Aside from the Sierra Beauties, the other thing that makes this pie distinctively San Franciscan is that I served it up with Bi-Rite Creamery's salted caramel ice cream. The ice cream is quite intense, so garnish sparingly.
A note on apple peels: when I'm in a big hippie hurry, I don't peel my pie apples. That's just fine for your traditional dry, firm pie apples and your favorite hungry farmer, but it simply won't do for creamy pie apples and San Francisco epicures. The leathery bits of skin will be obnoxiously obvious in the otherwise velvet-soft pie. To balance out the lack of wholesome peels, I've decided that apple pies are much better with MINIMAL sugar. This one has 3 puny tablespoons. I eat it for breakfast at 5 a.m. before cycling off to work at Bi-Rite.
San Francisco Apple PiePreheat the oven to 450 degrees.
one unbaked pie shell
another pastry round for the top
In a large bowl, toss together:
5 medium sierra beauty apples
(peeled, sliced, and cored)
3 T. sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
several gratings of nutmeg
1/2 tsp. salt
Let the apples and sugar macerate while you get the pastry ready: leave an overhanging rim on the bottom crust, and cut pretty patterns out of the center of the top crust.
Arrange the apples in the pastry shell, dab with bits of butter, cover with the top pastry round, and trim it flush with the rim. Then fold the bottom crust's overhang back over the edge of the top crust and flute.
Bake until the crust starts to gild, then reduce the oven temperature to 350 and bake some more until thick juices bubble out of the center holes.