This post has two geneses: as Fall rolls around to Northern Colorado (37 degrees yesterday, what?!), TC requested an apple pie, after I made Key Lime Pie a few weeks ago.
One of the two things I didn't do before I left DC was to make VGF pie with my friend Andi. This is for you, Andi, since it's unlikely I'll be back in DC to bake pie with you anytime soon.
I make probably a pie a month, maybe every two months. There are so many delicious combinations waiting to be veganised and de-glutenised! This particular recipe differs from my first VGF apple pie iteration because instead of roasting or cooking down the apples, I covered them in lemon juice and sugar. In a few hours, the hygroscopic sugar leeched about half a cup of liquid out of the apples.
When you get down to it, there's not much difference between regular pie technique and VGF pie technique. Following TC's advice, I froze a stick of Earth Balance vegan butter and grated it into the flour for the crust...with a microplane, which was not following his advice. The margarine won't get rock hard, but it'll be firmer than refrigerated EB. I'd never done that before, but I made really flaky crust, as advertised.
The use of xanthan gum in the crust is key for mimicking gluten in wheat flour. The crust doesn't need to rest very long before rolling because there's no gluten to develop. The vodka trick for piecrust (substituting vodka or cider vinegar for a tablespoon of ice water) also doesn't apply here since there's no gluten. This recipe was exceptionally straightforward to modify. The crust isn't as cohesive as traditional crust, but then again, it's never going to be without an egg or a pile of of xanthan gum. My crust took almost nine tablespoons of water; it's also very dry here in Colorado. Nevertheless, the taste is there, and my non-vegan, non-gluten-free testing panel of neighbours appreciated the pie.
My use of coconut sugar is purely stylistic; it doesn't spike my blood sugar as much as organic sugar or straight white sugar. Organic sugar is vegan as it's not processed through animal bone char like regular sugar is.
My choice of fruit was also based on preference: any soft baking apple will do, just like with traditional baking. I used organic gala and golden delicious apples because that's what was on sale at Sprouts.
Best served with nondairy vanilla ice cream!
The other thing I meant to do before I left DC? See Carla of Whip My Assets compete in a roller derby competition. I said I would and I aim to keep my word. So I'll be checkin' the DC Rollergirls schedule when I visit DC again.