Eating an apple pie that’s been baked, frozen, and then thawed definitely isn’t a favorite for many people, regardless of their chef sensibilities. But, that doesn’t mean there’s no way around it to save yourself some time when you need to have your pie ready quicker than you anticipated.
How to Freeze an Apple Pie
So, can you freeze apple pie? Yes, you most certainly can. But the question is not really about can or can’t you, but more about how you’re going to do it. As mentioned, there’s no need to wonder whether to go about freezing pies cooked or uncooked – uncooked all the way if you wish to present your guests/family with a pie that tastes delicious and fresh.
- Choose a Reliable Pan
Once you’re done with making your pie, you obviously have to place it in some kind of a pan. Keep in mind that you’ll use this pan for the freezing and the baking later on. In that respect, you don’t want any unpleasant surprises such as your pan breaking on you. Some ceramic and glass pans can withstand a lot, but if you want to be 100% on the safe side, go with a good-old aluminum pan. If you don’t like the look of it you can just transfer your pie to a more presentable pan once it’s baked.
- Go with a Modest Filling
We all like to show off our culinary skills from time to time; sometimes, it’s tempting to make rich pies with a bunch of apples for the filling – but not when you’re planning on freezing apple pie before baking!
Remember that you’re baking something frozen; if there are too many apples for the filling, the middle of the pie will remain frozen while the ends will be more than ready to be taken out of the oven.
That said, you don’t need more than about 6 1/2- to 7-cups of apples sliced and diced thinly for an average pan of about 9 inches. When you arrange your apples, you should strive for a very compact mound in order to avoid ice crystallization and excess moisture. It’s a good idea to add a bit more cornstarch to the mix than you normally would for fresh baking to combat the unwanted moisture and ice.
- Prep the Pie for Freezing
With everything said and done, it’s time to place your top pastry onto the pie and do your favorite attachment strategy, be it a flute, fork markings, or something else. The most important thing now that you absolutely shouldn’t forget is to make a couple of fork holes in the center of the pie and one larger knife whole near the edge. The fork holes will let the steam through once it’s time for the baking while the knife hole will help you see the juices flowing and allow you to time your frozen pie bake more accurately.
Now it’s time to pop your ready-to-bake pie into a plastic freezer bag. Keep in mind that there’s no need to push all the air out immediately. Leave your pie in a plastic bag in your freezer for about 24 hours and then proceed to squeeze all of the air from it. You can then move it around worry-free that you’re going to disrupt the shape of the entire pie. And the best thing is – you can keep your bagged pie stored in the corner of your freezer for months!
Bagging the pie is absolutely necessary, especially if you have other items in the freezer such as fish and meat; after all, you don’t want your sweet pie mixing up with those.
Plan Your Pie Baking Strategy
Regardless of whether you’re ready to take your homemade pie out of the freezer or work with wholesale frozen pies in a bulk, you’ll have to devise a good strategy for your baking day. Typically, your frozen pie will require about 90 minutes of baking at around 375 degrees F, so work that timing into your schedule. In case you have some other big baking plans for the day, such as turkey, for example, it’s always better to get the pie out of the way first. That way, the pie itself will have ample time to reabsorb the juices. And it’s easy enough to just warm it up later if need be.
- Add the Glaze
Now, before you just chuck the frozen pie into the oven you have to glaze the top crust first. You can use plain water or milk if you wish to keep things simple. But, if you prefer the shiny look of the crust, you can’t go wrong with either an egg glaze or the glaze mixture of heavy cream and sugar. But be careful about how much glaze you’re using; your pie should be covered, but not puddling in the glaze. Once glazed, sprinkle on some sugar, and voila!
- Work the Oven
The first thing you want to do is preheat your oven to 400°F. You can line your sheet with either aluminum foil or parchment, whatever you prefer. Ideally, your oven rack should be closer to the bottom of the oven than the middle, so adjust it if possible. Once you’re positive that the oven is heated enough, put your pie into the oven and reduce the heat to 375°F.
Keep in mind that you shouldn’t open the oven at all for the first hour. You can set a timer just to be on the safe side. And once the hour has passed, open the over, turn the sheet 180 degrees, and continue baking for half an hour more. You’ll notice the juices overflowing during the last 30 minutes of the bake.
As you transfer your pie to the cooling rack, you should wait at least 2 hours for it to cool before cutting into it. Ideally, wait anywhere between 4 and 6 hours for the best taste.
If you still want to bake a fresh pie without the hassle, you can freeze the pastry only. Make the dough, form a disk, wrap tightly in a few layers of plastic wrap and freeze for as long as necessary; it can be stored in a freezer for a couple of months. When you’re ready to use it, thaw it in the refrigerator overnight before rolling it out.
If you’re looking for the best bakery and cake supplies to enhance your business efforts and provide your own clientele with the perfect baked goods, including the delicious frozen pies, don’t hesitate to reach out to us at Medina Baking & Powder Supply. No matter the size of your business, you can count on us for the most affordable prices, fast delivery, and knowledgeable sales staff in South Florida. Give us a call if you need bakery supplies in the areas of the Caribbean, South America, and Central America as well. Your success is our priority.