American As Apple Pie: Types of Apple Pies to Serve for 4th of July
The 4th of July is just a few weeks away and we’re getting pumped the way only Americans can get excited! We’re draping our houses in patriotic decor and headed to baseball games to be as American as we can be. And of course there aren’t many things as American as apple pie — and it’s at the top of our 4th of July menus. But there are a few ways you can go about making apple pie. Here’s what you have to choose from:
Double-Crust A double-crust apple pie is what we think of when we talk about the All-American Apple Pie. It is, perhaps, the most difficult type of apple pie to make. What’s complicated about it is the top crust. It tends to puff up in the oven. While the crust expands from the steam, the apples shrink as they cook and the water evaporates. One trick to solve this problem is to cook the filling in a saucepan (and let it cool) before pouring it into the bottom crust in your pie pan. The top crust should settle nicely on the cooked apples so there isn’t a big air bubble when you serve your pie.
Lattice Top A lattice top apple pie is the most elegant-looking variety of our favorite confection. Basically, you form the dough into a lattice like you’d find around the foundation of your porch. It takes a bit of time and concentration to do it well, but all it is is dough cut into strips that are woven across the top of the pie and baked. The trick to make it pretty is to make your strips of dough the same size by cutting a strip of dough and tracing the rest of your strips using the first strip as your guide. You can make a lattice with as many or as few strips as you prefer. Wide or narrow, they both make beautiful pies.
Dutch A Dutch apple pie is apple crisp inside a pie crust. It’s very difficult to mess up — place your apples (cooked or raw) along with the sugar and cornstarch into the bottom crust and top it with an oat, butter and sugar crumble topping. If you make only double-crust or lattice top pies, a Dutch apple pie might feel like cheating, but it’s just as worthy of your 4th of July table as the other pies.
Galette Apple galettes are both easy and elegant if you’re a master of making the slightly disheveled look purposely stylish. Galettes are free-form pies. The crust is laid out flat on a sheet pan — it doesn’t have to be a perfect circle — the filling is spooned into the middle (don’t pile it too high) and the edges are neatly folded in to look sort of like a fruit pizza. The result is rustic looking with the all-American flavor you expect from an apple pie.
Apple Brown Betty An apple brown betty is a cross between bread pudding and apple pie and just as tasty as both! Rather than a pie crust, you stir together cubed bread, diced apples, brown sugar, and butter. It’s a delicious dish and it doesn’t take 3 hours to make the way a double-crust pie does.
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