Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Masquerade~And 2 Recipes~

My daughter  had a Halloween dinner for our family..the Alphabet boys love getting dressed up and they can pick and chose great costumes straight out of their closets:)
I was going to be a chef..and Jacques a baker..that's how many costumes we have:)

Well we changed our minds..I have a cape with spiders all over it.. this mask..the gloves ..the spider ring and green nail polish..EEK:)

But Jacques was the scary one..w/ a Dracula cape and fork and the ugliest scariest mask I have ever seen..
We practiced it on the kids yesterday..They love him so much we can't have them being afraid..
But Noah..who had not seen grandad  kept saying take it off! Take it off..and so he did:)

I wanted to show you that those little carved pumpkins look cute with tea lights:)

It's been so dark here the past few days..difficult to get bright happy photos..
I found a perfect little hostess gift for her~

A photo album from HOME SENSE.. that says My Little Pumpkin.. she took so many photos of Noah w/ Pumpkins and at Le Jardin Botanique..for the festival of lanterns and pumpkins..
Can you believe our luck? After years in the dark w/out commercially proven stores like Michael's and Home Sense..we now have both.
These stores are amazing for gifts.
Mind you I prefer quirky..different little stores..brocantes..artists galleries..but they are not plentiful close to our home..brocantes even further:)One day again!

I tried a new appetizer for dinner w/ a healthy bowl of soup..to bring..but felt it was easier to bring something that does not need  watchful baking..
However..it's on my keeper list now..So I thought I would share with you~

The recipe came from a little color flyer in one of my magazines..
This recipe makes 20..I halved the recipe for Jacques and I..
So easy..cute..and good.
I would make one change and use garlic butter where the recipe calls for plain butter

La Recette~

Mozza-Olives Pizza Twists

1 1/4 cups warm milk,about 130 F(55c)
1/2 cup melted butter divided
2 tbsps golden corn syrup
2 packages(8grams each) Pizza yeast(I used reg)
3 cups all purpose flour ap.
1 tsp salt
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup chopped green olives(I used Kalamata)

1/4 cup each of chopped green onions and sun dried tomatoes.
poppy seeds optional

Feel free to use whatever fillings you like..I would love roasted peppers I know it

1.Stir milk,1/4 cup of butte corn syrup and ueast in a bowl and let satnd ap 10minutes or until foamy.Sir in flour and salt until mixture forms a sticky dough,
2.On a lightly floured surface knead dough 20 -30 times..until smooth and elastic.Let stand 10 mins.
Meanwhile preheat oven to 400F(200c).Toss cheese with olives and sun dried tomatoes..
3.Stretch or roll dough  into a 12x16 rectangle..cut in half making 2 12 x 8 rectangles.
Sprinkle and even mixture of filling lengthwise over half of each rectangle.Fold over   to enclose filling making 2 12x 4 inch rectangles.Press down lightly to adhere filling.
4.Line 2 baking sheets w/ parchment..Cut each rectangle into 10 equal strips.
Twirl each strip twice and place on baking sheet..Brush with remaining melted butter..sprinkle with poppy seeds.
5.Bake 16 minutes rotating sheets halfway..or until twists are golden on the bottom..Serve warm.~

  To bring to the party..I made the baked feta I have mentioned before..You prepare everything at home..and they just pop it in the oven until the cheese is warm and soft and the toppings become fragrant.
It's so easy..and serves many.I made a loaf of bread to accompany..found some cute printables online..Thank you Printabelle.
I found more cute Printables here..but I had already printed mine~

and I made this recipe from  MenuTuristico:) Hers caught my eye.. Her blog is lovely..and the English recipes are so appreciated!I made mini muffin hearts and the only difference..was that I sliced mine open and added this red pepper jelly because I know my girls love it.

It was a lovely get together..he kids had so much fun..the weather was bleak and grey...BOO!..there was a cookie decorating event after dinner at the table..and my daughter had also filled four buckets that were Halloween pumpkins filled with different things..(blue jello..creamed corn..pickled onions..I forget the fourth!)  and put lids on top  so only their hand could get in to feel and they had to guess..lots of shrieks and laughs:)

She made darling Candy Corn parfaits,,piped into glasses..fajitas..all kid friendly food..The children each got a wonderful Halloween book w/ a sticker of Noah amongst pumpkins inside.
And lady Giuliana was a rock star with her dad at the end of the evening.♥She sang Adèle for us:)

Have a nice Halloween to those who celebrate~
Most of all..everyone in sandy's path..Stay safe~

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Fifi , Romantic Country~And Lucas♥

Have you visited Fifi recently?
She's so busy..she's involved with all her magazines and MOVING..moving to Mystic  CT.
I was trying to remember which movies were made there apart from Mystic Pizza..And a whole list came up~
They will be lucky to have her~
The latest issue of Romantic Country is out~I do love that magazine..

Such pretty pics..ideas..links..stories..
I was pleased and flattered that Fifi included my take on fun little Christmas stockings..

Thank you Fifi..everything looks so much better after you have touched it:)
It is so nice to be able to contribute..I learn something new every time..
Like this blue background..after I made the stocking and sent her the photos..she said why not try a blue background..?
Look..It's just right..Never would I have picked blue.
She just knows what works.
Merçi Fifi encore une fois.
She has a new magazine coming out ..
If you visit you will hear all about it..and see little snippets .
She's a master at BEAU..making things always looking so right and pretty.

Which brings me to this darling letter I received in the mail..with a self-addressed stamped envelope for a reply..to his school:)

Lucas is our eldest grandson.  He is 7.We fell on our knees and cried when he came to Florida by plane 6 yrs ago and walked towards us  at the airport..We had left 2 weeks before..and he was still crawling.. beautifully I might add..but crawling..two weeks later they take the plane.. we meet them..and he walks towards us!:)
Fall on our knees:)

We met him first ..of the 4 alphabet boys.. ~
Un vrai coup de ♥
He still is..

They all are now..but he still is .It never leaves us.
Imagine my sheer elation at receiving this letter in the mail..
Even the ARRIÈRE  GRAND -MÈRE  cracked me up..
This is what the letter said)

Friday,October 19th 2012.

Dear Great Grandmother;
I would like to know if there was a park at your school.
I would like to know if you had running water.
Where was your school?
I love you very much.
Your grandson Lucas.

I responded right away:) and his letter is stuck to my fridge.
I did specify ..that I was 58..  his grandmother(nana).:).not great grandmother.:).that indeed I had running water..a play area:)..and WALKED many blocks to school:)
That I loved getting his letter..and that I loved him Gros Gros Gros comme le ciel.

It's mailed back to his school already.

These are the moments:)

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

On The Menu~

  What frightfully good for you thing could we make?
Perhaps a salad?

I think these could please young and old alike:)

Just empty out a lovely little orange and carve(much easier than a pumpkin..)
Make a salad you enjoy..In this case I used mostly arugula and spinach..some green onions..the orange:)And made a balsamic vinaigrette adding some juice from the orange..slivered almonds were an afterthought:)

The adorable smaller pumpkin you see..well they are called pumpkins on a stick..My friend had some in a vase..and let me leave w/ a branch and 2 dear little apples.

They are adorable..
I hope to find a few branches myself next year..
They are miniatures..of the real thing..
I get impressed by things like this♥

I just love PicMonkey too♥
The easiest way to decorate!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Pickled Beets♥

One thing my mom made religiously:)  ..pickled beets..Jacques' mom also..
Having purchased those lovely colorful beets for salads etc..I decided to pickle these..
It's been so long since I have pickled them..I had to go to Les Recettes Du Québec..happily..they are Ricardo's recipe also:)

It's perfect weather for doing this..a few days were absolutely GLORIOUS..  I finished planting the tulips..and admired the perfect masterpiece of fall foliage..
Takes your breath away it does.
Even on rainy days..

We have no grass left as you can see..until we mow up and or blow/gather the leaves ..then it will be the most brilliant green..compared to the most brownish hue of this late summer....
We look out every day and say..Isn't it beautiful? Till the leaves..leave us..then..it is positively barren until the snow comes..
Anyways..pickled beets are such a nice condiment..  especially..in my mom's and Jacques' moms households way back when with tourtière~
So I pickled a few pots..and enjoyed looking at them..as their colors match the scenery to a "T"..
So easy to make..and nothing like canned pickled beets!

La Recette~

10 lbs beets
1 cup of water (reserved cooking water..strained)
2 tbsps coarse salt
2 1/2 cups of sugar
5 cups white vinegar

Boil the beets for ap 30-45 mins until fork tender..reserve 1 cup of the cooking liquid(strained)
 Drain..Peel and slice..or quarter..as you wish..
place in pre -sterilized msaon jars
cook on medium high heat the 1 cup of reserved water..salt..sugar and vinegar until the sugar is all dissolved..
Pour into your Mason jars topping the beets..Seal.

I made the liquid mixture as I peeled etc the beets..
Recipe says it makes 4 1 liter jars..I used some of this and some of that:)
Lovely to have in stock~:)

Thursday, October 18, 2012

La Vie En Rose~Trop cute~

I fell for these when I saw them on the internet..

Little sablés ..but different from my other stamps..as  I did here..or the ones that you can change the name..  like we did with the Brigitte Cookie cutter..or the Williams Sonoma ones~or the HOME MADE ones:)

This one..comes in a small adorable package.. with the stamp(tampon)..and a mini cookbook for what they say are "La Vraie Recette De Sablés~"

2 days after ordering..Amazon.ca (Français),had delivered it to my door with my 2013 Mary Engelbreight Calendar~
Top quality..Hachette/Marabout 2012.
Un coup de ♥ for me..

Above..the first recipe sitting on our friend's foto of the Eiffel tower:)are 3 of the Pink ones I made..they were supposed to have lemon curd sandwiched in between..but we just wanted sablés~

They are good.. 
I made 1/3 of the recipe..and I could have used far less red coloring..but they looked so rose bonbon..I decided they would work..

very good with a cup of Gunpowder Green Tea~

We are hooked on green tea in the AM..
A cup of Nespresso at our daughter's in the afternoon w/ the rich foam..is equally as good..if not better:)

So here is the recipe I used from the wee book that comes with the stamp:

La Recette~

Sablés Roses~

200g flour
170 g almond flour
250g butter
120 g sugar
3 egg yolks
8 drops of red coloring
1  cuillère à café of baking powder(I use tsp as the equivalence..but you will find many definitions:)
1 pinch of salt..

Mix all the dry ingredients..then add the butter(chopped) and rub with your fingers ..to combine all..quickly add the yolks and red coloring..combine until you form a supple dough..
Roll dough out between parchment paper  to 3-4 mm thickness..
Refrigerate at least 1 hr..

Preheat oven to 180 Celcius..

Now..here's what I did..I pressed my tampon(well floured..never greased)..into the   very chilled dough....then cut around w/ a round cookie cutter the size ..more   here..of the tampon:)..then chilled again..before baking for 10-13 mins..they crisp up after baking:)

There are 5 little recipes in the mini book..
I am sure I will make all 5..and more that I can find on the net..
the 1/3 recipe made at least 10~

Love these little "trucs"  as we say..

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Ghoulishly Good~Dorie's Allspice Muffins~

Dorie Greenspan's Allspice Muffins~
I got the recipe from my book: Baking..From My Home to Yours~...At the beginning..Page..16...

They're delicious..after an afternoon of putting more gardens to bed..I knew these could hit the spot~
Jacques and I are no longer "des petits enfants".....but I bought these cute Wilton wrappers with my daughter one day and thought..well..let's use a few:)
The weather has been magical the last few days..but.. we expect rain:( ..(lots of it..Good for the bulbs I planted..and more stitching indoors..)..but I know this means many of the leaves will fall even more..and soon be mowed into the lawn..or tarped away~
Our area is beautiful at this time of year..
I remember driving up this street over 30 yrs ago..bringing the girls to their piano lessons and I thought..there is no prettier street..

11 yrs ago..a lot became available and we moved here..I know there are prettier streets..areas..etc..but moving day..Oct ..that many yrs ago..w/ classical music in my car..bringing yet one more carload of:" I just can't live without these..things "..to our new home..I believed in all those words.."there is no prettier street"..♥
Living right across the street from one of our daughter's..kittie corner..as they are down the equally beautiful..and quieter lane..has made the street even more beautiful to us~
Fall is gorgeous in QC..even with ghostly visions~:)
And all those leaves to pick up:)..we are minutes walk to a small quaint sleepy town..and close to great shopping now since a nearby town has seen a boom in population:)  Not here..but driveable for me..along the picturesque waterway..MICHAEL's is there:)And Omer De Serres etc..
Ok back to the recipe:)

I think I'll add a link I found instead of typing it out..is that ok? I did find the recipe..chez moi..in my book..but in lieu of badly typing out a recipe..

here goes....The Brown Eyed Baker.....I picked a blog out of a witch's hat:)
 The photos and recipe are spot on:)Lovely~
OOPS..I  clicked publish..I will be quiet for at least one week now I promise!

Friday, October 12, 2012

Beauty and The Beet~

It really did..small little white snowflakes dancing around with the falling leaves..I know..I was at the kitchen window preparing lunch~
Friday..October 12th ,2012..No accumulation..but snow..First fire in the fireplace..will surely be tonight♥
And a warm beet ,feta and spinach salad~
My daughter had been mentioning she loves beet and goat cheese salad..I love beets..and thought ..why not try and make one with things you have on hand?
Had beets..feta..walnuts,spinach..

I roasted the 3 beets skin on in foil..drizzled with EVOO and salt and pepper for a little over 1 hr at 400 F.
Meanwhile I toasted walnuts in the oven..
and prepared a white balsamic vinaigrette..in which I put..the balsamic..some EVOO..one finely chopped garlic clove..ad some sugar..s and p too..
Layered the  spinach..crumbled the feta..added the warm peeled and sliced beets..sprinkled with the nuts and then drizzled with the dressing..VERY GOOD.

Posting now in case you are having fall company this weekend..:)
Aren't beets beautiful?♥

Mint would have added another dimension....but I ripped all that out yesterday and it's in buried somewhere with the rest of the beds we did yesterday..
Sure hope it warms up so we can enjoy more of this~

Bon Weekend~

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Those Food and Drink Scallops again of my friends~

I know I have shown you before..and recently..but they are worth repeating~:)
Especially since I received mail asking for a legible version:)

Finally it's in print..Thank you LCBO~

By: Lucy Waverman
A simple herbal dish with flavour that is a remarkable match with Sauvignon Blanc. If chervil is unavailable then use 2 tbsp (30 mL) chopped tarragon. Serve as a first course or add an extra scallop or two per person for a main course.

2 tbsp (30 mL) butter
1 tsp (5 mL) chopped garlic
¼ cup (60 mL) chopped chervil
½ cup (125 mL) fresh bread crumbs
Salt to taste

2 tbsp (30 mL) butter
8 jumbo scallops
Salt and freshly ground pepper
2 tbsp (30 mL) lemon juice
2 tbsp (30 mL) chopped chervil 

1 Preheat oven to 450°F (230°C).

2 Heat butter and garlic in small skillet over medium heat for 30 seconds. Add chervil and bread crumbs. Toss together, season with salt and remove from heat. Cool.

3 Heat butter in nonstick skillet over high heat to sear the scallops. Season scallops with salt and pepper and sear about 1 minute per side or until browned. Transfer scallops, along with browned butter, to an ovenproof baking dish and sprinkle with lemon juice. Scatter over crumbs.

4 Bake for 4 to 5 minutes or until scallops are opaque and crumbs are golden. Serve at once with chopped chervil sprinkled over.

Serves 4

So Good..I recommend you double the browned butter:)

And I added Lemon Verbena~And Calendula ..as a garnish~
It was my last time using them..as today..everything in that area got cut back:(  It's bedtime for our gardens..

This is the best    magazine re  Food/Drink ..around..IMHO.
They are so smart..You are allowed the magazine w/ a purchase of spirits..It is so worth it:)
It is free of charge..The beautifully illustrated pages..entice you to try wonderful recipes..w/out even having to use their products..Other pages highlight their products and the temptation is subtle..And tasteful:)

The Calendulas..in Fronds..remind me of saffron in a way~:)
And if you have never grown Lemon Verbena..I highly recommend it..
It will be on my first to buy list next Spring~
Even more pungent in a way than lemongrass to me.~

The friends that shared that recipe with us..invited us for another lovely meal..and scallops were one of the Hors D'Oeuvres..
They were equally as delicious in a different way so I will be  sharing that recipe too one day~..But first this is just a peek at how they welcome guests:)

There were Prosciutto wraps..the scallops..as hors d'oeuvres..a lovely green gazpacho as a starter..and then we moved on to a very delicious and different Tagliatelle recipe..So different and so good!

Roses..silverware..music..eating outside..Perfect evening~
Eating outside..will be a miracle in the near future..our chairs will be stored..the tables brought in..
Waiting for next year..

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Pic Monkey..Ribbet etc..

Have to admit..I love Photoshop..
But when it comes to really bad photos..PicMonkey etc..help enormously..This photo was overexposed..awful..the subjects were adorable..but the photo was terrible..A few twists on Pic Monkey..
And it's cute to me..

Try!You can add text..special effects..layers..overlays..make-up:)The list goes on and on~

By the wharf ...at Jack Layton Park..Lucas..now 7!  Maxime(Max) 5 and Olivier(Ollie..Wollie..Poodle..Pooch..)now 3.
If you keep the rez high enough they print up perfectly~
There's always a way of saving a bad photo:)

I used the Daguero  effect then played with their Hallloween  effects..
If you've not tried Pic Monkey..now with the Halloween fun things..is the time to experiment~
I've noticed that on many food blogs..they use the effects to professional standards..I am in the learning curve of these great free programs..
And grateful for them~

Ribbet is another fun one..

Sunday, October 7, 2012


Always grateful for them~♥
This weekend is Canadian Thanksgiving.our family came  for dinner last night..
We didn't make the usual turkey..but Ann T's Osso Bucco..I made it again with pork this time ~It's really really good with pork also..and is a bit similar to Giada's Fast and Easy Osso Bucco..You really cannot go wrong with any of Ann's recipes.I have mentioned it before here..but last night was the first time our family tasted it..they both wanted the recipe..so I am talking about it again..:)Perhaps because I used pork the last 2 times..I cook mine longer.Such an easy meal ..all done ahead of time..served on creamy Sweet potatoes and Yukon gold mashed potatoes..

It really wasn't  that pretty out yesterday at all..the night before..fog had stepped in and I stepped out to snap a few photos..clinging wet grass on my crocks  right into and  onto my socks..but worth the heavy humidity ..just to savor the fog~

The leaves are so pretty  right now..almost peak as many are already falling..but  they only really and truly shine in sunshine..Today it's sunny..a sunny chilly Sunday~

You can see the raindrops from the rain..and peek into a very fading gardens..Hopefully they will all be put to rest soon.

I made  the Epicurious Pecan Praline Cheesecake again...for the adults..it is so good..you can find the link here..when I started blogging..didn't know how to post more than one photo:)
And the cute Rice Kripie Candy Corn treats were found on many Pinterest sites..on the Kraft site..but I thought my inspiration came through this one because of the pretty photos..and my daughter had made the watermelon ones  this summer~
You will find the How to's..HERE~
Happy Thanksgiving everyone~This little kiddie dessert even brought out the kid in me.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

October~It's here:)

The end of September and beginning of October have been busy here...
Jacques ..my talented chef..has started making bacon.. pastrami..and pancetta.My fave so far is the pancetta..OK the pastrami straight out of the oven was sublime..but the pancetta? Well just fabulous to me..
I happened to find a beautiful bunch of leeks at the same time..and prior to that some Italian plums..
When friends came for dinner..I pre-Halloweened..with just 2 wee things ..a pumpkin I painted white and adorned..and a bottle of water..with a whole stem and leaves of lemon balm..identified no less with Arsenic:)
such cute graphics I found:)  From Cathe Holden..at Something I made~Thank you and go see:)
I used my grandmother's tablecloth that reminds me of spiderwebs..of the most charming kind:)and set the table in noir et blanc.We had a lovely evening..It was a bit of a birthday celebration also..our friend's..
Not related at all to that evening..we made good use of the pancetta and leeks:)
I made a quiche with the leeks and pancetta:)  easy peasy..  3 lightly beaten  eggs..I pan fried pancetta ..leeks..and shallots..some garlic...kale I had blanched and frozen...added the mix to the beaten eggs..some cream..some seasonings..  mes herbes salées mostly..swiss cheese:)  and topped all w/ blanched Leek that I shaped into flowers and leaves..a;; placed and tucked into a French quiche plate that was papered and buttered  in Phyllo dough~
 .. and a cream of leek and potato soup ensued.. with Jacques' pancetta in Mary's bowls:)The plum cake I have showcased here before..I think I made a whole post on it:)I just did a different twist this time~
I think Jacques favors his pancetta most also.
Fall is a season of bounty..and the colors in the trees bring a sense of..utter gratitude for experiencing such riches.
October IS Awesome♥
Apart from saying goodbye to our gardens.
....but honestly..I have already started  to cut back the gardens..for their winter sleep.. they suffered so much through this summer's drought..they were looking more than forlorn..Still have many to go..but the ones I did do..look fresher and cleaner.
Not my best gardening year at all.
Footnote..one meal I love to make at this time of year..is Martha Stewart's Sesame Chicken in Acorn Squash..we had it tonight..but by the time we ate..dusk had set in:( The nights are getting shorter~
It's  such a pretty fall recipe..It's in one of my Martha Stewart's Quick Cook books..It is delicious.

I did find the recipe here also..and thank you poster~ for you if you want to enjoy it:)

Monday, October 1, 2012

Dorie's Apple Pie~All American:)Here in Canada~

My daughters and their boys went apple picking this weekend..It was chilly and miz out ..think I'll stick to blueberry picking:)I asked   the one who lives on my street to please  bring me back some..Jacques LOVES apple pies..all pies..
So this time  I made Dorie's again..We have 2 faves.. brown bag apple pie..and my daughter's crumb crusted one..But I wanted to see my bluebird of happiness..so used Dorie's..

It was worth it.. I made it deep dish so adjusted some amounts..but you really cannot go wrong with her recipe..It's from the book I bought that is such a keeper book:) :Baking From My Home To Yours..  I just bought Around My French Table..in E-book version..A cookbook should be real.. real pages.. :) I love my Kindle etc..but a cookbook is way better  in real life:)

I used my own pie dough.. but I love how she makes the bottom crust of pies and do it now..always..if I don't blind bake first~
C'est une bonne tarte.. et elle est belle aussi. I admit to adding Cardamom..:)

The apples were McIntosh..and quite gleaming one I buffed them..Our home smelled like my favorite kinds of perfume..HomeScents:)
I apologize for the horrid copy and paste look..but if I had to transcribe every word..because of my extremely poor typing skills..you recipe would not turn out:)

All-American, All-Delicious Apple Pie

For a 9 inch Double Crust

3 cups all purpose flour
¼ cup sugar
1 ½ tsp salt
2 ½ sticks very cold unsalted butter, cut into tbsp size pieces
1/3 cup very cold vegetable shortening, cut into 4 pieces
About ½ cup ice water

Put the flour, sugar, and salt in a food processor fitted with a metal blade, pulse just to combine the ingredients. Drop in the butter and shortening and pulse only until the butter and shortening are cut into the flour. Don’t overdo the mixing- what you’re aiming for is to have some pieces the size of fat green peas and others the size of barley. Pulsing the machine on and off, gradually add about 6 tbsps of the water- add a little water and pulse once, add some more water, pulse again and keep going that way. Then use a few long pulses to get the water into the flour. If, after a dozen or so pulses, the dough doesn’t look evenly moistened or form soft curds, pulse in as much of the remaining water as necessary, or even a few drops more, to get a dough that will stick together when pinched. Big pieces of butter are fine. Scrape the dough out of the bowl and onto a work surface.

Divide the dough in half. Gather each half into a ball, flatten each ball into a disk and wrap each half in plastic. Refrigerate the dough for at least 1 hour before rolling (if your ingredients were very cold and you worked quickly, though, you might be able to roll the dough immediately: the dough should be as cold as if it had just come out of the fridge).

To Roll Out the Dough: Have a buttered 9 inch pie plate at hand.

You can roll the dough out onto a floured surface or between sheets of wax paper or plastic wrap or in a rolling slipcover. If you’re working on a counter, turn the dough over frequently and keep the counter floured. If you are rolling between paper, plastic or in a slipcover, make sure to turn the dough over often and to life the paper, plastic, or cover frequently so that it doesn’t roll into the dough and form creases.

If you’ve got time, slide the rolled out dough into the fridge for about 20 minutes to rest and firm up.
For the Pie

4 pounds (about 6 very large) apples
3/4 cup sugar
Grated zest of 1 lemon
2 tablespoons quick-cooking tapioca
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8-1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon salt 2 tablespoons graham cracker crumbs (or dry bread crumbs)
2 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into bits

For the Glaze (optional)
Milk or heavy cream
Decorating (coarse) or granulated sugar

Getting Ready: Butter a 9-inch deep-dish pie plate (I use a Pyrex pie plate). If you want to use a standard 9-inch pie plate, just reduce the amount of filling by about one quarter.

Working on a well-floured surface (or between wax paper or plastic wrap), roll out one piece of the dough to a thickness of about 1/8 inch. Fit the dough into the buttered pie plate and trim the edges to a 1/2-inch overhang. Roll the other piece of dough into a 1/8-inch-thick circle and slip it onto a baking sheet lined with parchment or a silicone mat. Cover both the circle and the crust in the pie plate with plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 20 minutes, while you preheat the oven and prepare the filling. (If it's more convenient, the crust can be well covered and kept refrigerated overnight.)

Getting Ready to Bake: Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

Peel, core and slice the apples. You've got a choice for slicing: you can cut each apple in half and then slice each half crosswise or lengthwise into slices about 1/4 inch thick, or you can cut the apples into chunks about 1/4 to 1/2 inch on a side. In either case, put the apples into a large bowl and add the sugar, lemon zest tapioca, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Toss everything together really well- I do this with my hands. If you've got a little time, let the mix sit for about 5 minutes, until juice starts to accumulate in the bottom of the bowl.

Remove the pie plate and top crust from the refrigerator and put the pie plate on a baking sheet lined with parchment or a silicone mat. Sprinkle the crumbs evenly over the bottom of the crust-this will help keep it from getting too soggy (some sog is inevitable)- and then turn the apples and their juices into the crust. The apples will heap over the top of the crust. Pat them into an even mound. Dot the apples with the bits of cold butter.

Very lightly moisten the rim of the bottom crust with water, then center the top crust over the apples. (If the crusts-top and bottom- are still very cold and in danger of cracking when you work with them, let them sit at room temperature for about 5 minutes.) Either fold the overhang from the top crust under the bottom crust and crimp the crust attractively, or press the top crust against the bottom crust and trim the overhang from both crusts even with the rim of the pie plate. If you've pressed and trimmed the crust, use the tines of a fork to press the two crusts together securely.

Use a sharp paring knife to cut about 6 slits int eh top crust. I always use the wide end of a piping tip to cut a circle out of the center of the crust as a steam vent. if you'd like, brush the top crust with a little milk or cream and sprinkle it with sugar.I  used the bluebird of happiness..I enjoy using my little pie vents when I can..

Bake the pie for 15 minutes. Lower the oven temperature to 375 degrees F, and bake the pie for another 50 to 60 minutes (total baking time is between 65 and 75 minutes), or until the crust is gorgeously browned and the juices bubble up through the top crust. After about 40 minutes in the oven, if the top crust looks as if it's browning too quickly, cover the pie loosely with a foil tent.I did..

Transfer the pie to a rack and let it rest until it is only just warm or until it reaches room temperature.

Enjoy this beautiful apple season...♥