Czech Apple Pie
It’s like American apple pie except not at all. Give it a try and see for yourself.
WHAT YOU NEED
500 g of all-purpose flour
200 g of butter, at room temperature
200 g of granulated white sugar
2 teaspoons of baking powder
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
zest of one lemon
milk to adjust consistency of the dough
4 green apples (Granny Smith apples work great), grated
2 tablespoons of white sugar
2 teaspoons of ground cinnamon
optional: rum-soaked raisins
HOW TO DO IT
Make the dough by mixing all of the ingredients and kneading it until it becomes a cohesive. Depending on the consistency of the dough, add flour or milk to achieve the texture of smooth dough.
Wrap the dough and rest it in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
While the dough is resting, preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
If you are using raisins, soak them in boiling water for a few minutes to plump them up a little (they always look so sad in the bag) and optionally soak them in dark rum for a little extra flavor. Don’t worry, there is not any alcohol left after baking, it’s just for a little extra deliciousness.
If you haven’t already, grate your apples, so that everything is ready.
When the dough is rested, cut it in half, and roll each half to the size of your baking sheet. This amount of dough should be enough for a half sheet pan. Once your roll out the first half of dough, transfer it to a parchment/silpat lined or a lightly greased baking sheet.
Top with grated apples, raisins, and sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon. This is up to you – if you like it sweeter, add more sugar. If you like it tarter, add less.
Carefully top with the second part of the dough and seal around the edges so that there is no leakage during baking.
Prick the top all over with a fork to allow steam to escape during baking.
Paint with a well beaten egg (no wispy/stringy part left) to ensure a perfect golden brown color.
Bake in the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes (keep your eye on it after 25) until it’s beautifully golden brown.
Let cool and devour!
I’ve got another recipe from the Motherland for you today. The hardest thing about is was to come up with an appropriate name. If I were to use the Czech name, it would be “Apple Cuts” which does not sound appealing at all. I opted for “Apple Pie” even though I am sure most Americans would definitely not call it that. Regardless of the name, you should try it because it’s absolutely delicious. It’s a classic Czech pastry with super tasty dough that is soft, sweet, and has that lovely hint of lemon in it. You’d be surprised the wonders that a little extra bit of something can do – in this case the lemon zest. This recipe is straight forward even though it does require a little bit of love when making the dough. But it’s not too bad and you will be rewarded with a delicious treat. I also include the rum-soaked raisins because they add an extra layer of flavor. There is a famous rum in the Czech Republic that is probably used for baking much more than drinking. It has a very strong sweet aroma that people have come to love in frostings, doughs, and other baked goodies. Obviously you won’t find the Czech rum here, so either use a spiced rum or you can skip the rum-soaking. This recipe reminds me of being a small boy in the Czech Republic and it holds a special place in my heart. I hope you try it!