Introducing for Thom, with love – a new series documenting the small batch recipes I create for my favorite man, chock full of love. Over the course of the past half decade, I’ve witnessed Thom eat his fair share of baked goods – and in the process I discovered that sometimes all he needs is a single serving of chocolate chip cookies because the man has no self control when cookies are involved. And if you leave an entire batch at his disposal, he’ll eat them all and ask you to make more. Then he’ll eat those, too, and complain about his stomach aching and you’ll decide it’s time to start developing small batch recipes. So if your favorite person is like Thom, surely they’ll appreciate these recipes. And so will you because they can be thrown together without having to dirty heavy mixing machines or three baking sheets or every single measuring device you own.
The recipes, they’re good. Straight forward and equally as delicious as a full batch, but without all of the elbow grease required to scoop 36 cookies or roll out a 10″ pie crust. The selling point, for me, is that small batch recipes don’t produce any waste. Not that anything really goes to waste around here because I’m the lady who shows up at my neighbor’s door at 10 o’clock at night, begging her to take a container of brownies away because Bad things will happen if you don’t. The other selling point is the expression on Thom’s face when he realizes I’ve made something special just for him.
Friends, I’ve been saying it for years: the best way to a man’s heart is, without a doubt, through his stomach.
Notes: If you prefer a sweeter pie crust, feel free to increase the sugar to one full teaspoon. But I promise you won’t require it if you fill the pie with the full 6 teaspoons (2 tablespoons) of sugar. This recipe requires the use of one deep dish 4″ tartlet pan (although I suppose a ramekin would work, as well). I got my tartlet pans in a set at Williams-Sonoma, but if you like getting ripped off, you can get them individually at Sur la Table (my least favorite kitchen store in the history of kitchen stores) (look at the price difference per tart pan – $5.66). Greedy asswads.
SINGLE SERVING DEEP DISH APPLE PIE
1/2 cup unbleached flour
1/2 tsp cane sugar
Pinch of fine sea salt
3 tbsp vegan butter, cold
2-3 tbsp water, ice cold
4-6 tsp cane sugar
1 tsp potato starch
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
One medium apple, peeled and chopped
1/2 tsp lemon juice, optional
Preheat oven to 350˚F. Lightly oil a 4″ deep dish tart pan; set aside. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, and salt. Cut in the butter, using a pastry cutter or two knives, until the mixture resembles coarse meal with a few larger chunks. Add two tablespoons of the water and mix with fingers until a smooth dough forms. If the dough feels a little dry, add a bit more water. Knead the dough for 1-2 minutes then wrap with plastic and let rest in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
To make the filling, stir together the sugar (I used 5 teaspoons), starch, and cinnamon. Add the apples and lemon juice; toss to coat and set aside. Line a flat surface with parchment paper and sprinkle with flour. Roll the dough into a circle about 1/4″ thick. Fit to prepared tart pan, making sure it’s pressed into the bottom into the scalloped edges. Roll a rolling pin over the top of the pan to remove the excess dough. Fill with apples. Roll the remaining dough scraps, cut with a mini heart shaped cookie cutter (dip in flour if sticking to dough), and arrange on top of pie. Brush with a bit of soy milk and sprinkle with sugar, if desired. Bake at 350˚F for 35-40 minutes (if you notice the hearts starting to brown, put a piece of tin foil over top of them after about 25 minutes). Let cool for 10 minutes then serve. Can be refrigerated in an air tight container for up to two days.
If you’d prefer to assemble the pie and save it for later, remove the pie from the freezer when ready to bake and let it thaw for about 20 minutes. Follow baking instructions above. Unbaked pie will keep frozen for up to 6 weeks in an air tight, freezer proof container.
Yield: 1 4″ pie