Spiced Apple-Cranberry Pie
A medley of spices gives a flavor boost to this pie, which makes a festive addition to a winter gathering.
For the dough:
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp. salt
- 2 Tbs. granulated sugar
- 16 Tbs. (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch dice
- 3 to 4 Tbs. ice water
For the apple-cranberry filling:
- 3 1/4 lb. Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and cut into slices 1/4 inch thick
- 1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1/8 tsp. ground allspice
- 1/4 tsp. ground cloves
- 1/4 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 4 tsp. cornstarch
- 1 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
- 1 Tbs. vanilla extract
- 10 oz. fresh cranberries
- 1/4 cup water
- 1 egg white, beaten with 1 tsp. water
- 2 tsp. granulated sugar
To make the dough, in a food processor, pulse together the flour, salt and granulated sugar until combined, about 5 pulses. Add the butter and process until the mixture resembles coarse meal, about 10 pulses. Add 3 Tbs. of the ice water and pulse 2 or 3 times. The dough should hold together when squeezed with your fingers but should not be sticky. If it is crumbly, add more water 1 tsp. at a time, pulsing twice after each addition. Turn the dough out onto a work surface, divide in half and shape each piece into a disk. Wrap the disks separately in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to overnight.
On a lightly floured work surface, roll out half of the dough into a 12-inch round about 1/8 inch thick. Fold the dough in half and then into quarters and transfer it to a 9-inch deep-dish pie dish. Unfold and gently press the dough into the bottom and sides of the dish. Trim the edges flush with the rim; reserve the scraps. Refrigerate the pie shell for 30 minutes.
On a large sheet of lightly floured parchment paper, roll out the remaining dough disk into a 12-inch round about 1/8 inch thick. Roll out the dough scraps and, using pie cutters, make cutouts for decorating. Refrigerate the dough round and cutouts for 30 minutes.
To make the apple-cranberry filling, in a 5 1/2-quart Dutch oven, stir together the apples, brown sugar, 1/4 cup of the granulated sugar, the cinnamon, allspice, cloves, nutmeg, salt and cornstarch until the apples are evenly coated. Set over medium heat, cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the apples are just tender but not mushy, about 20 minutes. Remove from the heat, stir in the lemon juice and vanilla, and let cool for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a saucepan, stir together the cranberries, the remaining 1/2 cup granulated sugar and the water. Set over medium-high heat and cook, stirring occasionally, until the cranberries have broken down slightly and the liquid has thickened to the consistency of a loose jam, 13 to 15 minutes. Let cool for 30 minutes. Add the cranberry mixture to the apple mixture and stir to combine.
Position a rack in the lower third of an oven, place a baking sheet on the rack and preheat the oven to 400°F.
Let the pie shell, dough round and cutouts stand at room temperature for 5 minutes. Transfer the apple-cranberry filling to the pie shell and gently place the dough round over the pie. Trim the edges flush with the rim of the dish and press the top and bottom crusts together to seal. Brush the underside of the cutouts with the egg wash and gently press them onto the top crust, decorating as desired. Brush the entire top crust with the egg wash and sprinkle with the granulated sugar.
Place the pie dish on the preheated baking sheet. Bake until the crust is crisp and golden brown, about 1 hour, covering the edges with aluminum foil if they become too dark. Transfer the pie to a wire rack and let cool for at least 1 1/2 hours before serving. Serves 8.