Sour Cream Apple Pie with Norwegian Gjetost
We love the creamy, caramel flavor of Norwegian gjetost cheese and found it makes a wonderful addition to apple pie. Gjetost is made from a combination of both cow and goat's milk and has a creamy, fudge-like consistency and nutty, caramel flavor. Our filling also calls for a little sour cream, which adds a creamy balance to the gjetost. This is a very easy pie to make; our crust is a no-roll variety and our quick streusel topping is made with crunchy flake cereal.
- For the crust:
- 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 3 tablespoons cold milk
- For the filling:
- 6 cups sliced apples
- 2 tablespoons sour cream
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon cardamom
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 2 ounces Norwegian gjetost cheese, grated (see notes)
- For the streusel topping:
- 1/2 cup crushed cornflakes (or other unsweetened flake cereal)
- 1/4 cup flour
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon cardamom
- 4 tablespoons melted butter
Combine the flour, salt, sugar and cinnamon in a mixing bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk the oil and milk until creamy and well blended. Pour over the dry ingredients and mix with a fork to form a moist dough. Place in the bottom of a 9-inch pie plate and flatten with the palm of your hand. Using your fingers, gently push the crust to the edge and up the sides of the pie plate, taking care to make it as even as possible. Prick the bottom and sides with the tines of a fork, cover loosely with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour before filling and baking.
Special Note: This crust is an adaptation of a recipe called Pat-A-Pan Piecrust from The Amish Cook's Baking Book by Lovina Eicher with Kevin Williams. It's a wonderful collection of wholesome recipes for home baking. Check out our review below for more information.
Preheat the oven to 425°F.
Blend the sour cream, lemon juice, sugar, cinnamon, cardamom, salt and flour together in a large bowl. Add the apples and toss to coat well. Sprinkle the bottom of the pie crust with about 1/3 of the grated gjetost. Add about 1/2 of the apple mixture and spread evenly. Top another 1/3 of the cheese, leaving the remaining 1/3 for the last 2 minutes of baking. Top with the remaining apples. Place in the oven and bake for 25 minutes, shielding the edges of the crust with foil as soon as they turn golden brown.
While the pie is in the oven, combine the crushed cornflakes, flour, sugar, cinnamon, cardamom and melted butter in a small bowl. Remove the pie after the first 25 minutes and spread the topping over the top as evenly as possible. Return to the oven and bake for an additional 15 minutes, or until the topping is bubbling and golden brown and the apples are tender. Immediately sprinkle on the remaining cheese and place the pie back in the oven for a minute or two until it melts. Remove and cool on a rack to room temperature.
Makes 1 9-inch pie
Recipe Notes & Substitutions:
If you don't keep ground cardamom on hand you can replace it with pumpkin pie spice or just extra cinnamon. If you can't find the gjetost, omit it and replace half of the sugar in the filling (1/4 cup) with light brown sugar and add an extra 1/2 tablespoon of flour.
Gjetost (pronounced "yay-toast") develops its distinctive color and flavor because the milk sugars are caramelized during the cheese-making process. The cheese is slightly sweet and nutty and has a smooth, rich texture. We used Ski Queen gjetost, which we buy at our local Whole Foods, but we've had other brands in the past that we found at Scandinavian markets. Gjetost generally comes in an 8-ounce block. It's delicious when brought to room temperature, sliced and served with Norwegian flatbread.
The Amish Cook's Baking Book
by Lovina Eicher and Kevin Williams
Hardcover (225 pages) | Find on Amazon
The Amish Cook's Baking Book is a collection of over 100 time-tested recipes that give us a delicious glimpse of Amish culture and tradition.
The Amish style of baking is about simple flavors, wholesome local ingredients, basic equipment and straightforward methods.
The book is divided into six logical chapters ~ Pies; Breads, Rolls, and Pastries; Cookies; Cakes; Bars and Brownies; and Special Occasions.
Every recipe is prefaced with helpful notes from the author and the instructions are clear and concise enough for even novice bakers to achieve good results. In addition, guidelines for storage and freshness are included in every recipe ~ handy information that's often overlooked in cookbooks.
Here are some more of our favorite recipes ~
- Swiss Custard Peach Pie ~ fresh peaches baked into an easy custard made with eggs and sweetened condensed milk
- Dilly Bread ~ a moist flavorful yeast bread made with cottage cheese and dill
- Apple Cookies ~ a soft, cinnamon-spiced cookie made with apple chunks, raisins and walnuts
- Pumpkin Sheet Cake ~ a super-moist cake made with pureed pumpkin, spices and nuts that needs nothing more that a dusting of powdered sugar
- Halfway Bars ~ this easy, quick recipe has the flavor of chocolate chip cookies and the texture of a brownie
The Amish Cook's Baking Book is really all about the fun of baking and the joy of sharing the end results, and we think it's a great volume to have on your bookshelf.