LOOKING for: Help - apple pies (granny smith) going watery

stinkydavisApril 29, 2008

I just made apple pies with granny smiths, a few days apart and both times the pies ended up way too tart and with a huge amount of free liquid. Does anyone know what's up?

I never use thickeners such as cornstarch, gels, etc. because I hate the gummy tetxture. But I've never had this problem before.

Sure, some apple pies are a little wetter than others, and peach pie is just wet, but this time I used a turkey baster to remove liquid and got a large water glass full. And the pie is still wet.

I have always used granny smith, and to my memory these were never known as the juciest apples.

This week for the first pie I used a 10"-11" stainless pie pan, 9 apples and 1-1/2 cups of sugar, spices, a few drops of lemon juice, and a little butter. I think that's a lot of sugar but the pie was, well, sour. For the second pie, yesterday, I added 2 cups of sugar, no lemon juice, and it's still very tart and just as watery.

Any ideas anyone?

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It might just be the apple you used. You can slice & cook the apples a bit to see how much liquid comes out, then drain, cool & put into the pie crust & bake as usual or mix the apple slices with the sugar & spices & let sit a bit to see if that draws out the liquid some if you don't want to add any flour or cornstarch.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2008 at 5:38PM
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Apple pie is never engraved in stone....you have to assess the apples to get it perfect. Taste the apples...sweet? cut back on the sugar....tart? Add a little more. Tasteless? add more cinnamon or some grated lemon rind and perhaps some vanilla, crisp and juicy, mix a tablespoon or so of flour with the sugar and cinnamon before you toss it with the apples....and maybe add a little bit of tiny chips of butter.
Unless you are using canned apples, there is no one perfect recipe that never considers the individual apples.
Linda C

    Bookmark   April 29, 2008 at 9:02PM
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The apple pie recipe I always use calls for 2T of flour and dot with butter before putting on the top crust. Always good.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2008 at 8:31AM
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Use a different type of apple.

My mom is quite famous for her pies. Any type of pies! She uses Minut Tapioca as a thickener (about 2-3 tablespoons, depending on how "thick" you like it).

IMO, you need SOMETHING to thicken the juices a little or it's too "watery".

    Bookmark   April 30, 2008 at 9:44PM
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Ginger, yah, thanks, I thought very briefly of pre-cooking the apples but didn't really want to. I guess I've done it in the past - years ago. Thanks for the reminder.

Lindac, you, too, have a good reminder that this kind of cooking is more art than science and needs flexibility. Still, in my memory, Granny Smith apples have always been pretty much the same - tart, stiff, etc. Taking your tip, I could have changed the second pie to account for the extra juice.

Roselin32 and khandi, likewise you have a tip that may be necessary - but I've been doing this for a long time and have never have added thickeners. May have to change.

I appreciate your thoughts which got me thinking. Today I remembered that in the past I always layered apple slices in the shell, sprinkling each layer with sugar and cinnamon. This made rather compact pies. Last week I mixed the sugar and apples in a bowl and dumped it in the pie shell. What this did is to create a pile of fruit which probably didn't collapse much, so the juice cooked out to the bottom while most of the apples - firm granny smith - stayed in a pile.

I'll try again.

    Bookmark   May 2, 2008 at 5:35PM
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Also, if you mix the apples with the sugar and let them stand before baking, the apples will "juice out"...to use my grandmother's term.
I make a cake that has no liquid in it....but you mix the apples and sugar, let it stand and use that for the liquid.
Perhaps you got a phone call while you were making the pie.
Linda C

    Bookmark   May 2, 2008 at 6:40PM
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america test kitchen, did an apple pie and cooked the filling a little to release the pectin

    Bookmark   May 28, 2008 at 1:14PM
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I love to use yellow delicious in my pie. And always some flour for thickening.

    Bookmark   November 7, 2008 at 4:04PM
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