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September 24, 2007

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Here is testimony that the pie shown in the picture above was the best tasting and had the flakiest crust that I can remember in the past 87 years.

Truly a work of art! :D

Oh, you are so lucky to be able to get Cortland apples! Out here (Arizona) we don't get them at all; the past few years I've been making do with Cameos, which are similar to Cortlands but not the same. They're naturally sweeter, I think, and maybe a little bit more mealy, but they don't shrink up the way Granny Smiths do.

That is indeed a beautiful pie. I have a progressive apple peeler/corer/slicer from Pampered Chef that I like but it's temperamental; you have to know which apples it will deal with properly. A softish apple will just give you mush, it sounds like you discovered that yourself already.

I've never used the progressive for pie apples, though, I always thought the slices would be too thin -- looking at your pie, though, I can see that the very thin slice are the way to go. I always end up with a big, domed top crust with inches below them before you get to the apples, I think it's because the apples are shrinking way too much underneath. Maybe if I slice them more thinly there won't be such a huge differential in the amount of space they take up cooked vs uncooked.

I'm going to have to make pie now, you know. I made zucchini bread last night and it's just not the same. What better excuse for pie than the first day(s) of fall?

Thanks, Goomp. Your kind words are an inspiration to keep on bakin'. :-)

Joan: Thanks for your heartfelt tribute to the Cortland, but not to worry. If you can't go to the apple, the apple will come to you. Check out Honeycrisp, a New York State firm that will ship them anywhere in the country, including military APO addresses!

As for that crust that towers above the apples, my sis, AKA the Mother of all Pastries, suggests that dotting the pile of apples with bits of butter may prevent that. Enjoy!

What a beautiful pie. And yes, I LOVE my Williams-Sonoma pastry blender - it's a wonderful thing. I'm not dexterous enough to blend with the knives and I could never get it right with my hands.

BTW - extra pastry dough - roll it out and cut into squares, sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar and bake along with the pie. My mom used to do that when we were kids. I loved it. The extra rolling in this case doesn't do harm to the finished product.

Bake on!

Teresa -- Mmmm. My mother did something similar with cinnamon and sugar and pats of butter (I think) rolled into a log, cut into bite-sized rounds and baked along with the pie. My sister, Keeper of the Secret Recipes, still makes a batch or two during "the holidays" for Goomp. :-)

Fannie notes that "old-fashioned cooks use their fingers and work very quickly so that the shortening does not soften.

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