I like apple pie—especially fresh baked with ice cream—but if asked to prioritize all the desserts in the world, apple pie would pretty far down on my list of favourites. I was hoping Momofuku’s apple pie would be transcendental, but it was just a fried apple pie. A good fried apple pie, but apple pie nonetheless.
Chang’s goal with the fried apple pie was to evoke a memory of McDonald’s apple pie and I think he succeed. The filling was sufficiently gooey and while it wasn’t as oozy as McDonald’s, it had similar flavours.
The mold for Momofuku’s apple pie is hard to find. I picked up a couple on my last trip to New York; it was the only place I could find them.
I ended up making the dough twice. At first I used the cup measures in the book with the suggested amount of water in cups and ended up with goo. Chang describes the dough as “gummy” and “wetter and more overworked than you’d ever want a traditional pie or tart dough to be,” so I thought the goo would undergo a magical transformation in the fridge. An hour later, the dough was still a pile of goo.
Since I was making a half recipe, I figured I might have scaled the recipe incorrectly. Just to be sure, I asked Mike to re-scale for me. He suggested using the weight measures instead, and I’m glad we did! The amount of water in cups was totally incorrect–the weight measure of water was less than half of what it asks for in cups. (If you have the book and you’re wondering, it should be 1/2 cup of water for the whole recipe, not 1 and 1/4)
With the correct amount of water, the dough came together quickly and easily. A quick hour in the fridge and I was ready for pie making. The dough was sticky, but a little dusting of flour made it easy to work with. If you’re obsessed with the shape of Ko’s apple pies then little rectangular tart pans is what you need, but I think this recipe would work equally well as a kind of fried pop tart.
I usually don’t have any qualms about deep frying, but when you’re putting a solid frozen pie in hot oil, you should be careful. The pie stays in the oil for 4-6 minutes and while it’s in there, keep an eye on it. I managed to burn one so badly we couldn’t eat it. Thankfully, second one turned out golden and crisp.
I really liked the sour cream ice cream with the pie. The miso butterscotch, I found was a bit too rich for me. I still think the miso butterscotch would work on a savoury dish, but I didn’t like it so much with the cinnamonny apples.
I guess I’ll have to keep looking for that transcendental apple pie. Any suggestions?