Apple Pie Cheddar Crust

It’s only fitting that today, on “Pi Day” (3/14), we post a classic recipe: Cheddar-Crust Apple Pie from Martha Stewart’s New Pies and Tarts (Clarkson Potter, 2011). For some people, apple pie just isn’t the same without a slice of cheddar cheese melted on top or served on the side. This recipe does that custom one better by mixing the cheese right into the crust, so you can enjoy the combination of flavors in every bite. Enjoy!

Cheddar-Crust Apple Pie
Recipe from Martha Stewart’s New Pies and Tarts

Makes one 9-inch pie

¼ cup all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
Pâte Brisée, Cheddar Variation (recipe follows)
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
4 pounds tart, firm apples, such as Granny Smith
¾ cup sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon salt

1. On a lightly floured surface, roll each disk of dough to a 13-inch round, 1/8 inch thick. Transfer 1 round to a parchment-lined rimmed baking sheet for top crust; refrigerate. Fit second round into a 9-inch pie plate for bottom crust. Trim dough, leaving a 1-inch overhang.

2. Place lemon juice in a large bowl. Peel, quarter, and core apples; thinly slice, tossing into bowl with lemon juice as you work. Add flour, sugar, cinnamon, and salt; toss to combine.

3. Fill bottom crust with apple mixture, piling high in center; lightly brush edge of crust with water. Place top crust over filling; press all around edge to seal with bottom crust. Using kitchen shears, trim to a 1-inch overhang; fold under to form edge, and press to seal. Using thumb and forefinger, crimp dough along rim. With a paring knife, cut 5 small slits in center of pie to let steam escape.

4. Preheat oven to 425°F, with rack in lowest position. Place pie plate on a parchment-lined rimmed baking sheet. Bake 20 minutes; reduce heat to 375°F, and bake until crust is golden brown and juices are bubbling, 60 to 70 minutes more. (If edge browns too quickly, tent pie with foil.) Let pie cool completely on a wire rack, at least 4 hours or up to overnight, before serving.

Pâte Brisée
Makes enough for one 9-inch double-crust pie or two 9-inch single-crust pies

2½ cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
¼ to ½ cup ice water

1. Pulse flour, salt, and sugar in a food processor (or whisk together by hand in a bowl). Add butter, and pulse (or quickly cut in with a pastry blender or your fingertips) until mixture resembles coarse meal, with some larger pieces remaining. Drizzle ¼ cup water over mixture. Pulse (or mix with a fork) until mixture just begins to hold together. If dough is too dry, add ¼ cup more water, 1 tablespoon at a time, and pulse (or mix with a fork).

2. Divide dough in half onto two pieces of plastic wrap. Gather into two balls, wrap loosely in plastic, and press each into a disk using a rolling pin. Refrigerate until firm, well wrapped in plastic, 1 hour or up to 1 day. (Dough can be frozen up to 3 months; thaw in refrigerator before using.)

Cheddar Variation: Reduce butter to ¾ cup (1½ sticks) and add 1½ cups shredded sharp cheddar to the flour mixture along with the butter. Increase sugar to 1 tablespoon.