Apple Cider Cream Pie

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Alright, y’all – Thanksgiving is one week from today!! Are you ready? I am, but that is because I’m being super, super lazy and hedonistic about Turkey Day this year. Not only am I not hosting, I’m not even bringing anything besides wine. Admittedly, that’s not like me, but it’s all because Matt and I are on vacation as we speak, spending a week in Buenos Aires, Argentina and won’t get back until the day before T’Giving, and then we will show up to dinner jet-lagged. Matt’s family is so lucky to have us as guests. [HA!]

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But for everyone else being much more productive and responsible Thanksgiving citizens, I’ve got another pie idea for your dessert table. This is for all of you who are sick of the usual pecanpumpkin-sweet potato-apple suspects and want to shake things up a little, while still remaining true to the season and its flavors.

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Apple cider!!! It’s not just for cakes and doughnuts anymore. Once you taste your first bite, you too will conclude that it’s quite at home in a pie. That said, make sure you get a high quality cider to use here. You’re reducing it down and concentrating the flavor, not boozing it up and drinking it, so quality really matters and people will notice if you cheat. The apple cider really shines through.

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And it’s a delicious pie. Its flavor is somewhat lighter than that of pumpkin or sweet potato pies, but when it comes to warmth and earthiness, this pie can play with the big boys. The warm spices are perfectly balanced with the almost tanginess of the cider and the tart apple flavor. Your guests will go crazy for it. Enjoy!

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{One Year Ago: Cranberry Chiffon Pie, Truffle Butter Roast Turkey}
{Two Years Ago: Stuffing Bruschetta}

Source: slightly adapted from First Prize Pies by Allison Kave

Ingredients:
Pie dough for 1 (9-inch) pie
1 ½ cups cloudy, organic apple cider
4 large eggs
¾ cup granulated sugar
½ cup sour cream
¼ tsp salt
1 cup heavy cream
2 tbs confectioners’ sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon, plus extra for sprinkling

Directions:
Preheat your oven to 425 F. Grease a 9” pie plate. On a lightly floured surface, using a lightly floured rolling pin, roll out your pie dough to about 11-12 inches in diameter. Transfer the dough to your prepared pie plate. Tuck the overhang under and crimp decoratively. Let it chill in the refrigerator for 15-20 minutes. Line the bottom and sides with a piece of parchment paper and fill with pie weights or dried beans. Blind bake the crust for 20 minutes, until partially baked, then remove from the oven and set aside to cool.
While the pie crust is cooling, prepare the apple cider. Pour the apple cider into a small saucepan and boil over high heat until reduced by half, about 5 minutes. You need ¾ cup reduced cider. Let it cool completely.
When the crust and cider reduction have cooled, it’s time to actually bake your pie. Preheat your oven to 350 F. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs, granulated sugar, sour cream and salt until fully incorporated. Slowly drizzle in the reduced cider and whisk to fully incorporate.
Place the pie crust on a rimmed baking sheet. Pour the filling into the crust and bake about 50 minutes (you may need less time, so start checking earlier), until the filling has just set. The edges should be set firmly and the center should be jiggly but not liquidy. Remove the pie to a wire rack and cool completely.
Once the pie has cooled and is ready to serve, make the topping. In a large bowl, using your stand mixer, hand mixer or a whisk by hand, whip the cream with the sugar and cinnamon until stiff peaks form. Pile the cream on top of the cooled pie and sprinkle with a dash more ground cinnamon. Slice into wedges and serve.

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