It’s Apple Pie Season!

It’s apple picking season and all I’ve been able to think of lately is home made Apple Pie!


I just happen to love making pies and I think possibly Apple Pie is my favorite to make.

So this week when I grabbed my pyrex bowl and my ingredients, I grabbed my camera too so that I could share my recipe with all you other Farmgirls.


I don’t know about you but I love using lard for my pie crusts.  It seems like the dough is the perfect consistency to work with and it bakes up flaky and beautiful!


Step One:  Place 2 cups of flour, 1 teaspoon of salt and 2/3 cup of lard in pyrex mixing bowl.

(I love my vintage pyrex!)

Do you have one of these handy pastry cutters for cutting in the lard to the flour?  I’ve been known to use a fork, a knife or my fingers but nothing works like a pastry cutter!


Step Two:  Cut lard into flour until is forms nice pea size crumbles.

It just gets the dough to that perfect consistency.


Step Three:  Add about 3 – 5 tablespoons cold water, just a little bit at a time, stirring dough until it holds together nicely but is not wet.  Add more or less water as necessary.


Step Four:  Lightly form dough into a ball and place on floured surface and let dough “rest” while you prepare your apples.

My mother always said, “Do not overwork your pie dough, it will make it tough”.  This is always a little hard for me because I want to knead it like bread dough.  But literally all you do is lightly form it into a ball and set it aside.


Step Five:  Peel, core, and slice 8 apples.

Here’s another tool that you need if you don’t already have one.  I love my apple peeler.  It is a bit overworked and unfortunately is jimmy rigged in a few places to hold it together.  I really need to buy a new one!  But, even “broken” it still works better than peeling by hand!


I’m not a big apple connoisseur but I do know what I love in a pie.  And I love Honey Crisp, Braeburn and Pink Lady apples the best.


Step Six:  Throw sliced apples in a large pyrex bowl.  Add 4 tablespoons of flour, 3/4 cup of sugar, 1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon and nutmeg.


Step Seven:  Stir together very thoroughly.  Set aside to allow the juices to start flowing.

This will seem like A LOT of apple slices for one little pie.  And it is.  I love a pie that is positively piled with apple slices!


Step Eight:  Now go back to your pie crust and divide it into two portions – one being a little bigger than the other one.  Roll the smaller dough out on a floured surface to a nice large circle and place in a nine inch glass pie pan.  Using your fingers press it into place, adjusting as necessary.  It doesn’t need to be pretty!  Roll out the larger dough.  You will want this circle of dough to be quite a bit larger than the first one.


Step Nine:  Gently pour all your apple slices into the pie pan. Put a few teaspoons of butter on top of the apple slices.

You want your apple slices to be a fairly large mound in the pan.  Don’t worry if it looks a little huge!  They will cook down.


Step Ten:  Gently lift your large dough circle and set it on top of the apple slices.

It’s okay if it tears or doesn’t fit evenly.  It will cook up beautifully no matter what.


Step Eleven:  Fold the top edges of the dough down over the bottom crust, tucking under as you go.  (You may need to trim some of the dough first.)


Step Twelve:  Crimp the edges with your fingers to seal the crust.


Step Thirteen:  Cut steam vents in the top crust.  Beat one egg with a fork in a small bowl and using a pastry brush, brush the egg on the entire crust, even the crimped edges.


Step Fourteen:  Sprinkle generously with sugar!  (I used some of the dough scraps and cut out hearts that I placed on the pie.  Just for fun!)

Your pie is ready to pop into the oven.  Now listen close because this next step is the important part.


Step Fifteen:  Bake in a pre-heated 400 degree oven for 20 minutes.  Lower oven temperature to 350 degrees and bake about 30 – 40 minutes more.  

Baking at the high temperature sets the crust so that it doesn’t get soggy.  Then baking at the lower temperature cooks the apples without burning the crust!  (It’s a trick that I learned from a very special elderly lady – it was her wedding gift to me 32 years ago!)


You should end up with these luscious juices flowing out of the steam vents.  You can also take a knife and cut into the apples through one of the vents to make sure the apples are soft.  You don’t want them soggy, but you also don’t want them crispy.  If they seem a little hard you can put your pie back into the oven for a few more minutes.


Cut yourself a slice and eat it hot, right out of the oven!


Or wait a little bit, pour some cream over the top and eat it warm.

Place the left over pie (if there is any) in the refrigerator and eat it for breakfast the next day!  That’s what we did with this one!

What is your favorite pie to make this time of year?  I’d also love to know if you use lard, butter, or shortening in your crust!  Please share with me and all of us farm girls!

Until our gravel roads cross again… so long.


  1. Deanna says:

    Girl, that is one luscious looking pie. Everything was just right, including using lard. It’s the best for a flaky crust. I love to bake pies and am well known in my community for them. It’s hard to pick a favorite, because I like them all! Sometimes I make my apple pie with a crumb topping and that’s yummy too. The old Farm Journal Pie Cookbook I have is literally falling apart, but it’s the best if you can find one. Enjoy your fall!

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Deanna, that cookbook you mentioned sounds like something I need to get my hands on…. the search is on!!! 🙂 It’s hard for me to pick a favorite too. Because I love a good pumpkin pie so much. And I have a friend that makes the most awesome buttermilk pie that is so amazing! If I had to to choose a dessert it would always be pie! – Dori –

  2. gigi says:

    Oh, yes LARD (homemade lard and leaf lard) is a best to perfection of pie crust.
    Try to use lard instead of butter in some of your cookie recipes and believe me nothing compares to the taste and freshness of the cookies. I use homemade lard in my cookies and the longer they stay, the better and better they taste.

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Gigi, okay you’ve got me excited now. I’m going to try lard in cookies very soon! Thanks for sharing. My mom used to make lard but I never have. You’ve got me thinking though! 🙂 – Dori –

  3. I like to use non-hydrogenated lard when I can find it, but if I can’t I use non-hydrogenated shortening and butter. Your recipe is very similar to mine, but I have never tried those varieties in my pies, now I need to. What’s my favorite pie? This time of year it’s apple. Fresh out of the oven I can hardly wait until it’s cool enough to cut! You got a very nice crimp on that crust!

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Kathy, thank you! I don’t think I’ve ever actually looked for non-hydrogenated lard before and I must. I bet Whole Foods carries it?? Yes, my pie is very similar to yours. I like what you said about adding cheese to an apple pie…. like why would you do that?! 🙂 I have so many favorite pies I never can choose – but I will always choose pie if given the choice! – Dori –

  4. CJ Armstrong says:

    Looks absolutely divine! Wish I could come over for a sample!
    I make Apple Crisp.. . . a favorite of my family . . . with apples from the orchard my dad planted. And I used real butter in the topping!

    • Dori Troutman says:

      CJ – I wish you could come over too! I also love Apple Crisp and I agree – NOTHING better than real butter on the topping! And whip cream. Or ice cream. And coffee! Ha! – Dori –

  5. Kay (old cowgirl) Montoy says:

    Hi Dori,
    I have always used 1/2 shortening and 1/2 butter. My father who was know for his pies, used lard and then shortening when it became available. Both were very nice and flaky. I think some of it has to do with the working or not so much, of the dough. I have one of the apple corer, slicer, peeler and would not be without it, except now (It got packed along with some other things like my pastry cutter). So I just buy the ready made crusts to fill and bake. Not quite the same. My Dad taught me to eat apple pie with either a slice of cheddar or American cheese on top of the cut slice. Never ate it with ice cream.
    I love Mincemeat pies. You know the old fashioned kind with real meat mixed in. Anything else is just a raison pie. When I was growing up we had deer meat to help with getting through Winter. Mom would cook up some and put it in with some of the fat and fresh apples cubed along with the mince meat mix from the store. I sure long for that pie. No one knows how any more.
    God Bless and hugs from the West,

    My favorite pie is an old fashioned Mince meat pie. My Daughters just love it and so do I.

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Hi Kay, you know I’m not sure I’ve ever eaten the real mince meat pie. I’m going to ask my mother because it seems like she – or her mother – would certainly have made them. So maybe I’ve forgotten. And yes, over-working the pie dough is the clincher. I’ve never eaten my apple pie with a piece of cheese but I’ve heard of a lot of people that do! Hugs back to you. – Dori –

  6. Becky Anderson says:

    I grew up in Maine…BIG Apple orchards where our family would go for the day and pick the most beautiful McIntosh apples fresh from the tree. They’re best just after the first frost.

    We would pick and eat apples all day and come home with about 15 bushels. We had a cellar in our home that would keep the apples crisp throughout the winter.

    The week after we got home with the apples my mother would can, make and can apple sauce, make apple butter and lots of pies! My dad loved apple pie! She would also freeze a few to have on hand if company came.

    To us kids apples were like candy…to this day you just can’t beat a good Maine McIntosh.

    Happy baking,.whatever your favorite apple may be.:-)

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Becky – I love a good McIntosh apple too. OH to be able to pick so many fresh ones and keep in a cellar. We have a cave with an underground creek and we’ve been talking about making a root cellar there. It is cool year round. But spooky! 🙂 It is awesome how long apples will stay good. Happy baking to you too dear friend. – Dori –

  7. Lisa Vogeli says:

    I love apple pie! My favorite has got to be Marionberry Pie, it took a move to Oregon to figure out and taste that delicious pie. Next in line, you got it Apple Pie! I really enjoyed the beautiful pics and info. I am like you lard is best for the crusts and of course Fresh cream whipped up for topping. Love to you and your family..

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Lisa, I have NEVER had Marionberry Pie… never even tasted Marionberries but I’ve heard all about them. Eldon and I took a trip to the Pacific Northwest a number of years ago and came home with gallons of Cranberries, but I don’t think it was Marionberry season. Someday….. Hugs to you. – Dori –

  8. Dori,
    your pie looks fabulous! And my family knows pie! thanks for sharing your recipe, I can’t wait to try the crust it looks perfect. Want to know our family “secret” ingredient for apple pie? Red Hot Candies. Add a couple to your apple mixture in place of some sugar and cinnamon and it gives your pie a lovely vibrant red color as well as the perfect flavor! Try it if you want sometime. I sure have been enjoying your posts and am terribly jealous of your pyrex bowls! 😉

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Erin, that’s funny about the red hot candies because I remember making a pie when I was a kid that we the recipe called for the red hot candies. That memory was tucked away in my brain and came flying out when I read your comment! 🙂 I will have to do that next time. Yes, I love my pyrex bowls. I use them every single day for one thing or another. Probably my most used item in my kitchen! Thanks for writing! – Dori –

  9. bonnie b says:

    Oh Dori, I so enjoyed your blog and pics. It reminded me so much of my mother-in-law, who was like a mother to me. She had the set of pyrex bowls and always used lard for her pie crusts. She was always well known for her pies (and fried chicken) 😀 With cholesterol being the bad guy for so many years, I gave up the idea of lard and now I believe I will try using it again. Your pie looked so yummy – I think my favorite is apple and like a few others, I like a piece of cheddar cheese with mine – or ice cream or whipped cream. LOL And like you, I would choose pie over almost any other dessert. I am loving your blog and getting to know you.

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Bonnie, thank you so much for writing! Those pyrex bowls bring about so many memories for so many people… I’ve had a guest walk in my kitchen and she just kept staring at them until she said, “I feel like crying when I look at those bowls, I miss my Grandmother so much”! 🙂 Oh, fried chicken sounds SO GOOD!!! – Dori –

  10. IrishSwede says:

    My fondest Fall memories are of my Grandmother (Nana) sitting at her father’s dining room table (now mine) in her yellow gingham apron, peeling apples and teaching me how to make apple pie. It was the best of times. I can almost smell it baking now. She used lard also, and the crusts were flaky light. As time passed, I had moved away from using lard, but after seeing your recipe, I’m changing back to what is time tested, true and just good to the last piece.

    • Dori Troutman says:

      You know, I think maybe that is one of the things about making pies that is so special. It’s the memories of days gone by. Making the crust from scratch, peeling the apples. You are absolutely right. IT WAS THE BEST OF TIMES. Thanks for writing! – Dori –

  11. “My oh my”, That is a good looking pie. Dori I still use the old fashion ingredients too. I love the Amish butter that I buy from an Organic market locally. I love pies too. This time of year I like to make sweet potato and pumpkin, which are plentiful in our area. I just came back from a trip to Pennsylvania and bought some apples, I will make an apple pie and some apple sauce. Love making (squirreling) stuff for the winter. Love your Blog and keep up the good work, Juanita

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Juanita, oh that Amish butter sounds so good. Nothing like good butter! I grew some “Candy Roaster” pumpkins… (they are an heirloom variety and some call them a squash). Anyway, they make the very best pumpkin pie. I have plenty of puree in my freezer for the winter! Happy cooking! – Dori –

  12. I love your vintage Pyrex, too, but that red and white rolling pin is a work of art! Is it glass? Yum…you make me want pie! My favorite pie this time of year to make and gobble is pumpkin pie (though apple is a close second). Here in New England, we always go apple picking at least once, and make a fresh apple pie! My mouth is watering…
    Farmgirl Hugs, Nicole (Suburban Farmgirl)

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Nicole, my white and red rolling pin is from Anthropologie – yes it is glass. I use it for decoration only because honestly? Nothing works as well as my very old wooden one!! And I do love my vintage pyrex – I would have to say it is my favorite thing in my kitchen! 🙂 I would love, love, love to go apple picking in New England. Maybe someday if I ever get there in the Fall to see the leaves I’ll pick apples too! 🙂 – Dori –

  13. Cindy says:

    Wow! That pie looks so yummy! I will be baking one soon! Thanks for the great recipe!

  14. I love your beautiful pyrex bowls also and has brought back many memories for me with my nanny and mom using them in the kitchen while I was growing up. I agree your pie is a work of art and looks so good. I will try the lard and in the past I have not had any luck with pie making but you have inspired me to try again following your recipe.
    Thank you

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Charlene, let me know how your pie crust works if you venture into the pie making journey again! I do love making pies! Also feel free to email me if you have any questions! – Dori –

      P.S. YES, those Pyrex bowls really do bring back the memories! 🙂

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