- A good karma apple pie.
Grandma since a while has stopped worrying. She’s light, as she forgets things and looks at me emptily, as if she was lost. I love her very much and remember, often, of those things she used to cook: spaghetti rolls wrapped in fried eggplants, the sweetest tomato sauce and ricotta salata on top; or those char-grilled skewers, that quite perfect pasta al forno of hers with strings of long-cooked beef and hard boiled eggs. Between the stoves of my grandmothers there are all the scents and the kitchen techniques I have in my luggage; all that I have experimented, adapted, cloned.
The one thing I could never clone, the lost recipe, is the one thing that with its soft enigma has been chasing me for years; and that I have recently found back in the quiet pen of an elementary school’s teacher.
Mrs. Concetta had me tasting this specialty of hers: the apple pie. And it was so impressing to find the crumbly softness of those afternoons when grandma was waiting for friends and the weekly card games night, and she prepared it – and it was exactly the same – that I had to ask her to write the recipe for me, in a beautiful round and balanced handwriting.
450gr. White flour
1 bag baking powder
half a glass of milk
1 good lemon
3 beautiful yellow apples.
1) Peel the apples, split them in half lengthwise and cut out the pits. Cut them thinly without pushing your blade to the end; so for the slices to hold together at the bottom. Squeeze some lemon drops on top, so to prevent the apples from blackening.
2) Whisk eggs and sugar, add the melted butter, then milk and finally the sifted flour and baking powder. Keep whisking till smooth and homogeneous.
3) Pour the mix in a rounded tin with tall edges, “buttered and floured” (quote.)
4) Let the apple halves, dusted with a little cane sugar, sink into the dough: they will be guzzled down by the rising mixture keeping moisture and softness, caressing the palate as a comforting bite, childhood for gluttons.
5) Bake at 180° C for about 40 minutes. Check the cooking with a toothpick: pierce the cake softly, when the stick comes out clean it will be ready.
6) Let cool one hour at least. Come on, resist.
7) Slice and bite. A crumbly texture sinks in seas of softness, the slightly cooked apple gives in to the teeth with an embrace without opposing; warmth. Comfort. Sweetness.
You can have it plain or with a glass of milk. I’m enjoying it tonight with a beautiful Tainted Love black saison by Extraomnes; even though a glass of Casa Barone walnut liquor would be great; and I’m craving the astonishing 1111 malt liquor by Carrobiolo. After all, I’m not a child anymore…