Classic Apple Pie


1 cup vegetable shortening
1/2 cup boiling water
1 tsp salt
3 cups sifted all-purpose flour


1/4 cup sugar
1 tbsp all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/8 tsp salt
1 tbsp grated lemon rind
5 cups Washington State apple slices
1 tbsp lemon juice
2 tbsp butter or margarine


  1. To make the short pastry, preheat oven to 425ºF.
  2. Cream the shortening with boiling water until well mixed, either by hand or with an electric mixer.
  3. Add the salt and flour all at once and stir until thoroughly mixed.
  4. Form into a ball and chill in a covered container for at least an hour. Roll out half the dough for a single shell. Fit into a pie pan and then prick generously with a fork around edges and on bottom. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes for a single crust. Dough may be kept for at least 3 weeks in the refrigerator. Makes pastry for two 9-inch pie crusts.
  5. Preheat oven to 425ºF.
  6. Roll out half the pastry and line a 9-inch pie plate.
  7. Combine the sugar, flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and lemon rind in a bowl. Add the apples and toss to coat evenly.
  8. Arrange the apples in the pastry-lined pie plate. Sprinkle with lemon juice and dot with butter.
  9. Roll out the remaining pastry and place over the apples. Cut air vents in the top. Trim the pastry and flute the edge, trimming any excess pastry.
  10. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes or until the crust is golden brown.

Makes 1 pie.

Source: The Creative Cooking Course

Dried Cherry Cheesecake Muffins


5-1/2 oz butter, plus extra for greasing
scant 1 cup cream cheese
generous 3/4 cup superfine sugar
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
2 cups self-rising flour
generous 1/2 cup dried cherries, chopped
confectioners’ sugar, for dusting


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F/180°C. Grease a deep 12-cup muffin pan.
  2. Melt the butter and let cool slightly. In a large bowl, whisk the cream cheese and sugar together, add the eggs one at a time until well combined, and then stir in the melted butter.
  3. Mix the flour and cherries together in a bowl, then stir gently into the batter. Spoon into the prepared muffin pan, filling each hole to about two-thirds full, and bake for 12-15 minutes, or until golden brown.
  4. Remove from the oven and let cool on a wire rack. Eat warm or cold, dusted lightly with confectioners’ sugar.

Makes 12 muffins.

Source: Brunch

Apple Buttermilk Pie


2 medium Granny Smith apples
3 eggs
1-1/2 cups sugar, divided
1 cup buttermilk
1/3 cup butter, melted
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon, divided
2 teaspoons vanilla
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg, divided
1 (9-inch) unbaked pie shell
whipped cream and additional ground cinnamon (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF.
  2. Peel and core apples. Cut into small chunks. Place apples in small bowl. Cover with cold water and set aside.
  3. Beat eggs in medium bowl with electric mixer at low speed until blended.
  4. Add all but 1 teaspoon sugar, buttermilk, butter, flour, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, vanilla and 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg. Beat at low speed until well blended.
  5. Drain apples thoroughly and place in unbaked pie shell. Pour buttermilk mixture over apples.
  6. Combine remaining 1 teaspoon sugar, 1 teaspoon cinnamon and 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg in small bowl. Sprinkle over top of the pie.
  7. Bake 50 to 60 minutes or until knife inserted into center comes out clean.
  8. Serve warm or at room temperature. Garnish with whipped cream and additional cinnamon.

Makes 8 servings.

Source: Irish Cooking Bible

Apple Strudel


9 oz plain white flour, sifted
2 tbsp oil
1/2 cup warm water


1 1b 2 oz apples or similar, peeled, sliced
1 oz bread crumbs
1 oz butter
1 oz raisins
1-1/2 oz granulated sugar
1 tsp grounded cinnamon
clarified butter to brush
icing sugar to sprinkle


  1. Place the flour, warm water, oil and salt in a bowl and knead until a dough forms, preferably with an electric mixer. Shape into a ball, brush with oil and leave to rest for 1/2 hour.
  2. Lay a large cotton cloth on a table and dredge with flour. Put the dough in the centre and sift over a little flour. Pat the dough into a square then roll out into a large rectangle.
  3. To stretch the dough, flour your hands and slip them, palms down, under the centre of the dough. Working towards the nearest edge, move your hands apart repeatedly whilst gently stretching and pulling the dough. Move round the table stretching a section of dough at a time until it is thin enough.
  4. Cut off the thick borders which will build up around the edges.
  5. Spread the filling thick in a strip along the edge nearest to you. Brush the pastry edges with clarified butter.
  6. Fold in the side edges of the pastry. Using the cloth to help lift the dough, roll the strudel into a fairly loose roll.
  7. Place the strudel seam-side down, onto a large baking tray or into a deep roasting tin. Brush the strudel with cold, clarified butter. Bake for 25 minutes with 200°C. Brush once more with butter.
  8. Remove from the oven, sprinkle with icing sugar and serve warm.

Makes 4 servings.

Source: Culinary Austria

Strawberry Scones with Almonds


1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1-1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 stick cold unsalted butter, cubed
1-1/4 cups buttermilk, plus more for brushing
1-1/2 cups sliced strawberries
2 tablespoons turbinado sugar (also called Sugar in the Raw)


1/2 cup sliced almonds
2 cups confectioners’ sugar
3 tablespoons buttermilk
1/2 teaspoon pure almond extract
pinch of salt


  1. To make the scone, preheat the oven to 400° and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the all-purpose and whole wheat pastry flours with the granulated sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
  3. Using a pastry blender or 2 knives, cut in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse meal.
  4. Stir in the 1-1/4 cups of buttermilk and carefully fold in the strawberries.
  5. Using an ice cream scoop or a spoon, scoop the dough into 16 mounds on the prepared baking sheets. Brush the scones with buttermilk and sprinkle with the turbinado sugar. Bake in the upper and lower thirds of the oven for 30 to 35 minutes, until the scones are golden and cooked through; shift the pans from front to back and top to bottom halfway through baking. Let the scones cool on a rack for 30 minutes.
  6. To make the topping, lower the oven temperature to 350°.
  7. Spread the almonds in a pie plate and toast for about 8 minutes, until golden.
  8. In a small bowl, whisk the confectioners’ sugar with the buttermilk, almond extract and salt. Cover and let the glaze stand at room temperature.
  9. Drizzle the scones with the glaze, then top with the almonds, pressing to help them adhere. Let dry for 10 minutes, then serve.

Makes 16 scones.

Source: Chef Breanne Varela