A trusted and easy apple pie recipe we have been making for three generations! Flaky crust, fresh apples baked in the pie make for the best tasting pie!
Preheat the oven to 375 for 30 minutes before baking. Adjust the racks so one rack is on the bottom of the oven (lowest setting) and one is in the middle of the oven.
It is best to bake the pie on a thin cookie sheet to prevent any overflow of filling from the pie onto the oven. You may also use a sheet of foil placed under the bottom of the pie plate to catch drips.
Place flour and salt in a large bowl. Toss together.
Using a pastry cutter, cut shortening into flour mixture until mixture resembles small peas or small pea size pieces.
Add the water all at once pouring evenly around the flour in bowl. Gently fold the flour mixture together with a fork until the dough begins to form a ball. At this point, the dough will be quite sticky. If needed, add a little flour so the dough is not sticky to the touch.
Flour the pastry mat or countertop generously. I use about 1/4-1/3 cup of flour. Split the dough in half and roll out half of the dough into a circle, about 2 inches larger than the edge of the pie plate.
Place the rolled out dough into the pie plate. I fold the dough in half and then transfer to the pie plate. After the dough is in the pie plate, unfold and evenly place in the plate, making sure the dough completely rests against the bottom corners of the pie plate. Roll out the second part of dough and let sit while the filling is being made. The dough may be placed in the fridge while filling is being made. No need to cover.
Peel, core and slice apples. Set peeled apples in a large bowl. Trim off any excess core or peel if needed.
Add sugar, spices, salt, flour, lemon juice and vanilla to the apples and toss well.
Fill the bottom crust with apple filling mixture. Pour any of the remaining juices from the apple filling evenly over the apples in the pie plate.
Cut up butter into small pieces and distribute evenly on top of apples in crust.
Cover the apples with the rolled out top crust. Seal edges of the pie, and cut slits in crust to allow steam to escape.
Gently brush beaten egg* (optional) on top of crust and sprinkle with sugar.
Bake at 375 for about one hour or until the top and bottom crusts are golden and the apples are bubbly.