This is Smitten Kitchen’s apple pie, scaled down ever so slightly to fit my 23 cm (9 inch) pie tin. I used 5 medium eating apples that were a mix of Russets, Royal Gala, and Pink Lady varieties that my parents brought back from a trip to Kent –fortuitous, because they are also good baking apples!
My local shop didn’t have any nutmeg or allspice; the closest I could find was mixed spice. In the end, this was also quite lucky. Mixed spice, in British cooking, refers to a particular combination of ground cassia or cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice, possibly others. Mine had cassia, coriander seed, caraway, nutmeg, ginger, and cloves. I kept the main spoonful of cinnamon and added a little mixed spice for dimension, hoping that it wouldn’t turn out like a large and strange mince pie, but the result was a delight: it’s warm and fragrant in just the right way.
I’m taking half of the pie to my parents tomorrow. Let’s hope that there won’t be an accident where I inhale the slices as I wander past the kitchen…
ETA 15/10/12: the full recipe is up on MouthLondon.