Today is Presidents’ day, which I think is a great excuse to make a pie. Apple pie is synonymous with every patriotic American holiday, which means that it is quite a cliche and an often over done recipe. I still feel like making a pie, but I really don’t want to eat another blah apple pie.
There are lots of options for jazzing up your apple pie. Lots of recipes will zest things up with ginger, cheddar, dried cherries, caramel, etc. They are tasty but even those seem over done. So I decided to try to come up with something myself.
I thought about what kind of apple pie I did want to make and decided to try to adapt the Bourbon Glazed Pears recipe I made a few weeks ago into a pie filling. Except of course with apples. Here is what I came up with
Jon’s Bourbon Apple Pie
4 large apples (I used the Braeburn apples from my box and two Organic Granny Smith apples to add some tartness).
2 Tbsp Butter
6 Garlic Cloves
2 Tbsp Bourbon (Optional Substitution: 1Tsp vanilla extract + 2 Tsp water) (really don’t recommend substituting)
1 Cup Ricotta Cheese
1/3 Cup White Sugar
2 Tbsp Sea Salt
2 Tsp Apple Cider Vinegar
1 Dash Fresh Ground Black Pepper
1 Egg Yolk
2 Tbsp Honey
I used this crust recipe and it worked well Perfect Pie Crust.
Make your pie crust first because it needs to chill in the fridge for an hour. It is really pretty fast to make though. Preheat your oven at 425 degrees.
1. Core, slice and peel the apples, finely chop 4 garlic cloves
2. Melt butter in a frying pan on medium high heat
3. Remove pan from heat, and add bourbon or the substitute. It will pop and splash so watch out! Add garlic and return to heat.
5. Cook 1 minute
6. Add apples and cook for about 5 minutes. The apples were a lot more resilient and didn’t cook down nearly as quickly as the pears had, which is what I was hoping. I really didn’t want the apples to get soft, just to pick up the flavors of the garlic and bourbon.
7. Put the apples and all juices from the pan into a bowl. Add 2/3 cup ricotta cheese, 1 cup white sugar, 1 1/2 Tbsp sea salt, 1 Tsp apple cider vinegar, 1 dash fresh ground black pepper and mix up with your hands.
8. Roll out the bottom crust and place it in the pie pan. Place the filling in the pan and put the top crust on. Cut some holes in the top crust and brush on the egg yolk. Bake in the oven for about 30 minutes at 425 degrees.
9. Mix up 1/3 cup ricotta cheese, 2 Tbsp honey 1 Tsp apple cider vinegar and 1/2 Tbsp sea salt and place in the freezer for about an hour.
Once the pie is golden brown on the top and it smells really good in your house it’s done. Let cool for about 10 minutes. Add a dollop of your honey ricotta and enjoy. I didn’t leave my ricotta in the freezer long enough and it melted very quickly.
Overall I enjoyed it. The consistency was good. Not too soft with a pleasant crispness from the Granny Smiths. The garlic was surprising and almost distracting at first, but though I might reduce how much I use in the future, I don’t think it was too overpowering. As you might suspect, with that much ricotta this is a very rich piece of pie. It had a lot of creaminess to it but seemed to be lacking a fresh flavor. I will definitely use the recipe again but I will probably adjust the filling somewhat and I think I will add fresh crushed chocolate mint to the chilled ricotta. For all that, it was definitely different than any apple pie I’ve ever eaten and my family and friends enjoyed it as much as I did!
Hope you enjoyed your presidents’ day and a pie.