All-American apple pie is star of fair contest

By Maura Wery

There is no such thing as a bad apple pie. Those were the sentiments expressed Sunday by the three judges for the apple pie contest at the Riley County Fair. This was the first year for the pie contest. Riley County Extension Agent Ginny Bernard said the contest was created to go along with the All-American theme of the fair. Fourteen pies were entered, 12 traditional and two other. The judging panel was made up of Mark Fritzson, County Commissioner Dave Lewis and research professor Becky Miller. 

Several different kinds of pie were created — pies with double crust, deep dish, lattice crusts and crust created with butter, shortening and a combination of both. Soft apples, crisp apples, granny smith and Fuji apples were all used in the fillings. Filling spices varied from the traditional sugar and cinnamon to applesauce and allspice.

The other category featured a recipe from a magazine in 1943 that included orange rind and citrus flavors alongside apples. The other category also had a bumbleberry pie, which is a pie filled with rhubarb, strawberries, apple and a triple berry mix. It was such an explosion of flavor that Miller called it “Really delightful.”

The winner of the traditional category was Twila Hoffman with her French apple pie. Apples, cinnamon and sugar make up the filling. The bottom is a traditional crust, but on top is a streusel crust. It pairs well with the filling and makes it sweet and satisfying. The winner of the other category was Elizabeth Krieger with her bumbleberry pie. With its creative mix of apple and berries, it was just different enough to catch the judges’ attention but still filled with delicious flavor.

French Apple Pie


Pie crust:

1 cup flour

1/2 cup butter-flavored shortening

1/4 cup cold water


3/4 cup sugar

1 teaspoon cinnamon

5 apples, sliced and peeled

1 tablespoon margarine


1/3 cup butter or margarine

1/3 cup brown sugar

3/4 cup flour


To make pie crust: cut shortening into flour until fine. Stir in water. Mix just enough to combine. Round into ball and let rest. 


Peel and slice apples. Place in a large bowl. Roll out pie dough on floured surface and place in pie pan.  Heat oven to 400 degrees.


Mix sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle over apples. Dot with margarine.


Heap in pastry lined pan. In a small bowl, mix butter, brown sugar, and flour. Mix until crumbly and sprinkle over apples.


Press down into pan. Bake for 45-55 minutes.


—Recipe courtesy Twila Hoffman



Bumbleberry Pie



Pie crust:

1 cup cake flour

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 cup butter-flavored shortening

2 tablespoons sugar

1/2 cup milk

1/4 cup ice water


2 cups thinly sliced apples or apple chunks

1 cup fresh rhubarb

1 cup sliced fresh strawberries

2 cups frozen berry mix

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 cup white sugar

1/3 cup all-purpose flour

3 tablespoon tapioca

3 tablespoon margarine, melted

Sugar for crust and flour for rolling



To make pie crust: Combine cake flour and all-purpose flour in a bowl. Cut in shortening. Stir in sugar, salt, milk and water to form dough. Divide into two balls. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.


For filling: In a large bowl, combine all apple, rhubarb, strawberries, frozen berries and lemon juice. Mix together sugar, flour, and tapioca; gently toss with fruit mixture.


Line a 9-inch pie pan with a pie crust for the bottom. Be sure to leave enough dough to seal with top crust. Spoon the fruit in the uncooked pie crust.  Roll out top crust for cutting lattice or for topping.


For lattice top cut 1/2-inch long strips of dough. Alternate strips to create a lattice pattern. Seal edges.


Brush crust with melted butter and sprinkle with sugar.


Bake for 50-60 minutes or until golden brown.


—Recipe courtesy Elizabeth Krieger

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