Posted by: thedirtybaker | June 6, 2012

One Crumb-y Post

Karen lives in Holland, whence hails the Dutch Apple Pie that this crumb topping came from.  The apple mini-pie that I had in Amsterdam last summer while waiting for rain to stop was the best apple pie (and most like mine) that I’ve ever had from a bakery or restaurant.  I assume this crumb topping is as much German as Dutch, since it’s more technically called “streusel” (pronounced “stroosel” by English speakers and “stroysl” by German speakers) (The exception is my mother, who only speaks English, but insists on pronouncing it “stroysl”).  Anyway, Karen asked me for my crumb topping recipe, so here it is. (For a picture, look at the Apple-Rine pie posting.)

As long as I”m putting up the topping recipe, here’s the basic pie crust recipe, too.

Pie crust

1 c. flour

1/2 c. chilled butter (1 stick), in smallish pieces

1/4-1/2 tsp. salt if butter is unsalted

2-4 Tbsp. ice water

Mix the flour and salt (if using) and cut in the butter with a pastry cutter (or pulse in a food processor).  When the mixture resembles a coarse meal, add 2 Tbsp ice water.  Glomp it together (my mother’s term). Add more water if needed to hold it together.  Form it into a disk and chill for 1 hour up to a few days.  Sprinkle flour on the rolling surface, roll it out, and put it in the pie pan.  Patch as needed.

Crumb Topping

3/4 c. sugar

1 c. + 2 Tbsp. flour

1/2 c. chilled butter

Sift flour and sugar together.  Who am I kidding?  Mix them together with a fork, using an upwards motion. I haven’t sifted anything since I moved out of my mother’s house. cut in butter until crumbly. You might end up using your fingers to rub it together into crumbs.

In between:

5 or 6 large, tart apples

1/2 c. sugar

1 Tbsp  cinnamon (or more)

1 tsp. nutmeg (or more)

1/4 c. cornstarch or flour

Peel, core, and slice the apples. mix dry ingredients, and then add the apples to the dry ingredients. Pour it into the pie shell (in pie pan), top with crumb topping, and bake at 400 for 30 minutes or until apples are tender and crust and crumbs are browned.  If crumbs begin to get too brown, cover with fork. This also works well with peaches, nectarines, pears, etc.  For the stone fruits, mix some ginger in with the spices, but you don’t need to peel it.

Put whatever fruity filling fits your fancy in between the crust and the crumb, and enjoy!

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