Over the Christmas holidays, while we were having Christmas lunch with my mom, we talked about (what else?) Christmas baking! It cropped up because I gave my godmother (who joined our Christmas lunch) fruitcake – my mom’s recipe (slightly adapted for my personal taste, of course) so then naturally my mom asked if I had successfully made her apple pie (she wanted to taste it again but did not want to make it).
I had to admit that while I was successful with her apple filling and the pie topping, I kept getting the bottom crust wrong. She then told me that the bottom crust was not important, so I could use whatever bottom crust recipe I wanted (or was comfortable with) because her secret was, first and foremost, the filling, followed by the topping. The crust, she said, was some recipe she picked up somewhere and was really nothing special.
I am still chicken to make it. I did have moderate success a while back doing just what she suggested – generic crust for the bottom. But they were mini pies (baked in cupcake tins) and when I tried to make them in a proper pie pan… alas, same deal as before – nice filling and nice topping but blah bottom crust!
So, even if we have apples in abundance for the Christmas season, I am, yet again, still chicken to try mommy’s apple pie!
Instead I made her filling and topped it with my own oat-crisp mixture! And to make it extra special, I served it with vanilla ice cream (store bought) and homemade Brandy Caramel Sauce…
Personally I am happy with this Apple Crisp and would be just as happy to skip the apple pie altogether if only it were not an heirloom recipe as my mom claims it to be. (So as you can guess by now, my only interest in successfully making the apple pie is for my mom – for her to taste it once again, as well as to keep it alive for the next generation!)