We have two apple trees nearby that are literally loaded with apples this year. Last night I made a pie to see if these apples are ready for picking, and they are… so now I guess it’s time to start freezing apples for fresh-baked pies for the months ahead! I use a really easy method… I just line a pie plate with aluminum foil, layer in the apples, sugar, spices, etc. and freeze. Decide beforehand, though, what pie plate you plan to bake your apple pies in, or you’ll end up with a frozen pie shape that doesn’t fit your crust!
I start with two large pieces of foil (wide enough to extend past the edges of the pie plate and long enough to fold up over the apples) and seam them together on the long edge with a triple fold. Then I place the foil in the pan with the seam running down the center and mold the foil to the shape of the pan. Then it’s simply a matter of slicing the apples and arranging them in the foil-lined pan, and continuing to “make” the pie. The only difference is that I’m making the pie inside the aluminum foil instead of inside a bottom crust.
Because we like pies with lots of apple filling, I pack the apples firmly and use enough apples to make a nice rounded top. Then I gather the aluminum foil up over the apples and make another seam over the top center of the pie, with the aluminum foil pressed tightly against the apples to keep them in the shape of the pan. Next I fold the sides of the aluminum foil up and seam them too, again keeping the aluminum foil molded tightly against the apples so the rounded shape of the “pie” does not change.
I package these wrapped fillings in plastic freezer bags. Later, when I want to make a pie, I make the bottom crust as usual and sprinkle it with sugar… this keeps the crust from becoming soggy. Then I add the frozen apples (if you used the same pan the frozen shape will exactly fit your pie crust), add the top crust, and bake. The apples should be frozen when the pie goes into the oven.
I use the regular oven temperature and bake the pie as usual, but I allow extra baking time because of the frozen apples. I find it works well to put a sheet of aluminum foil loosely over the top of the pie for the first part of the baking time to avoid over-browning.