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Exploring, creating, & reflecting one day at a time

Today a friend of mine that I haven’t seen all summer finally came back to Berkeley. I called him a few nights ago when my friends and I had a family dinner, asking him to come and not realizing that he wasn’t back yet. He told me he was coming on Wednesday and that he would like some fresh apple pie to greet him upon his arrival. So naturally, I couldn’t disappoint.
I woke up a bit stressed, thinking about how understocked our kitchen was foodwise, or so I thought. Luckily, my awesome housemate Brandt is a baker too, and I’ve discovered that he’s actually loaded our kitchen up pretty well. Because he’s awesome.So pretty much the only thing I had to buy for this pie was a bunch of granny smith apples.

I haven’t baked an apple pie since last Thanksgiving, so I was a little rusty, and to top it off, a food processor is one of the only appliances we DON’T have in this house. Brandt, once again, came to the rescue, lending me his pastry blender, but I can’t even remember the last time I made a crust manually, so that task seemed a bit daunting. In the end, the crust came out a-okay and the only other problem I really encountered was our ancient, industrial-strength oven, which apparently takes a very long time to preheat. Noted.

Aside from the preheating issues, it’s good to know I’ll be able to continue baking up here without a hitch, really.

We invited a few of our friends over and each had a hot piece of pie with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, pre-dinner. I think the pie served as a good treat for the last day of summer before classes start. And tomorrow I have the joy of attending an 8 AM physics lecture. It was fun while it lasted.




  • 12 T. unsalted butter (cold)
  • 3 c. all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 T. sugar
  • 1/3 c. shortening (cold)
  • 8 tbsp. ice water


  1. Dice butter and place it back in the fridge to keep it cold.
  2. Combine flour, salt, & sugar in a medium sized mixing bowl.  Add butter & shortening, cutting both in with pastry blender or food processor until the chunks of butter are about the size of a pea.
  3. Add ice water and continue cutting until the dough begins to come together.
  4. Dump dough onto a lightly floured surface and split in half. Form both halves into balls and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least half an hour before using.



  • 3/4 c. sugar
  • 1 tbsp. flour
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • dash of salt
  • 3.5 c. peeled, chopped apples
  • 16 oz. apple sauce
  • 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 2 Tbsp. butter, chopped


  1. Combine sugar, flour, cinnamon, & salt. Stir in apples, applesauce, and lemon juice. Spoon into crust & dot with butter.
  2. Cover with top pie crust and bake for 10 minutes at 425. Then reduce temperature to 350 and bake for another 45 minutes, or until crust begins to brown.

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