Down-East Cranberry Apple Pie

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Preparation info

  • Difficulty

    Medium

  • Makes one 10 inch pie; serves about

    8

Appears in

Classic Home Desserts

By Richard Sax

Published 1994

  • About

This pie, made by the Kennebunk Inn in Kennebunk, Maine, won grand prize in Yankee magazine’s Great New England Food Festival in the fall of 1989, beating out over 30 competing apple pies from inns all over New England. Bake one, and you’ll see why—this is a big pie, with a layer of orange-scented cranberries tucked beneath Cortland apple slices, all piled high in a double crust.

Ingredients

Cranberry Layer

  • 2 cups (about 7 ounces) cranberries, picked over
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ½ cup orange juice, preferably freshly squeezed
  • ½ cup water
  • Grated zest of 1 orange
  • Pinch fresh-grated nutmeg

Apple Layer

  • 8-10 Cortland apples
  • cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup sugar, or to taste
  • teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • ¾ teaspoon fresh-grated nutmeg or apple pie spice
  • Pinch salt
  • 1½-2 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • Milk and sugar, for glaze
  • Vanilla ice cream, for serving

Method

  1. Divide the dough into 2 slightly unequal portions. Roll out the larger piece on a lightly floured surface to a large circle slightly over inch thick. Fit it, without stretching, into a buttered 10-inch (or deep -inch) pie pan. Trim the edge, leaving a ¾-inch overhang. Roll out the other piece of dough to a circle ⅛ inch thick and transfer it to a foil-lined baking sheet. Chill the doughs while you prepare the fillings.
  2. CRANBERRY LAYER: Place the cranberries, sugar, orange juice, water, orange zest and nutmeg in a nonreactive saucepan. Partially cover and bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Uncover and boil gently until the mixture reduces by about ⅓, usually 20 to 25 minutes. (You should have about cups of the cranberry mixture.) Set aside to cool.
  3. APPLE LAYER: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F, with a rack in the lower third. Peel the apples, quarter, core and thinly slice into a large bowl. In a smaller bowl, stir together the flour, sugar, spices and salt with a whisk or fork until completely free of lumps. Sprinkle this mixture over the apple slices and toss until the apples are evenly coated.
  4. Moisten the edge of the bottom crust with cold water. Spoon the cranberry mixture in an even layer over the bottom of the dough. Top with the apples, mounding them in the center. Dot with the butter. Loosely drape the remaining dough over the top. Trim off the excess dough, leaving a ¾-inch overhang. Turn the edges of the top crust under the edges of the bottom crust, forming a smooth border on the rim of the pie pan. Crimp or flute the edge.
  5. Brush the dough lightly with milk. If you like, cut out leaves from the trimmings and arrange them over the top, pressing gently to make them adhere. Sprinkle the dough with sugar to glaze lightly. Cut several slashes in the top crust to release steam.
  6. Place the pie in the oven, with a sheet of foil underneath to catch any drips. Bake until the crust is golden brown and the juices are bubbling, about 50 minutes.
  7. Cool the pie on a wire rack. Serve warm, with vanilla ice cream.