No-Sugar-Added Fruit Pie
I make this for my dad. At Christmas. I actually make mini ones that I freeze, so that he can bake them himself, and have pie when he wants it. One crust recipe makes either a top or a bottom for a full size (9 inch?) pie, or tops and bottoms for two pot pie sized pies, or 3 muffin-tin pies. So, make the number of crust recipes you'll need. Filling makes one big pie, or... some littler pies. At least 2 pot pies or 3 muffins, but you'd probably have some filling left over.
Find this: http://www.amazon.com/Honey-Tree-Imitation-12-Ounce-Plasti/dp/B000YSXDDY (sugar-free imitation honey)
- 6 Tablespoons butter, cut into 1T sized pieces
- 2 Tablespoons crisco, cut or scooped into 1T sized pieces
- 1 cup flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Ice water in a spray bottle
Put butter, crisco, and flour in the freezer. Leave it for a while. Put the flour and salt in a food processor, and spin it. Add the butter, and spin it until the butter is all mixed in the flour, and it looks like corn meal. Add the crisco, and spin just a few times, until the chunks are smallish, but still there. Spray with water so the top is slightly wet, and spin. Repeat until the dough clumps. Put it in a plastic bag in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
If you have no food processor, use the cutting in technique in this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bjQ0GSSVymU but, completely incorporate the butter, put the butter-flour back in the freezer for a few minutes, and then bring it back out and cut in the crisco, stopping when the pieces are slightly smaller than pea sized. Spray on the water, mix until it is incorporated, and repeat until the dough comes together, then into the fridge for 30 minutes, same as above.
- 6 to 8 cups of fruit (I use peeled, cored, and cut apples, or frozen peaches or cherries, or frozen berries. Or fresh, if it's in season, but it's not in season in North America at Christmas)
- 1/2 to 3/4 of a bottle of imitation honey
- 2 Tablespoons of salted butter
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon and 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground anise seed
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon; or whatever you like
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Melt the butter in a large skillet. Add the fruit, then pour 1/2 of the bottle of honey and the seasonings on top of the fruit and stir. After it is well mixed, put a lid on it, and let it steam until the fruit is slightly soft. Take the lid off, and let the liquid reduce, stirring often at first, and continually as the liquid approaches syrup consistency. Taste it, and add more imitation honey if it is not sweet enough. How much you need will vary, depending not just on the type but also the quality of the fruit you use. Remove from heat, and let it cool. When it's cool, roll out the crust (see below), assemble the pie (if you need instructions, I bet that you tube video has some.) and bake at 350 degrees F, about 45 minutes to an hour for a full size pie, until the crust is golden brown. Since the filling is already cooked, the pie is done when the crust is golden brown. If you make pies to freeze, freeze them until they are firm, then wrap tightly. When they are to be used, bake at 350 degrees F, until golden brown. Same as before, it's already cooked inside, and the fillings seems to melt and heat in the time it takes the crust to brown.
Rolling out the crust: I roll mine out between two sheets of parchment. On the top sheet, I draw a circle the size I need the crust to be. The bottom should have a diameter based on the size of your pie tin: (diameter of the bottom) + 2 (the length of the wall) + 1/2 inch. For the top I put the tin upside down on the paper, trace it lightly, and then draw another circle 1/2 inch further out.