Pretending to be Patriotic: Traditional Apple Pie

by Maris Callahan on September 2, 2011

For some people Labor Day is a festive weekend, full of cookouts and pool parties and friends and sun and summer fun and blah blah blah blah. Well, I did the cookouts and parties and friends and blah blah blah on Memorial Day and subsequently, on the Fourth of July, so this weekend is going to be a little different.

This weekend, most of my friends are hightailing it out of town to weddings, to lake houses and to see the US Open in New York City (oh no, I’m not jealous, not one bit). The plans that I do have involve eating at restaurants, so while I’m not going to be sitting alone in the dark over here or anything,  which probably seems un-American…or something.

So, to channel my inner patriotic American on this unofficial last summer weekend, I baked apple pie. Three of them to be exact. Though I made the pies for a freelance assignment, I’m going to pretend I baked them because I love our country and wanted to honor our nation…you know…not because I’ll take any excuse to bake multiple pies.

Right now, you’re probably wondering, with all of my friends out of town and no plans to eat at home in the coming days, what I did with three pies. Well, one is heading straight for the freezer, another is coming with me tonight as a hostess gift and the third…well, I took it on a boat ride last night with four people and we ate the entire thing. With forks. It wasn’t pretty but the boat ride was:

Lake Michigan at night is surprisingly quiet and peaceful.

Now, let’s get back to the pie. My favorite type of apple pie is actually Dutch apple, sweet and tangy apple filling underneath a pile of brown sugar crumb topping. However, to help usher out the last days of summer, making a classic lattice-topped pie seemed like the right thing to do.

A lattice topping might seem intimidating, but really, lattice is a fancy way for saying “stripes” and if you watch a good tutorial before you start, you’ll be golden.

Traditional Apple Pie

What You Need:

1 recipe Pate Brisee (use or your favorite packaged crust for a 9” pie)
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1 cup sour cream
2 ½ cups chopped, peeled apples
1 cup golden raisins (optional)

How To:

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Divide your piecrust into two equal pieces (if you’re using a packaged crust they are already separated in two pieces). Line a 9” pie pan with half the all-butter piecrust, folding any excess dough over the edges of the crust. Place the remaining dough aside.

Mix sugar, flour, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg in a medium-sized mixing bowl. Stir in sour cream until fully blended. Add apples and (if desired) raisins. Toss lightly until mixture is well combined and all apples are coated in the sour cream mixture. Place mixture into the pie pan and set aside.

On a lightly floured surface, roll the remaining dough into a 10”-wide circle. Cut the dough into at least eight equal strips (you may have some dough leftover) and form a lattice, or crosshatch pattern on the top of the pie.

Bake at 400 degrees F for ten minutes. Lower the heat to 350 degrees F and continue baking for approximately 45 minutes or until apples are tender and pastry has turned golden brown. Serve warm.

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{ 55 comments… read them below or add one }

amy @ fearless homemaker September 2, 2011 at 2:08 pm

looks just lovely! hope you have a wonderful weekend – it doesn’t matter if you aren’t doing the cookouts + parties, + are opting for restaurant dinners instead – as long as you enjoy the long weekend + the last unofficial weekend of summer, you’re doing it right!

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Rachel @ Not Rachael Ray September 2, 2011 at 2:10 pm

I’m working on Labor Day, how patriotic is that? Hello time and a half pay! :)
Pie looks amazing, and the picture of the lake makes me miss home (West Michigan). Have a great weekend, Maris!

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Mal @ The Chic Geek September 2, 2011 at 2:11 pm

Yum, nothing beats apple pie!

Have a lovely weekend!

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Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga September 2, 2011 at 2:35 pm

Glad you took the boat ride and had time w/ friends last nite!

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Nicole@HeatOvenTo350 September 2, 2011 at 2:49 pm

You made one beautiful pie! Or three of them, I should say. I say you can celebrate Labor day however you want – traditional or not. Enjoy!

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Dana September 2, 2011 at 2:50 pm

That pie is beautiful, and definitely seems patriotic to me!

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Sam September 2, 2011 at 3:26 pm

I agree, Dutch apple pie is my favorite too. This looks amazing. I love the raisins added in!

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Greg September 2, 2011 at 3:34 pm

Oh sour cream. Who wants to watch stinky old tennis matches when they can have pie. This is a beauty.

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Erica September 2, 2011 at 3:34 pm

Apple pie is the ultimate patriotic food!! Looks perfect! Ive never attempted one. Enjoy the weekend

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Sue/the view from great island September 2, 2011 at 3:56 pm

Sounds like the perfect weekend to me. I’m collecting apple pie recipes for the start of apple picking season. I love the lattice because you get a hint of what’s inside.

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Bev Weidner September 2, 2011 at 3:58 pm

Absolutely gorgeous! So gorgeous that I just got a little sweaty looking at it.

Too much?

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Lydia (The Perfect Pantry) September 2, 2011 at 4:03 pm

Any holiday is a perfect time for apple pie!

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kankana September 2, 2011 at 4:17 pm

Oh my god ! three pie .. i get tired after baking just one :)
This is looking lovely and i hope you have fun over the weekend.

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Heather @girlichef September 2, 2011 at 6:26 pm

I have to admit, I’m a pretty big apple pie fan. I think that’s going to have to be my patriotic dessert contribution this weekend, as well. (With a fat slice of parmesan, of course). Have a great weekend :D

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yummychunklet September 2, 2011 at 7:54 pm

Yummy looking pie! And, what a fun Lake Michigan boat ride. It’s been awhile since I’ve done one…maybe a year?

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Sarah September 2, 2011 at 8:31 pm

Totally jealous of your lattice-top making skills. I fear the lattice. Totally. Well, here where I live, our patriotic weekend has become the getting-back-to-normal weekend instead — the Labor Day parade and 5k cancelled thanks to last weekend’s Hurricane Irene. Sigh. So, whatever. Maybe we’ll go swimming or something.

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Sophia September 2, 2011 at 10:56 pm

Haha, any excuse to bake apple pies! I think if eating out in restaurants is a great way to spend Labor Day, though. You’re helping the economy! ;-)

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Courtney September 2, 2011 at 10:57 pm

It makes me feel so much better to know that other people devour their food in one sitting with just a fork. :) We’ve been known to do that a time or two at my house. And how could you not eat that gorgeous looking pie?? I know I would not have had any self control.

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Nutmeg Nanny September 2, 2011 at 11:02 pm

What a beautiful looking pie! I’m not doing anything this weekend either. I have to work everyday. I plan on thinking about eating this pie…that’s being patriotic…right?

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NancyC September 2, 2011 at 11:23 pm

That’s a great-looking pie! I’ve think I’ve been on that boat ride before on a visit to Chicago–a great view of the city from the lake!

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In Katrina's Kitchen September 3, 2011 at 7:00 am

Pie on a boat. With a fork. Yum! Totally patriotic!!

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Emma September 3, 2011 at 7:49 am

The photo of Lake Michigan makes me long for the extra days of vacation that we didn’t get last week, as our time was cut short and we had to hustle home. We were planning to go to the UP… one of my favorite places.

I’m with ya on 3 pies vs. 1! Although I will probably only be making one today – but I’ll pile the apples really really high:)

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Vivienne September 3, 2011 at 8:14 am

haha good on you for making 3 pies…im sure the one in the freezer will be gone in no time :P the skyline is so pretty, must’ve been great experience esp with pies eaten with forks :)

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Alexandra (Veggin' Out in the Kitchen) September 3, 2011 at 8:29 am

Mmmmm!! While dutch is probably my favorite kind of apple pie too, this one looks really, really good! :) And I love how you made three – always got to have some pie on hand ;)

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Cate O'Malley September 3, 2011 at 12:14 pm

That view and apple pie amongst friends? Sounds like perfection.

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Sarah (everydaysapicnic) September 3, 2011 at 1:18 pm

The boat trip sounds fantastic – especially with the addition of apple pie :-)

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bakerbynature September 3, 2011 at 2:22 pm

Maris – your pie turned out gorgeous! I have no exciting plans this weekend, so don’t feel too jealous – I will be doing my fair share of eating alone in my tiny apartment to celebrate labor day. woo hoo.

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Melissa@IWasBornToCook September 3, 2011 at 6:50 pm

Looks delicious! I love boat rides at night. And don’t think my friends and I have never set around a pie and devoured it with forks only :) It’s the best way to eat it sometimes.

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Elle September 3, 2011 at 10:06 pm

Lovely! Absolutely beautiful and you make it sound so easy.

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Junia @ Mis Pensamientos September 3, 2011 at 10:12 pm

yay for apple pie to celebrate the weekend! hahaha i live in the NYC area and i’m not doing any of those things that u mentioned. low-key relaxing weekend since i start teaching on Monday!! have a wonderful weekend!

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Maria @ Scandifoodie September 4, 2011 at 3:04 am

It’s beautiful! Old style apple pie is always a winner :-)

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Claire @ Un Bello Aperitivo September 4, 2011 at 6:16 am

Yum…that looks as American as you can get (an probably tastes killer, too)!

The picture of the skyline is so beautiful; it’s making me miss Chicago now that I’m in Germany! :-(

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5 Star Foodie September 4, 2011 at 8:24 am

The apple pie looks excellent, perfectly seasonal treat. Hang in there!

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Heavenly Housewife September 4, 2011 at 9:56 am

That is one beautiful pie, it makes me wish we celebrated labor day here in the UK!
*kisses* HH

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Amy @ The Whole Sweet Scoop September 4, 2011 at 11:03 am

I love apple pie! I can’t believe you made 3 – that’s quite impressive! They look amazing though, you can always send an extra one this way :)

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Laura @ SweetSavoryPlanet September 4, 2011 at 11:15 am

The skyline pic makes me want to go to Chicago. Never been but intend to! I have a whole bag of Honey Crisp seconds (dings and nicks from hurricane winds that are perfectly good apples) that might just go into an all American apple pie!

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Geni September 4, 2011 at 12:33 pm

I have never attempted a lattice pie before but the tutorial should definitely help me. Maybe I’ll have to give it a shot. Your pie looks picture perfect.

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Karriann Graf September 4, 2011 at 1:00 pm

Oh this pie looks delicious and perfect for the weekend! happy Baking!

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katie @KatieDid September 4, 2011 at 3:59 pm

Hope you have a fun weekend! I’m with you in the hunkering down, not doing anything much exciting. But I’m excited to do just that!

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Nami | Just One Cookbook September 5, 2011 at 3:17 am

Our weekend is pretty low key too – just working on the house and playing with the kids – zero get together… this year. We actually like this family time. I wish I have a homemade pie to eat with my family. Apple pie is one of my favorite and only pie (dessert) that I remember my mom baked (she wasn’t a baker so I am not too…). I was smiling reading you and 3 of your friends ate the whole pie… nice!

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Joanne September 5, 2011 at 7:48 am

This definitely screams patriotism. But more than that, it screams “pull up a fork and dig in”. I hope you have a fun weekend, crazy exciting plans or not!

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Jessica B. September 5, 2011 at 9:56 am

How lucky am I to have been one of the fortunate ones who got to enjoy the apple pie that you made! Absolutely delicious! Thanks for sharing.

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Kay September 5, 2011 at 11:21 am

What a great-looking pie!

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Karen (Back Road Journal) September 5, 2011 at 3:29 pm

Sour cream apple pie is one of my favorites. Sharing pie on a boat ride sounds like fun.

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Barbara September 5, 2011 at 5:45 pm

Guess what I did this Labor Day? Cleaned house. Not very patriotic. I didn’t even bake a pie. But if I had, it would have been cherry. I love cherry pie!

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Tess September 6, 2011 at 4:36 am

Sounds like a really awesome recipe. Cinnamon goes so well with apples too.

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Candace September 6, 2011 at 9:58 am

Your pie is just beautiful and I know it was fantastic…particularly on a boat with friends that you can tear into a pie with using just forks…no plates. Love it! I have friends like that someplace…not close by anymore since I moved north though. ~sigh~ And the view??? I could look at that every night for-ever. If I invite you over for dinner, will you bring me one of those pies? I hope you have a fantastic week!

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Alana D September 6, 2011 at 11:25 am

Always feel free to send me any pies you have laying around,I’ll even come get them.LOL

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Kelly September 6, 2011 at 11:36 am

I love that you ate a pie on a boat. That sounds like a purely fantastic weekend activity. It’s shameful to admit, but I haven’t made a pie yet. I keep meaning to try!!!

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Caroline September 6, 2011 at 1:27 pm

Great job on the pie, Maris, it looks so delicious. Pie is definitely one of my many weaknesses. Wouldn’t mind a large slice right now. :) Such a pretty shot of Lake Michigan, too!

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EA-The Spicy RD September 6, 2011 at 3:37 pm

Apple pie on a boat on Lake Michigan watching the Chicago skyline sounds absolutely fabulous! I too love Dutch Apple Pie the best :-)

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Alexis @ There She Goes September 6, 2011 at 4:15 pm

u.s. open- too fun! im jealous too

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Roz September 6, 2011 at 4:40 pm

HI Maris, your pie looks REALLY good!!!! And one a boat with a fork? Where better to eat it. (on a boat with a fork sounds like the game Clue! :) ) Take care!!! Hope the week ahead is a good one.

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Susan September 6, 2011 at 5:59 pm

With two daughters that played varsity tennis in high school, I always wanted to go to the U.S. Open! Television is always the best seat in the house, though :) With a delicious pie like that and a gorgeous lake view, who needs tennis? It must have been a little cool out there though!

I can’t wait to start making pies like this with fall apples! I’m going to watch the video now.

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Courtney October 16, 2011 at 1:04 pm

I made this last week and it was perfect! A big hit with the family and our guests. Here’s the link, in case you’re interested: http://cookingmisadventures.wordpress.com/2011/10/16/my-100th-post-and-a-little-celebratory-apple-pie/

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