September 26 is Johnny Appleseed day! Johnny Appleseed, born John Chapman, is both an American legend and a true historical figure. John Chapman was born in Massachusetts in 1774 but left home at an early age to head west. Similar to the legend, John became an orchardist and a pioneer. In fact, the common image of Johnny Appleseed spreading apple seeds everywhere he went is not too far from the truth.
Johnny Appleseed planted apple nurseries in many parts of the then frontier including Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois and West Virginia. He would plant a nursery, leave it to be tended by neighbors and move on to plant another. John would return to each nursery every couple of years to perform maintenance. Johnny Appleseed shared the proceeds of his nurseries with the neighbors who helped maintain them during his travels. As Johnny Appleseed traveled around the country he gained fame for his warm and generous spirit. John lived a bare bones life, giving much of his earnings to charity and preaching the gospel everywhere he visited, oftentimes in exchange for room and board.
Celebrate a true American folk hero today by taking advantage of the bounty that Johnny Appleseed left behind. To help, I am going to share my favorite apple pie recipe with all of you!
Pie Crust I recommend purchasing pre-made crust from the store. A solid pre-made crust is just as good as the home made variety!
– 6 large apples. I like to mix and match the varieties, it makes for a more complex and tasty pie!
– 1/3 cup granulated sugar
– 2 tbsp flour
– 1 egg
– Cinnamon and allspice to taste
* If you are feeling exotic, a little Chinese 5 spice is an interesting addition.
Salted Caramel Sauce
– ½ cup heavy cream
– 2 ½ tbsp of unsalted sweet cream butter
– ½ tsp of fleur de sel (sea salt) *Do not use table salt, it doesn’t taste right or have the right texture, if you don’t have sea salt, kosher salt is the best substitute.
– ¾ cup granulated sugar
– 1 tbsp corn syrup (this helps to keep your caramel smooth)
– 2 tbsp water