This apple rose pie may look fancy but it is actually quite simple. The most important part is slicing the apples. But no need to peel them! Use a combo of red and green apples to show off those beautiful colors.
Because it is open-faced, it is lighter than a traditional apple pie which makes for the perfect after-dinner dessert. Try it for Thanksgiving! There is a perfect amount of buttery and flaky crust. The crust is the perfect compliment to the sweet and citrusy apples.
For the pie crust:
- 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 2 tbsp granulated sugar
- 1 tsp salt
- 8 tbsp butter, cut into small cubes
- 8 tbsp ice cold water
- 1 beaten egg (for egg wash)
For the filling:
- 6 crisp apples, such as Granny Smith and Honeycrisps
- 3 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 2 tbsp brown sugar
- 2 tbsp flour
- 1/2 tsp lemon zest
- 2 tbsp fresh squeezed lemon juice
- In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar and salt. Using a pastry cutter, cut in the cubed butter until crumbly.
- Add the water 1 tablespoon at a time, mixing as you go, until mixture forms a ball.
- Flatten ball into a disk, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least two hours.
- Meanwhile, cut the apples in half, and then cut in half again, so you are left with 4 pieces. Slice each quarter into 1/4-inch slices. A Mandoline slicer makes this step very easy.
- Add the slices to a large bowl.
- In a small bowl, combine the cinnamon, nutmeg, sugars and flour.
- Pour the cinnamon sugar mixture over the apple slices.
- Add the lemon juice and lemon zest and toss to coat the slices.
- Allow slices to sit for at least 20 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 350° F.
- Once the dough is done chilling, roll it out on a floured surface, into a 12-13 inch wide circle.
- Line a 9-inch pie dish with the dough.
- If making the braided crust, trim off all of the excess dough. If not, only trim off some of the excess dough and then crimp the edges.
- To create the braided crust, roll out the excess dough on a floured surface into a large rectangle/oval. Cut into 6 strips, each measuring about 14-inches (length) by 1/2-inch (wide).
- Make two braids with the strips, then combine the two braids by gently pinching the end of one braid to the other.
- Brush the edge of the pie crust with the egg wash, then place the braid around the circumference.
- Brush the top of the braid with the egg wash.
- Place a layer of apple slices flat on the bottom of the pie. (This with raise the apple rose to be more level with the top of the pie. This step may be unnecessary depending on how deep your pie dish is).
- Begin arranging the remaining slices, skin side up, along the perimeter of the pie, positioning each new slice to cover about 1/2 of the previous apple slice. Make sure the slices fit snuggly so you have a dense rose at the end. Continue until you reach the center. There will be a small gap in the center. You may find the apples will start to break as you near the center. If this is the case, microwave slices for 30 seconds or until just soft enough to be able to bend.
- To create the center of the rose, take one of the thinner slices and roll it into a spiral, then roll another slice around it. Place in the center gap.
- Pour any remaining liquid from the slices over the pie.
- Loosely cover pie with aluminum foil.
- Bake for 35-40 minutes, taking the foil off half way through.
- Let cool before serving. It might look like there is a lot of liquid in the pie at first, but as the pie cools to room temperature, liquid will reduce.