See, I did make treats during the holidays! I don't eat fruit pies. I have never liked them. Except for the apple pie. I love apple pie. But I cannot eat a store bought apple pie. It has to be homemade. In my opinion, it's the crust that makes or breaks it. I've tried a variety of crusts, but I always come back to a basic. My mom's pie crust recipe.
1 cup flour
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup shortening
1/4 cup COLD water
Combine flour and salt. Add shortening. Use pastry blender or 2 knives in criss cross pattern to crumble mixture until fine. Add cold water and mix until well moistened. Form into ball and let rest for 10 minutes. Roll out. Makes 1 pie crust.
6-8 cups Golden Delicious apples, peeled and sliced very thin
1/3 cup fresh lemon juice (if you are using granny smith or a very tart apple you can omit)
2/3 cup sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
Gently toss sliced apples in a large bowl with lemon juice. Combine sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle over apples and toss until well coated. Set aside. Make crumb topping.
1/2 cup cold butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 cup flour
Combine ingredients in a bowl and cut together using the same method as when making the pie crust until you have pea-sized crumbs.
Place pie shell on top of foil-lined cookie sheet. Pour apple mixture into pie shell and then top with the crumb topping. This will be very high and spilling over. Just be careful to keep it all on top. Once it is cooked, it will shrink down significantly. Also, most apple pies have flour or cornstarch included in the apple mixture to thicken it up, but I always leave it out. I prefer the taste difference it makes. It does cause your apple pie to have more liquid. This doesn't bother me, but it does thicken up the longer it sits out.