Did you know…? Fast facts about Apple Pie

 In Blog Post
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Any way you slice it…apple pie is a traditional part of a family fall or winter celebration. It conjures warm kitchens, homemade meals and a table of familiar faces. Did you ever consider, though, what makes an apple pie so delicious? 

If you haven’t, don’t worry. TeakOrigin has done the thinking for you. Our dedicated team of food scientists and spectrometry specialists spent an afternoon talking pie – and eating it. Did you know that the nutritional value of apples (and pie!) changes once you cook them apples?

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Here’s some fun facts about the nutrition and taste of apple pie.

  • Cooked fruit is easier to digest. Cell structure breaks down when you heat (or freeze) any sort of biological material. 
  • Heat “denatures” the enzymes that turn an apple brown, so no oxidation takes place when cooking. Blanching apple slices in boiling water for two minutes and then rinsing them in cold water will also denature the enzyme.
  • Cut vents in the top of your apple pie. Apples are mostly moisture, so the vents let steam out so it doesn’t remain trapped in your pie, making it soggy.
  • Let a pie cool before you eat it. Pectin, a naturally occurring starch in fruits and vegetables, seizes up as it cools, holding the pie together.
  • Sugars in apples caramelize when heated, burning and browning like a marshmallow and creating the toasty flavors we know and love.
  • Brush milk and then sugar on the outside of the crust; it forms “growing” chemical reactions that give the pie more sweetness and crunch.
  • There’s no Vitamin C in apple pie! The Vitamin is chemically delicate and disappears when heated.
  • Add some lemon juice. Acidity counterbalances sweetness so you don’t end up with a sugar bomb of a pie.
  • Choose the right apple! Honeycrisp and Fuji apples are popular for apple pie, but steer clear of Red Delicious. Their tough skin has a bitter taste!
  • Apples that are high in acid — Honeycrisps and Fujis, no surprise — are a good bet because acids enhance other flavors. High-acid content helps them stand up to the flavor- and structure-sapping effect of cooking heat.
  • Do you want a pie that looks as good as it tastes? Acids also strengthen pectin, which is the glue that helps apple slices keep their shape.   

Pie is personal. Whether or not to add lemon to the mix, brush milk on the crust, or cut vents in the top of the pie comes down to your taste preference. We hope these tips will help you bake the most delicious, perfect pie — easy as apple pie.

Interested in learning about the nutritional reality of the food you buy and eat?