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9 Holiday Cakes and Treats to Die For

San Francisco Baking Institute

Try this recipe with heirloom apples like Arkansas Black from something original!

Chai Spiced Apple Pie

Yield: 1, 9” Double-Crusted Pie

Yield 2, 9” pies, or 1 double-crusted pie Mixing Method: flaky or mealy pie dough

Pie Dough Ingredients

.305 kg Pastry or all purpose flour
.015 kg Sugar
.005 kg Salt
.225 kg Butter, cold
.060-.090 kg Water

*For a complete chart of baker’s percents and volumes, click here

Pie Dough Method (Mealy or Flaky)

1. Mix together the flour, sugar, and salt to combine.
2. Mix the dough either using a mixer, by hand, or a food processor.

By mixer Using the paddle, mix on low speed with cold, cubed butter until the butter is roughly pea-sized for flaky dough, or mixture appears sandy and few recognizable butter pieces remain for mealy dough. Then, add just enough cold water for the dough to come together, mixing on low speed. (More water will be required for flaky dough than for mealy.) Be very careful to not over mix the dough once water has been added.

By hand Cut the cubed butter into the dry ingredients with a knife, pastry blender, or bench scraper until the butter is roughly pea-sized for flaky dough, or mixture appears sandy and few recognizable butter pieces remain for mealy dough. Sprinkle with water and press and fold the mixture together until a cohesive mass forms. Be very careful to not over mix the dough once water has been added.

By food processor Follow the above principals and use brief pulses to cut the butter and add water. Take great care to not over-process. Wrap the dough in plastic and reserve in the refrigerator for a minimum of 4 hours. Roll dough, then line and trim molds or pie pan, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to minimize shrinkage during baking.

Apple Filling Ingredients

1.2 kg Granny Smith or other firm, tart apple (peeled, cored and sliced ¼ inch thick)
.150 kg Sugar
.002 kg Chai spice blend (see below)
.12 kg Cornstarch
.015 kg .03 kg Water, cold
.015 kg Fresh lemon juice

*For a complete chart of baker’s percents and volumes, click here

Apple Filling Method

1. Toss the apples with the sugar and chai spice, and place in a heavy bottom saucepan or Dutch oven over medium-low heat.
2. Cover and cook for 15-20 minutes, gently stirring from time to time, until apples are tender but not broken down.
3. Drain the apples in a colander, reserving the juices.
4. Return the juices to the pan, increase the heat to medium-high and reduce the juices by half.
5. Meanwhile, dissolve the cornstarch in the cold water.
6. Once the juices have reduced, whisk in the cornstarch slurry and allow to boil for 15 seconds, whisking constantly.
7. Remove from heat and gently combine the thickened juice with the cooked apples.
8. Stir in the lemon juice.
9. Cool completely before assembling pie.

Chai Spice Blend Ingredients

1 kg Ground cinnamon
1.5 kg Cardamom pods
1.0 kg Whole cloves
.6 kg Black peppercorns

*For a complete chart of baker’s percents and volumes, click here

Chai Spice Blend Method*

*Note: this will make more than needed for one pie. It is difficult to process smaller batches of the spice mix.

1. Toast the cardamom, cloves, and peppercorns in a sauté pan over medium-low heat for about 5 minutes or until fragrant, shaking the pan frequently.
2. Grind finely with a spice grinder or mortar and pestle. Sift, discarding any large particles.
3. Combine with the ground cinnamon.
4. Store tightly covered in a cool, dark, dry place for up to 6 months. (The flavor will lose intensity over time.)

Pie Assembly

1. Mound the cooled filling in an unbaked pie shell.
2. Cover with the top crust.
3. Create vents in the top dough and secure to the bottom dough with a decorative border.
4. Brush with an egg wash or cream wash, then sprinkle with sanding sugar.
5. Top with a decorative dough cutout if desired.
6. Bake for 15 minutes at 385ºF.
7. Lower the heat to 350ºF and continue baking until surface is deeply colored and fully set, 40-50 minutes more.
8. Cool fully or until warm before serving.

Next Page: Pie for Dinner? Yes Please!→



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Featured Author: San Francisco Baking Institute
The San Francisco Baking Institute (SFBI) is a world-renowned leader in artisan bread and pastry education. SFBI’s global alumni base includes thousands of professionals, culinary instructors, and home bakers. Critics hail our book, Advanced Bread and Pastry by Michael Suas and published by Cengage Learning, as the authoritative textbook in the field.