Pennsylvania Dutch Apple Pie

Pennsylvania Dutch Apple Pie

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For the Crust:

  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold
  • 1 cup (dip and sweep method) bleached all-purpose flour
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 cup cream cheese, cold
  • 1 tablespoon ice water
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cider vinegar

For the Filling:

  • 2 1/2 pounds apples, peeled, cored, halved, and sliced 1/4 inch thick
  • 1/2 cup raisins (optional)
  • 1/2 cup cream
  • 1/2 cup (3 1/2 ounces) granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

For the Streusel Topping:

  • 1 cup (5 ounces) all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup packed (3 1/2 ounces) light brown sugar
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt


For the Crust:

May be made up 45 minutes to 2 days ahead and is best made at least the night before.

Cut the butter into small (about 3/4-inch) cubes and freeze until solid, at least 30 minutes. Place the flour, salt, and baking powder in a reclosable gallon-size freezer bag and freeze for at least 30 minutes.

Place the flour mixture in a food processor with the metal blade and process for a few seconds to combine. Set the bag aside. Cut the cream cheese into 3 or 4 pieces and add it to the flour. Process for about 20 seconds or until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Add the frozen butter and pulse until none of the butter is larger than the size of a pea. (Toss with a fork to see.) Remove the cover and add the water and vinegar. Pulse until most of the butter is reduced to the size of small peas. The mixture will be in particles and will not hold together. Spoon it into the plastic bag.

Holding the bag opening together with one hand, knead the mixture by pressing from the outside with the knuckles and heels of your hands, alternatively until the mixture holds together in one piece and feels slightly stretchy when pulled. Wrap the dough with the plastic wrap, flatten it into a disc and refrigerate for at least 45 minutes, preferably overnight.

For the Filling:

Add apples (and raisins if using) to a large bowl and toss with the cream, sugar, lemon juice, vanilla, cinnamon, and salt until apples are evenly coated. Let sit at room temperature for at least 1 hour or up to 2 hours.

For the Streusel Topping:

Stir all ingredients in bowl until no dry spots remain and mixture forms clumps. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Assemble & Bake:

Adjust oven rack to lower-middle and heat oven to 350 degrees F. Let chilled dough sit on counter to soften slightly, about 10 minutes. Roll dough into a 12-inch circle on a lightly floured counter. Loosely roll dough around rolling pin and gently unroll it onto a 9-inch pie plate, letting excess dough hang over edge. Ease dough into plate by gently lifting edge of dough with your hand while pressing into plate bottom with your other hand.

Trim overhang to 1/2″ beyond lip of plate. Tuck overhang under itself; folded edge should be flush with edge of plate. Crimp dough evenly around edge of plate using your fingers. Wrap dough-lined plate loosely in plastic and refrigerate until dough is firm, at least 30 minutes.

Place dough-lined plate on parchment or foil-lined (for easy clean up) rimmed baking sheet. Working with 1 large handful at a time, distribute apple mixture in plate, lightly pressing into even layer and filling in gaps before adding more. Take care not to mound apple mixture in center of plate. Pour the liquid from bowl into pie, up to 2/3 cup.

Break topping (it will harden in refrigerator) into pea-size crumbs and distribute evenly over apple mixture. Pat topping lightly to adhere.

Bake pie on sheet until top is golden brown and paring knife inserted in center meets no resistance, about 1 hour 10 minutes, rotating sheet halfway through baking. Let pie cool on wire rack for at least 4 hours or preferably overnight. Serve.


Keywords: Apple, Cream, Desserts, Fruit Dessert, Pennsylvania Dutch, Pie, streusel