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Ginger Apple Crumb Pie

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Serves eight to twelve.

The crunchy ginger crumb topping on this pie provides a lovely contrast to the tender apples in the filling. As you cover the pie, keep the topping as clumpy as possible for the most satisfying texture.

For the crust
  • 5-3/4 oz. (1-1/4 cups) all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp. table salt
  • 1-1/2 oz. (3 Tbs.) cold vegetable shortening, cut into 1/2-inch dice
  • 1-1/2 oz. (3 Tbs. ) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch dice
  • 2-1/2 to 3-1/2 Tbs. very cold water
For the topping
  • 4-1/2 oz. (1 cup) all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 Tbs. firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 1-1/2 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/8 tsp. table salt
  • 1/4 lb. (1/2 cup) cold unsalted butter, cut into 8 pieces
For the filling
  • 3 lb. Braeburn or Gala apples (about 6 medium) peeled, cored, and cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices
  • 2 tsp. finely grated fresh ginger (use a rasp-style grater)
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 Tbs. all-purpose flour
  • 1 oz. (2 Tbs.) unsalted butter, cut into very small pieces
Make the crust

In a stand mixer bowl (or a large mixing bowl), whisk the flour and salt to blend. Add the shortening and butter. Starting on low speed and then shifting to medium, beat with the paddle attachment (or cut in by hand) until the largest pieces of fat are about the size of peas, 1 to 2 minutes. With the mixer running on low (or mixing by hand), sprinkle on 2-1/2 Tbs. of the water and blend until the dough just comes together into clumps; if the dough is too dry to do this, add the remaining water 1/2 Tbs. at a time. With your hands, shape the dough into a 4-inch wide disk. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

Roll out the dough between two sheets of plastic wrap. (If the dough was chilled for more than 30 minutes, you may need to let it warm up at room temperature to become pliable.) Occasionally loosen and reapply the wrap and continue rolling until you have an 11- to 12-inch round that's about 1/8 inch thick. Remove the top sheet of plastic. Turn a standard 9-inch metal or glass pie plate (1-1/4 inches deep) upside down over the center of dough. Slip your hand under the plastic and turn the pie plate right side up. Slip the dough into the pan to fit snugly and carefully remove the plastic. Trim the dough overhang to about 1/4 inch, fold it under to create a thicker edge, and flute the edge. Cover loosely with plastic and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or until ready to use.

Make the topping

In a medium bowl, combine the flour, sugar, brown sugar, ground ginger, and salt. Whisk to blend. Add the butter and work it in well with your fingers until the mixture holds together in small clumps and there are very few fine grains left in the bowl. Refrigerate until ready to use.
 

Fill, top, and bake the pie

Position an oven rack in the lower third of the oven and heat the oven to 425°F.

In a large bowl, toss the apples with the ginger, distributing the ginger as evenly as possible. Add the sugar and flour and toss to coat evenly.

Scrape the apple mixture into the shell and mound it slightly in the center. Dot with the butter. Top with the crumb topping, keeping it as clumpy (not sandy) as you can. Try to cover all the apples. If any crumbs roll off the pie, gather them up and reapply.

Put the pie on a foil-lined baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes and then reduce the heat to 375°F. Bake until the apples are tender (a skewer inserted into the center of the pie will meet slight resistance) and the juices are bubbling around the edges, another 30 to 35 minutes; if the top starts to brown too quickly after about 20 minutes, cover the pie lightly with foil. Let cool on a rack for 3 to 4 hours to let the juices set.

Make Ahead Tips

You can make the crust and topping several hours ahead and refrigerate them, covered.

nutrition information (per serving):
Size : based on twelve servings; Calories (kcal): 410; Fat (g): fat g 16; Fat Calories (kcal): 140; Saturated Fat (g): sat fat g 9; Protein (g): protein g 3; Monounsaturated Fat (g): 5; Carbohydrates (g): carbs g 67; Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 1; Sodium (mg): sodium mg 80; Cholesterol (mg): cholesterol mg 35; Fiber (g): fiber g 5;

Photo: Scott Phillips

Really easy and so delicious! I usually make my apple pie with lemon, but alas, I had none, but I did have fresh ginger. This is a new family favorite!

Love this pie! It has become a thanksgiving tradition for my daughter and I. We enjoy making it every year or for special occasions. The ginger is the trick to this recipe. Delicious!

At first I wondered where the cinnamon was, but by the end of the first piece I was hooked. Nice nuance to a wonderful pie. I made it with all gluten-free ingredients.

At first I wondered where the cinnamon was, but by the end of the first piece I was hooked. Nice nuance to a wonderful pie. I made it with all gluten-free ingredients.

I made this pie last year when the recipe came out and it was love at first bite! I love all the usual spices for apple pie, but the simple blend of ginger and the sweetness of the apples is a clean, mouthwatering combination. I have made this pie with good results using a variety of apples, except for Granny Smiths-they're too tart and fight with the ginger in my opinion. Anyone who loves shortbread will adore the topping; and following the topping directions will garner you lipsmacking, tender/crunchy results. I learned how to make good streusel topping from these directions and now apply the same technique to other like topped recipies. This has become a family favorite. Thanks Wendy and Fine Cooking!

I first made this recipe after seeing it in your magazine and it was a hit with everyone who ate it. It has now become the most requested apple pie of the holiday season. The ginger really brightens the taste of the apples and it is a nice change from traditional apple pies. Excellent and delicious, easy to follow!

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