture to a pastry-lined 9-inch pie plate. Sprinkle with vanilla, lemon juice, and water. Cover with top pastry; flute edges and cut vents.
(At this point I like to brush the top crust with milk and sprinkle it with sugar.)
Bake at 450 degrees F for 10 minutes, then reduce heat to 375 and bake another 40 to 45 minutes, or until golden brown and bubbling.