Rum-Soaked Berry Apple Pie

January 4, 2012 § 3 Comments

J: I have been on a major pie kick since Thanksgiving, and not least because I really enjoy making pie dough.  I love working with dough of all kinds — bread dough, cookie dough (duh!), pizza dough, scone dough, pie dough.  And the basic recipe for pie dough that we have been using, from the Joy of Cooking, is simple and produces consistently excellent results if you work with it correctly (more details on that later).  Once you’ve gotten this down, you don’t have to buy pie dough (or quiche dough, for that matter) ever again.  And you know how we feel here at Nombudsman about buying food that can be just as easily made at home!

Incidentally, another bonus to making pie dough is that all of a sudden you have a delicious vessel that you can put more delicious stuff in, and then bake, and then eat.  It’s kind of magical that way.

PIE

So, Erik and I were at his parents’ house this week and we decided we were going to make a dessert.  As I was on the aforementioned pie kick, it was clear what kind of dessert it would be.  The only question was what to put in the pie.  In a joint moment of genius, we hit on berries and apples, and then decided that clearly it would be in everyone’s best interest to soak the fruit in rum before we baked the pie.

That was a very, very good choice.

Without further ado:

Berry, Apple, & Rum Pie
Pie dough (use your own favorite recipe, the full recipe amounts from this [i.e., 2 c flour, 1 tsp salt…], or if you MUST, storebought — but be sure it has as few preservatives and chemicals as possible!)
3 c blueberries (we used frozen; if they’re in season, of course use fresh!)
2 apples, peeled and sliced very thinly
1/2 c raspberries (again, we used frozen)
1/3 c rum
2 tsp cinnamon (or to taste)
1/2 c sugar (this led to a pleasantly tangy, not-overly-sweet pie; feel free to add more or less depending on how sweet you like your pies)
1-2 tsp flour (optional)

Okay, now that you’ve got our ingredient list and extensive notes, here we go!

I’m starting this recipe assuming that you’ve already made your pie dough.  The most important thing to remember when making dough is to keep the butter as cold as possible.  My trick for doing this is to keep it in the fridge for as long as possible until you need it, and then cut it into quite small pieces with a knife before adding the pieces to the dry ingredients.  This results in your being able to work in the butter with your hands fairly quickly, before the butter warms up too much and loses its ability to produce lovely flaky dough.

Once your dough is finished, put it in the fridge until you need it.

Preheat your oven to 425.

Now, on to the fruit and alcohol!  If you’re using frozen berries, set them out about 30-60 minutes in advance to thaw.

Soak the berries and apples in a large bowl with the rum.  Stir to get the rum evenly distributed, and continue to stir once every 15 minutes or so for about an hour. (You could certainly do longer if you wanted.)

impromptu apple dye

Once they have been thoroughly doused, drain off all the liquid that has collected in the bottom of the bowl.  Add the cinnamon and sugar, taste, and adjust the amounts accordingly to make your pie sweeter, tangier, or more cinnamon-y.  If you choose, you can mix in some flour to try and absorb more liquid and make the pie filling a bit thicker.

Have your pie crust ready to receive the fruit.

the waiting vessel

Spoon your fruit mixture into the pie crust, spreading it around as evenly as it’ll go until it has about filled up the pie crust.

just so pretty

If you like, you can make a lattice-top for your pie using the second half of the dough, or you can just make a simple closed pie-top with some slits — your choice.  We, of course, did a lattice-top.

i'm gonna be the best grandma

Bake this beauty of a pie for 30-40 minutes, until the crust is golden-brown and the filling has started to bubble.

Serve warm, with whipped cream or ice cream, or cool, with a sprinkling of cinnamon or powdered sugar.

NOM.

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