It doesn't feel at all like autumn, even though there are already apples and pears at the green market. The days are still hot and humid, and it's all too tempting to flick on the air conditioning and pretend that it isn't boiling outside. I am right in the middle of a bunch of travel (we leave for the Saveur awards TODAY and I am v nervous but also v excited! You can follow along on stories!), so hopefully once we make it back it will be well and truly warm clothes weather.
I head to San Fran the day after getting back from the blog awards, and then we are going to PARIS!! I am in the middle of an epic planning list, and spend my free time reading up on other bloggers who have been there, just to plan out the list of the eats. I can't wait! We used to travel heaps when I was little, but it was mainly to Canada. Europe is crazy far from New Zealand, so we are going to hopefully make the most of living on this side of the world and visit as many places as we can while we live here!
I'm just going to pretend that it's sweater weather though, because there is pie to be made! I riffed on the traditional salted caramel apple pie, by adding a little miso to the caramel. The first time I made it was when Jill and I made Claudia's miso butterscotch sauce to add to something that we were making. I was super on the fence about adding miso to caramel, but we found ourselves standing over the stove, eating it by the spoonful. The miso adds an amazing umami flavour to the caramel, which cuts through the sweetness perfectly. It goes amazingly with the apples - this is probably one of my favourite pies to date.
A few wee notes:
Both the pie dough and the caramel can be prepared the day before you make the pie - the dough is best if you can give it an overnight rest.
Have everything all ready to go when you make the caramel, because things move quickly.
I added a braided border to the pie, and covered up the little joins by using stamp cut-outs, which are my fave way to fancy up a pie with very little effort.
Miso Caramel Apple Pie
- Makes one 9 inch pie -
Pie crust recipe from four and twenty blackbirds
2 1/2 cups (310g) Flour
Pinch of Salt
2 tsp (8g) sugar
2 sticks (226g) cold unsalted butter, cut into cubes
1 cup (240ml) cold water
1 cup ice
1/4 cup (60ml) Apple cider vinegar
1 ½ cups (300g) Sugar
9 Tbsp (135g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
¾ cup (180ml) heavy cream
3 Tbsp white Miso
1 tsp flaky sea salt
1.2kg (2.6lbs) apples, peeled and finely sliced
Juice of 2 lemons
¼ (38g) cup flour
½ cup (50g) raw sugar
Egg wash - 1 egg whisked with 1 Tbsp water
- PROCESS -
Place flour, sugar and salt into a large bowl. Cut butter into chunks, and add to the flour. Toss lightly to coat. Working quickly, using a pastry blender or your fingers, cut the butter into the flour mixture until there are only pea-sized chunks left. You want a few lumps of butter remaining to keep the pastry nice and tender.
Combine ice, water and cider vinegar in a bowl. Sprinkle a few tablespoons of the ice water into the flour and butter mixture, and using a stiff spatula or your hands, mix in well. Continue adding water a tablespoon at a time ( I normally need about 8-10 tbsp) until you have a dough that holds together well, but is not too wet. Squeeze together with your fingertips to make a homogenous dough. Shape into two discs, one slightly larger than the other, and wrap in plastic wrap. Rest in the fridge for at least two hours, or preferably overnight.
Place the sugar in a medium sized heavy bottom saucepan. Place the cream and the miso in a small pan, and whisk together well. Heat until warmed, then keep on a very low heat until needed. Heat the sugar on medium, stirring constantly. The sugar will start to form clumps, then begin to melt. Cook until is it amber in colour, then remove from the heat and immediately add all of the butter. Be careful as the caramel will bubble rapidly. Once the butter is incorporated, add the cream and stir well. Stir in the salt, and pour into a glass jar. Allow to cool completely.
PIE ASSEMBLY AND FILLING
On a lightly floured surface, roll the smaller disc into a circle slightly larger than your pie dish. You want it to be approximately 1/8 inch (3mm) in thickness. Line a 9" pie dish, leaving the extra dough overhanging. Trim the dough so there is about 1 inch overlapping the edge of your dish. Place in the fridge while you prepare the filling and lattice.
Roll out the second, larger disc of dough into a rough rectangle approximately 1/8 inch thick. Use a pastry cutter to cut strips approximately 3/4 inch wide - these will be used for your lattice. Roll out scraps into a long segment, and cut thin strips using a pastry cutter. Braid the strips into 3 strand braids, to use for the border of the pie. Store the strips and braids on a baking sheet in the fridge until ready to use.
In a large bowl, toss together the apple and lemon juice. Leave to sit for 5 minutes, then drain any excess liquid. Add the flour and the sugar, and toss well to combine. Transfer the filling to the lined pie dish, packing the slices of apple in tightly, and mounding in the middle. Pour over most of the miso caramel, reserving about 1/4 cup for serving.
Arrange the strips of pie dough on the top of the pie, weaving a simple lattice. The Lattice that I did on this pie is the same concept, but you place the first line of strips horizontally, then weave in the other line of strips at a 45˚ angle. (Instead of perpendicular like a regular lattice). Trim any overlapping pie dough and lattice strips so that they are flush with the edge of the pie dish. If you are adding a braid border, brush a little egg wash then place on the braid. I used a couple of cut out pie stamp shapes to cover the joins.
Rest the pie in the fridge for at least 30 minutes. While the pie is resting in the fridge, preheat the oven to 425˚f/ 220˚c. Place a baking tray on the bottom rack of the oven.
Brush the pie with egg wash, and sprinkle liberally with raw sugar. Bake at 425˚f / 220˚c for 20 minutes, or until the pastry is set and beginning to go golden. Reduce the temperature 375˚f / 190˚c, and bake until the pastry is deeply golden and the filling is bubbling.
Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack. Serve warm or at room temperature, with the extra miso caramel.