December 14th, 2012

cafela: (nutmeg)
It's the holidays, and I like to bake treats for my coworkers to share on the last day before the break--ah, the joys of working in academia; we might not make much money, but we do get Christmas break!

Anyway, this year I came upon this tutorial for making apple pies shaped like roses on Pinterest, and decided I had to attempt it. I figured, worst case scenario, it doesn't work and I end up with a normal apple pie. I wanted to make some individual mini-pies for coworkers that had gifted me little presents, and one larger pie to share with everyone. So that's what I did.

The trick to the roses is that the first one is rough, and you don't want to use crisp or long apples because they break more easily. So when you buy your apples, buy short, squat ones, not tallish ones. Unless you are amazing at cutting thin slices, you'll need a mandolin slicer to get them thin enough. Also, you kind of need to hold the rose in your hand until you're done with it, so it's hard to do one that's the size of an entire normal-sized pie. It could be done, though, it would just take more work. I recommend starting with smaller, mini-pies/tarts first.

Rosy Apple Pie


2-3 red apples, not too crisp

2 tb lemon juice*

4 tb sugar*

1 tsp cinnamon*

3/4 tsp nutmeg*

**You need a mandolin-style slicer**

pie crust (whatever pie crust recipe you prefer; refrigerated dough is fine)

*I eyeballed these when I added them, so this is a guesstimate--add what seems to be right for the amount of apples you have.

Go ahead and put your pie crust in your pan (or in your mini pans). Next, wash and core your apples. Do NOT peel them! You want the red contrast of the peel so that the rose shape stands out.

To core your apples, slice them so that you get a square core. Go here to see what I mean. Stop once you reach the part where the core is removed. From that point, you'll need a mandolin to slice your apples. Very thin slices are key to being able to make the rose. Once you have your apples sliced with the mandolin, you're ready for the next step.

Dump the slices into a bowl, and add the rest of the ingredients; mix them in with your hands (to help prevent breaking the slices. Now, you get to make the rose! Start with one slice curved in on itself, forming a kind of tight circle. Then add another slice to sort of "close" that slice. Keep adding slices around and around, building by overlapping the slices you just added.

It will be tricky the first time. My second rose turned out a lot better than the first. Be sure to have good look at the first tutorial I linked to, because she has great step-by-step pictures. When you've got the rose big enough, set it into the pie pan, and add a few more slices at the edges as needed. Repeat until you've made all the pies you want to make. This recipe should net you about 4 mini pies or one large pie.

Now, keep in mind that if you messed up a bunch of your slices, it's no big deal--use them to create an edge around the rose (you'll see that's what I did with my larger pie). If you can't get the rose at all, you can still make a great apple pie by layering the slices flat in the pan, or even just dumping them in haphazardly.

Bake in the oven at 375 degrees for about 30 minutes, or until the crust is golden. Cool for about 10 minutes, then serve!

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