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Hedgehog Apple Pie

The look of this pie is similar to “hedgehog” or Hasselback potatoes, hence the name.

Hedgehog Apple Pie

Hedgehog Apple Pie

The recipe is a bit similar to this one of Deb Perelman’s (aka Smitten Kitchen), and she says she got it from Alice Waters, who says it was actually created by Jacques Pepin. Looks like I’ve made it before, for Mark’s birthday in 2012, but today I decided to record my version.

For the crust:

  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 2 TBLS sugar (I used vanilla sugar)
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 stick, 8 TBLS, unsalted butter
  • 1 TBLS vegetable shortening
  • 3 – 4 TBLS cold water

Measure the flour, sugar, and salt into the bowl of a stand mixer, a food processor, or a mixing bowl. Cut in the butter and shortening with the paddle attachment, the steel blade, or a pastry blender and your fingers, until you have a mealy-looking mixture. Dribble in the water while mixing, just until large clumps form. Turn the dough out onto  floured surface, gather into a ball, and form into a disk. Wrap in plastic wrap or wax paper, and chill for at least 30 minutes, or up to two days. (Freeze for longer storage).

For the filling:

  • 3 – 4 apples
  • 2 TBLS flour
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 5 TBLS sugar
  • 2 TBLS butter

Glaze & topping:


Roll out the crust as large as you can get it. Cut a 12-inch circle (I traced a pizza pan, that I was going to put the tart tin on to bake anyhow), and fit it into a 9-inch tart tin with a removeable bottom, letting the edges flop over. Mix the flour and 3 TBLS of the sugar, and spread it in the bottom of the crust. Peel the apples, cut each one in half, and core it with a melon baller. Put the apple halves flat side down on a cutting board, and slice them thinly. Arrange the apples in the crust, pressing down to fan them slightly. Melt the butter, and brush or pour it over the apples. Sprinkle on the remaining 3 TBLS sugar, and flop th edges of the crust over, crimping as necessary. Bake at 375° for about 45 minutes until browned and bubbling. Run the tart under the broiler if it needs more color.

While the tart is baking, boil the cidar down until it is reduced to about 1/4 cup. Pour the reduced cidar over the apples as soon as you take the tart out of the oven.

Serve with vanilla ice cream or crème fraîche.


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