If you’ve watched TV in the United States in the last couple weeks, you’ve probably seen someone make an apple slab pie. From the Today Show to the Food Network, everyone’s making big, rectangular apple pies decorated with top crusts cut in the shape of leaves. But no one’s done a gluten free apple slab pie – until now!
Most of these giant pies have been done on *15 x 10 jelly roll pans, but because we’re a small family and gluten free baked goods don’t keep for very long, we opted for a *13 x 9 cookie sheet instead. If you really needed to do this in the larger size, you could scale up the recipe (I’d make an extra pie crust and add a few more cups of apples.) Once again, we found our pie crust in America’s Test Kitchen’s *How Can It Be Gluten Free cookbook – I cannot recommend this book enough, it’s a game changer. Instead of doing leaves for a top crust, we decided to make it extra fun with a Halloween-themed bat topping. You can really use any cookie cutters you like to make your pie suit any holiday or occasion. Here we go!
Gluten free apple slab pie
(makes one 13 x 9 cookie sheet-sized pie)
^This recipe uses the ATK gluten free flour blend
Follow recipe directions through Step 3 (refrigerate, then rest on counter 15-30 minutes before rolling.)
Take about ¼ of one disk and add it to the other disk. Gently shape the now-larger disk into a rectangle. Roll the rectangle out between two pieces of plastic wrap so that it is just larger than your 13 x 9 cookie sheet (leaving enough overhang so you can create pie edges.) Peel off the top layer of plastic. Place the cookie sheet face down on top of the dough, then carefully and gently flip the whole thing over so your crust lands in the pan. (We found this easier to do with two sets of hands.) Gently tuck any overhanging dough back over so it creates an edge around the whole pan and use your fingers to give it a wavy shape. Set aside for now.
Roll the remaining dough out between two pieces of plastic wrap. We rolled ours into a mostly rectangular shape on top of a cutting board – this is the piece you’re going to cut your topping pieces from. Leave both pieces of plastic in place and put the rolled dough on a board in the freezer for 10 minutes. We found that letting the dough get a bit more solid before cutting the shapes out made it much easier to work with.
While the top crust is chilling in the freezer, make your apple filling.
6 cups of apples, peeled and diced small or sliced thinly
½ cup sugar
¼ cup light brown sugar
¼ cup ATK gluten free flour blend
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon nutmeg
A dash of salt
2 tablespoons butter
Mix the dry ingredients together well in a bowl. Add the apples and stir well to evenly coat. Pour the whole mixture into the bottom crust and spread evenly across the pan. Dice the butter into small pieces and dot them throughout the filling.
Preheat your oven to 350 F.
Now that your crust has been in the freezer for 10 minutes, it’s time to cut out your shapes. We used powdered sugar to “flour” our cutters and found it helped. Peel the top plastic off the dough, leaving the bottom plastic in place on top of the board. Press your cookie cutter into the dough firmly. We worked from the edge, gently peeled back the dough outside of the cutter, then reached under the plastic to push the dough inside the cutter up so that the shaped dough stayed inside the cookie cutter when we pulled it away. (See picture if that isn’t making sense.) If you’re going to use colored sugar, we found it easiest to sprinkle inside the cookie cutter and shake around to coat the shape. Then we popped the dough out of the cutter and placed it on top of the apples. You want there to be some spaces left open, so create a cool pattern but leave some apples exposed. Continue cutting out shapes and placing them on the apples until you’ve got the right coverage. We recommend working quickly as the dough gets tougher to cut as it warms back up.
Once your pie is all assembled, cover the outer crust edges with strips of foil and bake for 15 minutes. Remove the foil and bake another 30-35 minutes, until the outer crust is golden.
As with anything gluten free, the sooner you eat this, the better. This crust won’t freeze well, so you’ll want to make sure you eat this within a couple days. We’ve stored ours on the counter, wrapped in foil.
I have to say that I’m really impressed with ATK’s pie crust – it was reasonably easy to work with for being gluten free, and it tastes amazing. It’s always nice when you find a way to have foods you usually miss out on being gluten free!
Have you ever made an apple slab pie? What do you think of the bats? Tell me in the comments!
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