Whistlin’ “Dixie”

On a recent trip to Door County Wisconsin, where cherries reign, it was apple harvest time. Honey Crisp is their local hero and markets everywhere had plenty. I schlepped a bag home, and decided it was apple pie time. However I didn’t want to use the oh-so-valuable Honey Crisps in a pie (great apples are in short supply in middle Tennessee), so I made a trip to the local produce stand and got some Tennessee “Dixie Reds” (who knew?), which I had never heard of. They proved to be fabulous, and Sam ate so many, that I actually did have to supplement the pie with  a Honey Crisp or two.

Tart, crisp Tennessee"Dixie Reds" proved to be as fabulous in this pie as for eating out of hand.

This has been my go-to apple pie since uh hum…1993, which is when it appeared in Women’s Day magazine. I’ve adapted it some over the years so that it’s a bit different, but not much.  I remember that the photo of the pie on the cover (which has long since been lost) was so great looking that I bought the magazine and made it the same  day. It has a thick crunchy streusel mixture over thinly sliced apples, so thin, that they meld into each other and create this dense fruit layer that contrasts with the thick crunchy streusel. It’s best the same day it’s made, but if you cover it loosely, the streusel will stay crunchy.  If you don’t have Dixie Reds, tart Granny Smiths work great here too.

Streusel topped pie ready for the oven.

Pie Time!

Apple Crunch Pie

1 9-inch pie crust


¾ cup flour

2 tablespoons cornmeal

¼ cup sugar

¼ cup brown sugar

1 teaspoon cinnamon

6 tablespoons cold butter


6 large tart apples, peeled and thinly sliced (about 2 ½ pounds)

1 tablespoons lemon juice

½ cup sugar

3 tablespoons flour

½ teaspoon cinnamon

Freshly grated nutmeg

1. Place pie pastry in 9-inch pie plate. Heat oven to 450F.

2. To make streusel, place flour cornmeal, sugars and cinnamon in a bowl (or if you already used the processor for the pie crust, it will do quick job of the streusel too).  Add cold butter in small pieces and work with hands until coarse crumbs form.

3. In a large bowl, combine apples, lemon juice, sugar, flour cinnamon and nutmeg. Pile apple mixture into (uncooked) pie crust. Pat streusel over apples. Bake for 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 375 and bake 45 minutes or until pie is bubbly and apples are tender.  Cool. 10 servings.


One thought on “Whistlin’ “Dixie”

  1. What a great looking pie. I like the topping and how it looks so crispy-crumbly. Thanks for telling me about the Dixie Reds…indeed, who knew?
    Ta….I must run down to the market to see if there are some left!

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