• Apple Crumb Pie

    DSC_0296

    If you like apple pie and if you like crumb topping, you’ll love this apple crumb pie!  This pie will have its place at our Thanksgiving feasts.

    Recipe adapted from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe.

    Ingredients:

    • 1/2 recipe of No Fail Pie Crust (or make a full recipe and make tarts with the leftover crust….yum!)
    • 6 c. apples (Fuji, Jazz, Braeburn, Granny Smith mix), sliced ¼ inch thick
    • 1/4 c. freshly squeezed lemon juice (from about 2 lemons)
    • 3/4 c. granulated sugar
    • 2 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon

    Crumb Topping:

    • 1 c. all-purpose flour
    • 1/4 c. packed light or dark brown sugar
    • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
    • 8 TBSP (1 stick) cold butter, cut into small pieces

    Directions:

    1. Make the pie crust according to directions, roll it out into a 9-inch pie plate and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before filling with the apples.
    2. Preheat the oven to 375*. Peel, core and slice all the apples to about 1/4-inch thick. It doesn’t have to be exact – just try to get them all about the same thickness so the apples cook evenly.
    3. Toss the apples in a bowl with the lemon juice, sugar, and cinnamon. Add the apple mixture to the chilled crust.
    4. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, and cinnamon. Add the butter pieces and cut in with a fork, your fingers or a pastry blender until the mixture is coarsely combined and makes a streusel-like consistency.
    5. Lightly press the crumb mixture on top of the apples. Place the pie on a foil-lined baking sheet and bake for 1 hour and 30 minutes until the apples are tender and the crust is golden brown. If the crust edges are getting too dark during the last 30 minutes of baking, you can cover them with foil for the remainder of baking.
    6. Serve warm or at room temperature. This pie is delicious with a bit of whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.

    Apple Crumb Pie:

    5star

  • Apple Pie Perfection!

    DSC_0309

    Apple pie…just like Grandma’s…I just love apple pie!  The search is over…this is the best apple pie!

    Ingredients:

    • No Fail Pie Crust
    • 6-8 c. apples (Fuji, Jazz, Braeburn, Granny Smith mix), sliced ¼ inch thick
    • ¾ c. sugar
    • 3 TBSP all purpose flour
    • 1 TBSP fresh lemon juice
    • ½ tsp. cinnamon
    • 1/8 tsp. salt
    • 1 TBSP butter, cut into small pieces
    • 2 tsp. sugar
    • 1/8 tsp. cinnamon

    Directions:

    1. Preheat oven to 425*.
    2. Combine apples through salt in a large bowl.  Let stand for at least 15 minutes, stirring several times, so the apples soften slightly.
    3. Pour mixture into the bottom of the crust and gently level with the back of a spoon.
    4. Top with butter.
    5. Brush the overhanging edge of the bottom crust with cold water.  Cover with the top crust, then seal the edge, trim, and crimp or flute.  Cut steam vents in the top crust and sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon.
    6. Bake for 30 minutes with a baking sheet underneath.  After 30 minutes, reduce temperature and bake until fruit feels just tender when a knife is poked through the vents, about 30 to 45 more minutes.  For the filling to thicken, the pie must cook on a rack for 3 to 4 hours.

    Apple Pie:

    5star

  • Perfect Pie Crust

    DSC_0302

    In my opinion, my Grandmother makes the best pies in the whole wide world…I’m not kidding!  Her crust is flaky and buttery and delicious.  I’ve seen her make pies, so I’ve always had an idea of what goes into it, but I never could get it just right, because in true Grandma form, she has no recipe…she makes it by feel.

    This is the perfect pie crust.  I. am. not. kidding.  It’s just like Grandma’s.

    Recipe from the November 2012 issue of Food Network Magazine.

    Ingredients:

    • 12 TBSP very cold unsalted butter (1 1/2 sticks)
    • 3 c. all-purpose flour
    • 1 TBSP sugar
    • 1 tsp. salt
    • 1/3 c. very cold vegetable shortening
    • 1/2 c. ice water

    Directions:

    1. Cut the butter in 1/2 inch dice and return it to the refrigerator while you prepare the flour mixture.
    2. Place the flour, sugar and salt in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade and pulse a few times to mix
    3. Add the butter and shortening.  Pulse 8 to 12 times, until the butter is the size of peas.  With the machine running, pour ice water down the feed tube and pulse the machine until the dough begins to form a ball.
    4. Dump onto a floured board and roll into a ball.  Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes (if refrigerate longer be sure to let it warm up a bit before you try and roll the dough out).
    5. Cut the dough in half.  Roll each piece on a well floured board into a circle at least 1 inch larger than the pie pan, rolling from the center to the edge, turning and flouring the dough so it doesn’t stick to the board. You should see bits of butter int he dough.  Fold the dough in half, ease it into the pie pan without stretching at all an unfold to fit the pan.
    6. With a small paring knife, cut the dough 1 inch larger around the pan.  Fold the ed under and crimp the edge with either your fingers or the tines of a fork.
    7. Makes 2 (9-11 inch) crusts.

    Perfect Pie Crust:

    5star

     

  • Crockpot Steak and Black Bean Chili

    DSC_0301

    Oh how we love this chili, and by we I mean all 4 of us!  Even the pickiest, who generally won’t eat chili, ate this up (granted she just ate the big chunks of steak, but at least she ate it rather than turning her nose up)!

    This is a true Crockpot chili, and I love that this dish actually cooks all day.  Start it in the morning and 8-10 hours later, dinner is ready!  Definitely can’t beat that for a busy weeknight delicious and hearty dinner.

    Serve with Grandma Clark’s cornbread.

    Ingredients:

    • 2 lbs. boneless beef cubes, for stew
    • 2 heaping tsp. chili powder
    • 1 heaping tsp. garlic powder
    • 1 heaping tsp. ground cumin
    • 1 large onion, chopped
    • 1 large green pepper, chopped
    • 2 (15 oz.) cans black beans
    • 2 (14 1/2 oz.) cans chili-style chopped tomatoes
    • 1 tsp. sugar
    • 1 (6 oz.) cans tomato paste
    • salt and pepper, to taste
    • sour cream
    • shredded cheddar cheese

    Directions:

    1. Cut the beef into 1-inch cubes.
    2. Place beef in slow cooker and turn it on low.
    3. Sprinkle the chili powder, garlic powder and cumin over the meat.
    4. Add onion and green pepper.
    5. Drain and rinse the cans of beans and add them to the slow cooker.
    6. Add tomatoes and sugar.
    7. Cover and cook on low for 8 to 10 hours.
    8. Uncover and sir in the tomato paste.
    9. Season with salt and pepper
    10. Garnish with sour cream and cheddar cheese

    Crockpot Steak and Black Bean Chili:

    5star

  • Crockpot Applesauce

    DSC_0289

    Homemade applesauce makes the house smell like fall, and it is so easy and so delicious! :)   The kiddos devoured their applesauce, and we’ll definitely make this up again.

    Ingredients:

    • 10 Braeburn apples, peeled, cored and sliced
    • 1/2 c. sugar + more as needed
    • 1/2 c. water
    • 1 tsp. cinnamon

    Directions:

    1. Place apple slices in food processor in batches and process until the apples are in small pieces (or use your peeler, corer, slicer handy appliance); then put apples in Crockpot.
    2. Add sugar, water and cinnamon.
    3. Cover and cook on HIGH for 4 hours or LOW for 8 hours.  Taste and add more sugar, if needed. (if you use your peeler, corer, slicer handy appliance, take a potato masher to mash the top layer of apples as the under the layers will have already broken apart).

    Crockpot Applesauce:

    5star