Apple Pie With A Cheddar Crust


I'm really picky about my apple pie. I don't like it to be too sweet, or the apples to be too mushy. I also really love the flavor combination of salty and sweet, so that is why this not-too sweet apple pie with a cheddar cheese crust is perfect! And, if you use the right kind of apples, they won't get mushy.

Apple Pie with Cheddar Crust
Adapted from Epicurious


For pastry:
 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 pound extra-sharp Cheddar (preferably white), coarsely grated (2 1/2 cups)
1 stick cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/4 cup cold vegetable shortening (trans-fat-free), cut into 1/2-inch pieces
4 tablespoons ice water
2 tablespoons cold vodka
1 tablespoon milk

For filling:
1 1/2 pound Gala apples (3 medium)
1 1/2 pound Granny Smith apples (3 medium)
2/3 cup sugar
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon cold unsalted butter

Make pastry dough:
Stir together flour, salt, and cheese in a large bowl (or pulse in a food processor). Add butter and shortening and blend with your fingertips or a pastry blender (or pulse) just until mixture resembles coarse meal with some roughly pea-size butter lumps. Drizzle ice water and vodka evenly over mixture and gently stir with a fork (or pulse) until incorporated.

Squeeze a small handful: If dough doesn't hold together, add more ice water, 1 tablespoon at a time, stirring (or pulsing) until incorporated. Do not overwork dough or pastry will be tough.

Turn out dough onto a work surface and divide in half, then form each half into a 5-inch disk. Chill, wrapped in plastic wrap, until firm, at least 1 hour.

Make filling and bake pie:
Put a foil-lined large baking sheet in middle of oven and preheat oven to 450°F.

Peel and core apples, then slice 1/4 inch thick. (I used an apple corer/peeler/slicer, very useful!) Toss apples with sugar, flour, lemon juice, and salt until evenly coated.

Roll out 1 piece of dough (keep remaining disk chilled) on a lightly floured surface with a lightly floured rolling pin into a 13-inch round. Fit into a 9-inch pie plate. Roll out remaining piece of dough into an 11-inch round.

Transfer filling to shell. Dot with butter, then cover with pastry round. Trim edges, leaving a 1/2-inch overhang. Press edges together to seal, then fold under. Lightly brush top crust with milk, then cut 5 (1-inch-long) vents.

Bake on hot baking sheet 20 minutes. Reduce oven to 375°F and bake until crust is golden-brown and filling is bubbling, about 40 minutes more. Cool to warm or room temperature, 2 to 3 hours.


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