I don’t feed cowboys or hungry (young) kids like Ree Drummond, aka The Pioneer Woman, nor do I live in the open countryside known as Oklahoma. Nope. I feed regular people of all ages here at my home in northern New Jersey. Still, I like a good down-home recipe. And that’s why I purchased Ree’s first cookbook, The Pioneer Woman Cooks. Gotta say, though, that I love the book as much for her photos and stories as I do for the recipes.
My family spends most Easter afternoons at my sister-in-law Cathy’s home. She’s a terrific cook who turns out to-die-for salads and sides, while her husband Joe is known for his grilling prowess, particularly with steaks (have I ever mentioned his specialty … what we call heart attack on bread?!). Easter is a celebration in more ways than one when you spend it with Cathy and Joe. For as long as I can remember, I offer to make/bring a food item or two to take a bit of pressure off the cook. Cathy always asks me to provide dessert. Over the years, I’ve made everything from decadent brownies, to berry tarts, to this year’s flat apple pies, courtesy of Pioneer Woman.
The recipe is a cinch to put together with only 7 ingredients besides the pie crust. And speaking of pie crust, Ree would be the first person to say that you can rearrange a recipe or perhaps take a well-deserved shortcut based on your personal tastes and habits. That’s why I didn’t use her pie dough recipe. Instead, I bought Pillsbury’s roll-it-out-and-bake pie dough (quite yummy). And no one was wiser (unless they are reading this blog post, I guess). The second thing I did differently was add a 1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon to the dry ingredients that you toss the apples in to coat. To me and my family an apple pie has to have some cinnamon love in it.
You can find the recipe here. And savor the photos of the finished product on the Food Network website while you’re at it because I got none for this website. I baked the pies right after church, packed them (still warm) in foil to transport them to Cathy’s and we ate the tasty treats before I snapped any photos!
Note: I will omit the white sugar from the recipe next time as my family thought the combo of white and brown sugars in the recipe overshadowed the flavor of the apples. Either that or we’re just kinda tart and bossy here in northern New Jersey and we have to make every recipe our own. Oh yes, and I would definitely add the cinnamon again. I’m spicy like that.