When I worked at De Taart Van m’n Tante, a famous bakery in Amsterdam, the apple pie was one of the most popular desserts we sold. We could hardly press the crusts and peel the apple fast enough, as every order seemed to contain at least one of the delectable desserts. Dutch apple pies are very different from American apple pies.
Appeltaart (apple pie) in Dutch is translated as apple tart; and true to their Dutch name, apple pies in Holland are open faced and created like a tart. The crusts are pressed rather than rolled, filled with spiced apples (the spices typically include cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice and some lemon), covered, and baked.
One of my favorite things about this style of pie is the way the crust rises into the bottom layer of apples, which not only tastes delicious but also makes it easily sliceable. In the cafes all over Amsterdam you can buy appeltaart met slagroom (apple pie with whipped cream). Even though this is a vegan version, feel free to top it with whipped cream!
Vegan Dutch Apple Pie
For this recipe, you want to choose an apple that cooks reasonably fast but doesn’t turn to applesauce; I used ginger gold. The cooking time will vary depending on how long your apples take to cook; this can be anywhere from 45 minutes to 1 ½ hours. Be sure to allow it cool completely before slicing, as the juices need to thicken.
- 1 ¼ cup white spelt flour
½ cup plus 2 tablespoons whole spelt flour
½ cup plus 2 tablespoons brown rice flour
¾ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon sea salt
6 ½ tablespoons melted extra-virgin coconut oil
6 ½ tablespoons maple syrup
1 tablespoon water, plus more as needed
- 8 medium (3 ¾ lb) apples, peeled, cored, and diced in ¾-inch dice
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon ground allspice
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- Pinch sea salt
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon maple sugar
- 2 tablespoons arrowroot powder
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. Line the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan with parchment paper -- do this by flipping the base over and placing a larger square piece of parchment on top of it. Attach the sides, keeping the paper flush against the base. Turn it upside down and fold paper into the center, oil all the way up the sides of the pan and set aside.
3. Add flours, baking powder, and salt to a medium bowl and stir to combine.
4. In another bowl, whisk together the coconut oil, maple syrup, and water.
5. Add to flour mixture and stir to combine. Mixture should form a firm, soft dough; add more water -- a teaspoon at a time -- if mixture is slightly dry. Evenly press into pan, pressing all the way up the sides and set aside.
6. Add apples to a large bowl, along with remaining ingredients and toss until evenly combined.
7. Pour apple mixture into the crust and lightly press down to fit all the apples in. Cover with parchment paper and then foil. Seal it well, place on a baking sheet, and bake for 45 minutes.
8. Press the foil down with a towel to force juices up over the surface of the apples. Test a few apples with a small sharp knife, if they are still firm, re-cover pie and continue baking for another 15 to 30 minutes until apples are tender but not mushy.
9. Once apples are cooked through, remove cover and bake another 45 minutes.
10. Pie is ready when the juices have thickened and edge of crust is a deep golden.
11. Remove from oven and set aside to cool completely before running a pallet knife around the edges of the pan and carefully removing sides. Slice and serve.