Saturday, October 25, 2014

Upside Down Pecan-Apple Pie, A Cane River Region Recipe!

Hello, everybody! The Fresh Pioneer is back and I have a very tasty recipe to celebrate book releases! (Yes, PLURAL.) First, I had a Love Inspired book release earlier this month.
And then there's The Pepper in the Gumbo which is up for preorder now! I really LOVED writing this book. Sort of You've Got Mail and 84, Charring Cross Road- with lots of Southern cooking and romance!
 Then this box showed up at my door and I got to hold my latest Austen Takes the South book in my hands!  Isn't she pretty!!!??? Releasing Nov. 11th!
So, when I was researching my new series set in Natchitoches, Louisiana, I needed a good cookbook. I asked my facebook friends and apparently this is THE cookbook for Louisiana. It's like the JOY OF COOKING down there. Everybody's got one, usually handed down. It was originally published in the 1950's and now you can buy it on Amazon. Love that!
Poor me, I had SO MUCH RESEARCH to do. And by research I meant cooking and eating. I decided not to include this recipe in the back of the first book in the series, but it caught my eye and I wanted to try it out. Upside down apple-pecan pie sounds interesting, doesn't it??

Bake at 350F for an hour.
4TBS butter
2/3 brown sugar
2/3 cup pecans
2 unbaked pie crusts
6 cups sliced apples
1 tbs lemon juice
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 TB flour
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

 There's Mr. Tin Pie Plate! We've missed you!!
 So combine the brown sugar and the butter and press into the bottom of the pan. This will melt and make a caramel under your pie.
 Press the pecans into the mix and you can make it fancy if you want.
Put the bottom crust over the mix, leaving a few inches over the sides.
 Like so.
 Put in the apple mixture. Mmmmmm....
By the way, these pies (I actually made two) come from the apples from our own trees. But these are special trees. We have a compost pile where we throw veggies and peels and such. My husband noticed a few seedlings had sprouted so he transplanted them into the corner of the yard. I didn't really pay attention to them. I think I noticed them a few times a year. Scrawny branches, tiny little stunted apples, the trees were no taller than my youngest child for years. And then this year, the apples grew BIGGER. I was so surprised! It took seven years for a little seed to give back another apple and even though I'd completely forgotten about those little trees, they were working hard the whole time. I imagine them saying to me now, "How you like THEM apples??" lol
 Put on the top layer an pinch closed the edge. This was a very juicy pie (and actually set off the fire alarm twice) so be sure to set something underneath to catch the drips.
 OK, here's the first pie and it smells AMAZING. But I'm not completely sold on it yet.
I'm going to attempt to turn over the pie into this deep dish. The entire family has crowded around to watch. (Mostly because I set off the fire alarm and they're huddled together for warmth while the smoke leaves the house.)
 Here's the second pie and although it doesn't look fantastically pretty, there's nothing like hot aple pie right from the oven.
 OK. It actually wasn't that hard to flip. I'm wondering if the caramel burned. I'm skeptical.
 Moment of truth, with lots of caramel sauce drizzled on it.
And some whipped topping. The verdict was..... *drum roll* The family declares this THE BEST PIE EVER.
And since I usually post a kid pic but they were all outside playing by the time I sat down to write this, I'll put this one here...
My oldest always reads to the younger kids every night and this photo really made me laugh. At first I thought of Cerberus, the three headed dog. And then someone said it looked like Huginn and Muninn, the Norse mythological crows that perched on Odin's shoulders. Lol.
 So there you go! I hope you're all having a wonderful and productive fall!


  1. Virginia, I'm DROOLING for those caramel nuts on top of a pie!!! Yum!

    Those are gorgeous apples. How thrilling that the tree came from a compost pile. I think there's a big lesson in there somewhere. :)

  2. Caramel and apple pie. I thought my DIL's version of apple pie was great but this might top it. But when you say whipped topping, are you saying Cool Whip or the real whipped cream? There is a war over that in our house.

    1. Julie, I would do both, just to make sure everybody is happy! My husband thinks Cool Whip is the scariest thing on the planet, so I usually just whip some cream with sugar. (I personally think Cool Whip is TASTY. But hey... I can eat the real stuff just as easily!

  3. that looks delish! cant believe it all fit in that pie pan!

  4. You make some strange looking delicious pies. Not that I am complaining. I don't make pies. But I am stunned by some of them. Great picture of your dtr reading to the littles. Love it.

    1. You know, this was tasty but definitely not a showpiece. I have a hard enough time as it is making something visually appealing!

  5. Congratulations on your release. It is gorgeous.

    1. It is! I mean, they both are! They all are! lol.