The 4th of July is just a few weeks away. It’s one of my favorite holidays – not so much for the fireworks, but because I know that it will stop raining on July 5th. Ah, summer in Seattle.
In anticipation of our rainy backyard BBQ, I’ve been working on some fun summer desserts. The 4th of July is all about independence, and what better way to celebrate the 4th than with your own individual apple pie?
My first attempt at making this recipe was a partial success. The crust turned out perfect (Pillsbury, you never let me down), but the filling was not so great. Fortunately, my mom was in town this week for a taste test and to give her opinion.
My mom makes the best apple pie.
If you’ve never tasted Helen’s pies, you might not believe me, but seriously her apple pie is amazing. She can make a pie anywhere. Without a recipe.
I have seen her get started at 10 o’clock at night, sometimes in her pajamas, and possibly after a few glasses of wine… she’ll make this amazingly big batch of crust and then get three or four apple pies in the oven just like it was nothing. These are the pies that people RAVE about.
Joy’s husband, Toby, thinks my mom’s pies are the best apple pies in the world.
So I was glad to get her opinion.
Mom, what do you think of my cute mini-apple pies?
Hmmm… what kind of apples did you use??
Well, Mary, I think that’s a problem. I personally don’t like Granny Smiths for apple pie. They don’t cook down enough. Try using Golden Delicious apples. And, I think you need to add some more spice.
Okay… so I don’t always follow my mom’s advice, but when it comes to pie, I listen. So I made the mini apple pies again – this time with Golden Delicious apples (when is the last time you bought a Golden Delicious?) and more cinnamon, plus nutmeg and allspice.
Mom was right. Since the mini-apple pies cook faster than a regular pie, you really do need an apple that cooks faster, too. The Pillsbury pie crust is flakey and delicious, and it makes this project so easy! The pies pop right out of the muffin pans. I will be serving these on the 4th with ice-cream and caramel sauce. Yum!
- 1 box refrigerated pie dough (2 pieces)
- 5 Yellow Delicious apples
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 2 Tbsp. all purpose flour, plus additional for dusting
- 2 tsp. cinnamon
- ¼ tsp. nutmeg
- ¼ tsp. allspice
- 2 Tbsp. butter
- CRUMB TOPPING:
- ½ cup all purpose flour
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- 4 Tbsp. cold butter, cut into small pieces
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- THE CRUST:
- Unroll the refrigerated pie dough onto a clean board, lightly dusted with flour.
- Use a 4″ biscuit cutter (you can also use a glass or a bowl, approximately 4″ in diameter) to cut out 6 pie crusts from each piece of dough. Note: cut out four pieces from each piece of dough first, then re-roll the dough to cut out the remaining 4 pieces.
- Place a piece of dough in each muffin cup, gently pressing it to the bottom and sides.
- Place the muffin pan in the refrigerator while you prepare the filling and crumb topping.
- THE FILLING:
- Peel and core the apples and cut them into ½″ pieces.
- Combine the apples, granulated sugar, flour, cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice in a medium bowl and gently toss to combine.
- THE CRUMB TOPPING:
- Combine the flour, granulated sugar, brown sugar, and cinnamon in a medium bowl. Add the butter, and cut it into the flour mixture with a pastry cutter, a fork, or your fingers, until the mixture resembles small crumbs.
- ASSEMBLE THE PIES:
- Divide the apple mixture between the 12 pies, filling each all the way to the top of the cup. Sprinkle each pie generously with the crumb topping. Bake the pies at 350 degrees for 25 minutes until the crumb topping and crust are brown and the apple filling is bubbly.
- Let the pies cool completely, then gently remove from the muffin pan.
- Serve the pies at room temperature, or reheat them on a baking sheet before serving.
- Pies can be refrigerated for 3 days, or wrapped tightly and frozen for up to 1 month.