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What do you do with a left-over of sweet pastry and almond paste, and three Macintosh apples which have been brooding in the lowest drawer of your refrigerator and are begging you for attention? You invent a new dessert! I call this dessert the “Three Kings Apple Pie”. The reason for the name is the filling of almond paste which I plucked out of the recipe for the “Galette des Rois”, the classic French January cake, celebrating the visit of the three Magi to the little baby Jesus in Bethlehem.

Three Kings Apple Pie

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: French
Keyword: Apple, apple pie, french recipe

Equipment

  • Long pie mold with a removable bottom (14” x 4 1/2”)

Ingredients

Sweet Pastry (this recipe is good for two pies. Freeze half of it for future use.)

  • 2 ¾ cups all purpose flour
  • 5 ½ oz. unsalted butter at room temperature
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • pinch of salt

Almond Paste (this recipe is good for two pies. Freeze half of it for future use.)

  • 4 oz. unsalted butter (a stick) at room temperature
  • 1 ½ cups cups almond flour (can be bought already made in the supermarket)
  • ½ cup sugar
  • tsp. almond extract
  • 2 eggs (beaten)

Apples

  • 3 medium size Mackintosh apples

Instructions

  • To start, you take out your long pie mold with a removable bottom (14” x 4 1/2” ).

Sweet Pastry Instructions

  • In a food processor, mix the flour, butter, sugar and salt until the dough starts to come together.
  • Add the beaten eggs and if too thick, a tbsp. of cold water. Pulse one or two more times.
  • Take the dough out of the food processor, form a ball with your hands and cut it in half. Wrap one half in plastic film and store it in the freezer.
  • Take the other half and immediately flatten it gently with your fingers on the bottom and sides of the buttered pie mold so that it covers it all.
    Sweet Pastry Crust
  • Let the dough cool for 1/2 hour in the refrigerator and dry-bake it in a 350 degree pre-heated oven for 15 min.

Almond Paste Instructions

  • In the food processor, blend the butter, almond flour, sugar and almond extract until it comes together as a smooth paste.
  • Add the beaten eggs.
  • With a spatula, spread the almond paste on the bottom of the pie crust, leaving a small edge around the crust.

Getting the Apples Ready

  • I like Mackintosh apples, they are sweet and for this pie, perfect because when frying, they soften very quickly.
  • Peel, quarter and core three medium size apples (any apple will do really. For a less soft apple, the frying will take longer. For a Granny Smith, which is really tart, add more sugar on top of the pie before putting it under the broiler). If some quarters are too wide, cut them in half.
  • Dispose the quarters in a frying pan coated with regular oil, over medium to low heat. Let the apples soften (To make sure they are soft enough, poke each piece gently with a knife: The flesh should offer no resistance). Add a little bit of oil when needed.
  • The flesh of the apple will change color from pale to golden brown but it should not be burned. Turn the quarters from side to side so each takes on a nice color.
  • Once soft, remove to a plate to cool down. When all the pieces are cooked, dispose them one by one on the almond paste with the design of your choice, utilizing all the apples.
  • Bake covered loosely with aluminum foil at 375 degree in a pre-heated oven for 20 min.
  • Change the oven from bake to broil, sprinkle a tablespoon of sugar over the top of the apples (more if they are tart apples) and place under the broiler for a few seconds until they take on a nice slightly darker color.
  • And voilà!

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