Sunday, October 25, 2009

Apple Pie Bake-Off 2009

I won again. I don't think I'm going to be invited next year! The first year I made a very traditional pie. It had boiled cider in the filling and maybe in the crust, so it was quite good. Last year I made a pie with cheddar cheese in the crust. This year, I decided to make something completely different - so different that I thought I might have been disqualified. I made a candy apple pie. I found the recipe online, it won Apartment Therapy's best pie contest last year. It's insanely sweet - my teeth still ache. It began with a graham cracker crust. Once the crust cooled, I smothered it with caramel and chopped pecans. I cooked the Granny Smith apples in butter, sugar, and cinnamon. Once they had reduced, I poured them into the crust. The final layer was a thin cheesecake layer. The original recipe calls for a layer of whipped cream and then more caramel & chopped pecans. I decided that whipped cream would have been overkill, so I drizzled more caramel on the top and decorated the whole thing with whole pecan halves. It was good, but VERY sweet. The other contenders were fantastic as well. One was a French apple tart, another a pie with raisins and almonds, and another a very good traditional pie with a soft crust.

Here's my pie pre-carnage. The caramel dripped down the sides in transit, and I see that the pecans aren't where they were originally obsessively placed:

Here are all four contestants:

Here's my pie stratigraphy:

And because we hadn't had enough sugar, here's a lovely rootbeer float:

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