Apple pies are one of the most classic American pies out there, with a filling made up of brown sugar-sweetened tart apples and a variety of warm spices, all wrapped up in a buttery crust. Apple pies can come in other forms than just that classic double crust recipe, however, and just about all of them are covered in Apple Pie: 100 Delicious and Decidedly Different Recipes for America’s Favorite Pie. This cookbook is dedicated to apple pie and features 100 different recipes for apple pie alone. There are double crust pies, lattice crust pies, crumb-topped pies and filling combinations that you might never have thought of. It is amazing to see how many ways you can bake an apple pie, and reading through the book will definitely inspire you to bake a pie of your own.
The introduction to the book gives bakers a crash course on apple varieties. Choosing the right apple can make the difference between a so-so apple pie and a great one, and it’s very handy to have a reference that describes what sets a Braeburn apart from a Jonagold from a Northern Spy. The Northern Spy, for instance, is not easy to find in all markets and is primarily available in Michigan and New England, but is considered by many to be the best pie apple. From apples, the book moves on to 10 different types of pie crust that will suit any situation, as well as including tips on how to perfect your crust making technique. Then, the book jumps into the apple pie recipes, with fall pies, summer pies, cream pies, health(ier) pies, special occasion pies, hand pies and no-bake pies that kids will love. The recipes are clearly written with lots of detail in the instructions, especially when it comes to working with the pie pastry, and just about every ingredient used in the book should be available at most markets.
There are several illustrations in the book to guide the reader through some pie-making steps, such as assembling a lattice pie crust, but there are only a handful of photos in the center of the book. Fortunately, all of the recipes have brief descriptions that make them sound tempting even without a photo on the facing page. The best part of this book is the variety, and the most difficult part is trying to figure out which recipe to try first. Wherever you start, you’ll look at a bunch of apples a bit differently after flipping through the book because it will seem like there are a whole lot more options for them than there were before.