From ancient times, apples have been tied to a lot of stories.
In Ancient Greek mythology, there are countless of myths which talk about the apple.
A particular favorite of mine is the story behind the island of Milos.
In Greek, “Μήλο” means apple and the story goes as follows…
A man named Milos traveled to Cyprus, and became good friends with the local king.
The king, to show his appreciation, gave Milos a wife, by the name of Pelia.
Pelia was dedicated to the worship of Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love, beauty, pleasure, and procreation.
Milos and Pelia fell deeply in love and had a child, which they named Milos after his father’s name.
When the king died, Milos depressed by the sudden death of his best friend, hung himself from a tree.
Pelia, desperate from her husband’s death took her own life too.
The goddess Aphrodite, touched by the love of this young couple, transformed Pelia into a pigeon (her sacred bird) and Milos into an apple (the symbol of Aphrodite) as well.
She then took the young Milos under her protection and brought him to a new island that was later named Milos. Milos is the beautiful island that is located in the Cyclades.
I wish I could share with you many more myths about the apple, but I’m getting weird glances from Vassilis, who is urging me to write about our easy apple crumble pie!
We have been making this easy apple crumble pie for the last couple of years and the recipe has been altered very little from the first time we made it.
It’s a recipe that we love to serve at dinners and on some occasions, we have taken it as gift to parties or family gatherings.
Anyone who has tried it, has instantly asked for the recipe, so here it is folks, apple crumble pie!
For the crust
This crust is very simple to throw together and even easier to work with.
All you need is 4 ingredients! Flour, salt, butter and water.
The secret to a good pie crust is to use chilled butter and ice water.
That’s it! You don’t really need a blender or fancy equipment. It only takes about 10 minutes.
This dough rolls out and presses into pans so well, it will soon become your go-to pie crust.
For the apple pie filling
Our number one problem when we started making an apple pie was that it retained too much moisture, resulting into a soggy crust.
We soon found out that by making our filling 4-5 hours ahead of time, we would transform all excess juices into a syrup, which would caramelize after baking.
After some major failures and errors, we soon found out that perhaps we needed to add some cornstarch, in order to end up with a saucy filling.
Cornstarch really worked wonders in thickening the excess juices.
We were surprised to see how well the pie crust remained crisp for days.
So, how do you use cornstarch in your apple pie filling? Well it’s rather simple.
Once you are ready to fill your crust, open the zip-lock bag with the sliced apples, add the cornstarch and toss everything.
Then pour the apple pie filling into your crust along with all the juices.
For our apple crumble pie, we like to use green apples (Granny Smith).
Their sour taste contrasts beautifully with the sweetness of brown sugar and the aromatic spices.
We have, also, tried a couple variations of spices.
The one we really like is cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg and a little bit of ground ginger.
In some occasions, we omitted ground ginger and we added black raisins which we love!
For the crumble topping
We have argued multiple times on using a pie crust for the top.
We know a lot of people love it.
We think that it can get a bit soggy with all that trapped heat, so we opt for a crumble topping.
Should you want a prettier looking pie, you might prefer to use a pie crust for the top as well.
In that case, just double the ingredients in the pie crust recipe.
Anyway, this oat crumble topping is delicious and super crispy as well!
This easy apple crumble pie is best eaten warm the day it’s made.
We love to serve it with homemade vanilla or cinnamon ice-cream or whipped cream.
Give it a try and you’ll love it!
Let us know how it turned out, or post a photo at #cookouvagia on Instagram.
- 200gr. all-purpose flour
- 125gr. cold unsalted butter, diced
- 50-60ml. cold water
- 2gr. salt
- 1,5 – 1,6kg. Granny Smith apples, peeled & sliced (each apple cut in 16 slices)
- 180-200gr. brown sugar
- 10gr. black raisins (optional)
- 2 tsp. ground cinnamon
- ¼ tsp. ground nutmeg
- ¼ tsp. ground cloves
- ¼ tsp. ground ginger (optional)
- 1gr. salt
- 25gr. white cornstarch
- 140gr. all-purpose flour
- 60gr. melted butter
- 25gr. whole-wheat Quaker oats
- 25gr. brown sugar
- 1 pinch salt
Combine flour and salt in a medium bowl.
Add butter and work with your fingers until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
Pour in water and combine until the dough starts to hold together. Do not overprocess!
Form the dough into a ball and wrap tightly in cling film.
Refrigerate for at least 3-4 hours (we refrigerated dough overnight).
Add the apples and the raisins, if using, into a big zip-lock bag.
Combine cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, salt, brown sugar and ginger (if using) into a bowl.
Add this mixture into the zip-lock bag and toss until apples are nicely coated.
Remove air and seal tightly.
Flip the zip-lock bag every now and then.
You can keep it out of the fridge, at room temperature, for 4-5 hours, until apples soak and become soft.
You can, also, refrigerate overnight and continue with the recipe next morning (this is exactly what we did).
Into a medium bowl, combine flour, butter, whole-wheat oats, brown sugar and salt until large clumps form.
Refrigerate until use or prepare last minute.
Preheat oven to 200 degrees Celsius/Upper and lower heating elements.
Remove dough from the fridge and let it come to room temperature for 10 minutes, so as it becomes easy to roll out.
Use a rolling pin and roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface (you can, also, roll out the dough using two pieces of parchment paper. Place the dough in between and roll out to fit a 26cm. tempered glass tart pan).
Press evenly into the sides and bottom of the tart pan.
Open the zip-lock bag and add the cornstarch. Toss until well combined.
Pour the apple filling into the tart pan along with its juices.
Arrange the apples as evenly as possible.
Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Remove from the fridge and sprinkle with the crumble topping.
Transfer into the oven, on the lower-middle rack.
Bake for 70-75 minutes or until golden brown.
Let it come to room temperature and enjoy!