by Judy Kim
Apple Cardamom Cable Knit Pie
Yield: 1 (9-inch) Pie
I had a long career in fashion prior to food and it influences my current work in more ways than I ever could have imagined. My first job was at Ralph Lauren as a design assistant in the Men's sweater division. This Irish Cable Knit design was inspired by Aran Irish Sweaters. Not surprising as we used to make knit downs of cable knit designs all day long, always looking for new combinations. I use a similar approach when creating a design for pie crust.
1 tablespoon heavy cream
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour, plus additional for rolling pastry
2 meyer lemons, zested and juiced
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon flaky sea salt, such as Jacobsen
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
6 (about 3 1/2 pounds) medium Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and thinly sliced on mandolin
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch cubes and frozen
- Place Baking Steel on the middle rack of your oven. Preheat oven 500°F. Preferably preheat for 30 to 60 minutes. In a small bowl beat egg with heavy cream; set aside.
- Prepare the vodka pie crust recipe, cut in half and wrap each piece in plastic wrap. Shape one half into a flat round disk and shape other half into a narrow flat rectangle. Let dough rest 20 minutes or overnight in refrigerator. Note: If you plan to make a similar cable knit design, you may need additional dough.
- Let the dough come to room temperature for 5 minutes before rolling out to prevent cracking. On a lightly floured surface, roll out round disk to thickness between 1/8-inch and 1/4-inch. Keep dough moving and apply flour as needed to prevent it from sticking. Gently roll onto rolling pin and transfer to pie dish. Trim with scissors or a knife along the rim leaving a 1/2-inch border. Note: Be careful not to stretch the dough or it will just shrink back.
- Cut second rectangular pie dough in half lengthwise. Roll one half of dough (A) to 9-inches in length and 1/4-inch thick. Roll remaining dough (B) to 9-inches in length and 1/8-inch thickness. Work quickly to prevent the dough from getting warm. If needed, place them in the fridge to firm up during the process.
- Dough A: Use a ruler or flexible cutting board to cut long even strips. For a square edge braid, cut into 1/4-inch strips with a sharp paring knife. Braid together keeping both ends loose; transfer to a sheet pan. Cut dough into six 1/4-inch strips and roll against floured board to round edges. Repeat braiding technique and transfer to the sheet pan, keep in the fridge while you roll the remaining dough. Dough B: Cut four 1-inch strips. Loosely twist 2 pieces together to create a cable knit effect and repeat; transfer to the same sheet pan. Cut three diamonds from any leftover dough and score with a knife in a diagonal direction. Roll four balls of dough and flatten slightly to create 4 small buttons; score with a curved fork to mimic a leather football button. Fashion was my background if you couldn't tell. Transfer sheet pan back to the fridge. NOTE: If you are having trouble with the dough breaking while braiding, it might mean the butter pieces are too large or dough is too warm. But even if the pastry is made properly unfortunately sometimes butter will create a weak point. As I mention, you may need more dough to execute this exact design. I tossed a few pieces along the way. Besides, practice makes perfect.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine zest of 2 Meyer lemons, 3 tablespoons Meyer lemon juice, sugar, sea salt, cardamom, cinnamon and vanilla extract. Fold in apples until well coated; sprinkle 3 tablespoons flour and toss again. Transfer apple mixture into pie dish, try to keep the mixture even. Scatter frozen butter cubes evenly all over the apples.
- Remove sheet pan with pastry from the fridge. Start in the middle and place cable knit pieces tightly next to each other. I find having too many gaps prevents the pie from cooking evenly. Trim pieces to fit within the pie dish. Fold edge of pie inward neatly and crimp together by pinching. Brush evenly with light coating of egg wash. Adjust oven to 400°F, gently place pie dish directly onto Baking Steel and bake until golden brown, about 1 hour. If necessary, rotate the pie for even baking. For best results, let pie cool for 4 to 6 hours before serving.
You can use leftover dough for decorative cut outs. Roll dough to 1/8-inch thickness. Dip pie cutters or cookie cutters in flour and cut out shapes. Lay them evenly on a quarter sheet pan and layer using parchment paper. I didn't use any cut outs for this cable knit design, but you can keep these in the freezer for a future use. Highly suggest baking them off and adding them to a bowl of ice cream or berries and cream.