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I did it. I faced my biggest kitchen fear. Cast iron.
With the 4th of July coming up, I have been thinking of all food "All American". Burgers, fries and apple pies. OK ,so the song says Cherry but, I think APPLE. I also think of fireworks, one of my favorite things EVER, but that has nothing to do with cooking, so I will refrain from going into how much I love them! Let me tell you how I came to apple pies and......cast. iron.
I was at my moms last week, and told her of my plan to do this recipe. She ran, OK wait. She chop, chop, chopped behind her walker to the kitchen. I heard the clanging of pots and pans, a sound from my childhood I am still in therapy over! As my ears were screaming for some reprieve it suddenly stopped. I hear the wheels of her walker, and here she comes, with a cast iron skillet in hand. "Here! Here! This was my moms, you can have it, and use it and make your pie in it" Ahh, mooommmm, really? But I am terrified of cast iron. She looked at me as if to say, "you are far dumber than I thought". "AFRAID?" I said, they gross me out. You can't wash them and I don't want remnants from last weeks dinner in tonight's dish and all that kind of gross stuff. She said, as only she can, making my one syllable name into 3, "Caaaa-hriissss, you are ridiculous". Oh no she didn't. Oh, yes she did. So I smiled, took the skillet and spend all night researching how to care for, and clean this baby.
I am happy to report, I have used it 2 times. I just looks at me sometimes, as if it knows how intimidating it is, and how much I am on the fence about my relationship with it. It knows how it took care of my pie, how unbelieveably amazing it was, and it taunts me with that fact. And if you wondered, yes, I HAVE had my meds today. HA!
2 pie crusts (I cheated and bought mine rolled in the fridge section)
5-6 large apples (peeled and sliced) apple variety is up to you, I used Gala
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp cinnamon
3/4 cup caramel sauce
9-12 inch cast iron skillet
1 egg (beaten with a splash of water for the top of the pie)
Sprinkles or Sugar (optional)
If your skillet is well seasoned there is no need to grease it or use butter, if it isn't, rub it with 1 tbsp of vegetable oil.
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
I used a 9 inch skillet, but if yours is a bit bigger simply use your rolling pin and on a flour surface roll your crust out a little thinner, no biggie at all. When you have it to the proper size, place it in your cast iron skillet. Making sure it goes up the sides as well. Dont' stretch it, just place it down into the skillet carefully and get it all the way to the bottom edges!!
In a large bowl mix together apples, brown sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, and caramel sauce. Mix until the apples are coated and it is mixed well. Carefully pour into your bottom crust, it will seem like to much but trust me, it will be fine! Even out the filling and prepare your top crust. (rolling out to make bigger if needed) You will also need to use a small cookie cutter to cut out any shapes if you want at this time instead of cutting vents. If you want to just slit some vents on top that is fine as well. I used a star cookie butter to cut out a star. I did cut a few vents as well. Now place on top of the pie and careful "fold" the top crust under trying to catch the bottom crust to be able to pinch them together a little bit. This isn't the end of the world if you just fold the top crust under either. Trust me, nobody is gonna care when they dig into this dream!!
Brush the crust lightly with eggs wash and sprinkle on some granulated sugar or sprinkles or both! Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown. If you think the edges are getting to brown, simple cover the edges with strips of foil!
I let mine cool 1 hour before serving. Heavenly! I think it is so cool to have a family pot. It is the first kitchen thing I have gotten that was passed down. So cool, thanks Ma!
NOW...........(tongue drum roll please)
Since I faced my cast iron fear, I wanted to share with you all! The kind folks at Lodge Cast Iron Company are giving one of you a 10.5 inch cast iron Chefs Skillet! ACCKK!!! It is true!
The form to enter is pretty self exclamatory. You have a bazillion ways to enter. You MUST follow Lodge Cast Iron and FoodThoughtsOfaChefWannabe on Facebook or here on my blog directly. You have other entry options but those are mandatory! Good luck and make sure to get entered and share with your friends! You can make this pie in yours even!
DISCLAIMER: You WILL need to email me with your address AND phone number if you win. This will not be shared with anyone but Lodge Cast Iron so they can ship your prize. Just in case that makes you uncomfortable I wanted to let you know. This is open to the lower 48 states only.
Your "no longer intimidated by cast iron" Chefwannabe