When apples are peeled and especially when sliced, their attractive white colour will very quickly turn a 'not-so-attractive' brownish colour. This makes absolutely no difference to the taste, but 'looks' are important. The method described below therefore leaves the peeling and cutting of the apples to the last minute.
Step by step pictures on making the shortcrust pastry are shown below but you can also view our video above for a practical demonstration.
Recipe by David Marks.
Put the margarine and vegetable fat in a mixing bowl and pour in the flour. The yellow 'bricks' in the picture are margarine, the white bricks are the vegetable fat.
This stage should only take a minute or so but it's one of the joys of making apple pie.
Wrap the pastry ball in cling film and put it in the fridge to 'rest' for half an hour.
Put the dish over the rolled pastry to make sure it is about the correct size (see picture).
The idea is to pick up the rolled out pastry and put it in the dish to form the base of the apple pie.
Gently ease into the base of the dish and firm it round the sides.
Then trim off the excess pastry from the top. Do this with the 'blunt' side of a knife - the blunt side is far less likely to tear the pastry.
Turn your oven on now so that it's pre-heated ready to cook later on. Heat settings are 220°C / 425°F / Gas Mark 7.
Each quarter should produce roughly 8 to 10 slices. Accuracy is not so important. The thicker the slices, the more firm the apple mixture will be when it has been cooked.
Do this in three layers, scattering a third of the sugar on each layer.
Using water and a pastry brush (or your wet fingers)
dampen the top edge of the pastry. This will help the top pastry to attach firmly to it better.
Transfer the rolled out pastry to the top of the pie using the rolling pin in the same way described for the base pastry.
Using both hands, 'crimp' the pastry round the edge of the pie to obtain an attractive finish - enlarge photos 2 and 3 to see more clearly how we did it.
Lightly brush the top with a little milk to give it a light brown colour when cooked.