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Hoosier Mama

Chicago is lucky to have a small (but mighty) pie shop called Hoosier Mama [1]. I knew this the first time I sat in their tiny storefront shop and ate a slice of warm apple pie with a cup of coffee on a rainy autumn afternoon. I am reminded of this good fortune every time I pick up a pie from their stand at the farmers market. And I was reminded of it again last week when I bought a copy of their wonderful new cookbook, The Hoosier Mama Book of Pie [2].

Paula Haney and Allison Scott managed to translate everything that is charming and wonderful about their shop into a cookbook that includes the recipe for every pie I have ever seen them sell. It is an impressive (and generous!) collection ranging from sweet to savory. There are also handpies, quiches and even suggestions for what to do with dough scraps. Techniques are carefully laid out and encouragingly explained. The book is the perfect kitchen companion and one that I know I will return to often.

My two favorite Hoosier Mama pies are their funeral pie (a heady collection of raisins and autumn spices that you should not wait for a funeral to make!) and this Dutch Apple Pie with Sour Cream Custard. This pie, this magical pie, is one of the best things I have ever eaten. Truth. I had long considered cherry pie to be my favorite but questioned everything when I first tasted this beauty (Dear Cherry Pie, Don’t feel bad. I now consider you tied for my favorite. Love, Tim). I think the easiest way of explaining this masterpiece is to say that it is as if a pie, a coffee cake, and a cheesecake had a baby. And really, what could be better? I knew, regardless of season, this was the first recipe I needed to try. It is as magnificent as I remember. It is also worth noting that in five years of blogging, and almost eight years of loving, I have never seen Bryan so excited by something I baked. He went crazy for this thing.

Hoosier Mama will always be my favorite pie shop and now there is a chance, even if you have never been to Chicago, that is might become yours, too.

A few steps here, but nothing difficult. I think it is easiest to start a day in advance…keeping in mind it needs to chill. Another beautiful thing about this pie is that is keeps for 2-3 days in the fridge. Pies are a little more work than your average dessert, so it is nice to have a recipe that will be around for a few days.

Dutch Apple Pie with Sour Cream Custard (recipe by Paula Haney from The Hoosier Mama Book of Pie [2])

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Spread the apple pieces over the bottom of the pie shell. Place on a baking sheet and set aside.

Place the sugar, flour, and salt in a small bowl and whisk until well-combined.

Whisk together the sour cream, egg, and vanilla paste.

Add the dry ingredients and whisk until smooth. Pour into the prepared pie shell, over the apples. With a spatula, submerge any apples that float to the top.

Bake for 20-25 minutes, until the edge of the filling is slightly puffed and the center is dry to the touch.

While the pie bakes, prepare the Walnut Streusel.

When the pie is ready, gently scatter the streusel over the top of the pie and bake for 10 to 15 minutes more, until the streusel is crispy.

Cool to room temperature, then chill in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour before slicing.


Walnut Streusel (enough for one pie)

Combine the flour, walnuts, granulated sugar, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt in a medium bowl.

Pour in the melted butter and mix with your fingers (or a fork) until the mixture resembles coarse meal.