We celebrated my father-in-law’s birthday this weekend. He’s a retiree from classic instrument building. I guess I am inspired by this family for them making so many things by their own hands, or by themselves. I start to get into making food because of this.
My father-in-law made forte pianos which are the classic instruments played during Mozart’s time. He renovated and built several old instruments displayed in museums in Antwerp. He learned all those techniques by himself, making me believe that we all can make things, including making food. That’s why I always wanted to tell visitors of Belgium, it is more than just chocolates, waffles, and fries in Belgium.
It doesn’t matter if you are interested in museums, you’ll definitely be amazed by all those old instruments collected in the Instrument Museum in Brussels and Vleeshuis in Antwerp. If you want to see instrument renovated by my father-in-law you can visit the Vleeshuis and Plantin-Moretus museums in Antwerp.
Forte piano has more pleasant sounds than a normal piano. A lot of pianists wish to play this kind of instrument very much. Sometimes there are concerts hosted in the museums, unfortunately I don’t have related information at hand. I know Belgium is so small, can’t represent the whole of Europe, but it is definitely fascinating.
Ok, we should get back to our 12 mini apple pies. It is getting cold here in Belgium. Since my-father-in-law is a big fan of eating apples, nothing suits him better than apple pies. We like mini apple pies than making a big one, as it is easier to share. So below you’ll find our recipe.
300 gram flour
1 teaspoon of salt
1 tablespoon maple syrup or 2 tablespoons of honey
150 grams marzipan
4 big apples, diced into little pieces
200 grams of plant-based margarine
agar-agar (one little bag... a couple of grams)
Juice from 2 big lemons
1 tablespoon of plant-based oil
1 tablespoon of cinnamon
Step By Step
1) The dough
Put the flour, salt and margarine in a bowl and knead it until it is a consistent ball of dough. Roll it into a cylinder and put it in the fridge to let it cool off.
2) The filling
Dice the apples into small cubes and fry them in a pan with some plant-based oil.
Add the lemon juice, honey, agar-agar and cinnamon and after a couple more minutes take it away from the heat. Let it cool off while you do the next step.
3) make the pie-crust-cups
Take the dough cylinder out of the fridge. Cut it into round slices, a couple of millimeter thick.
In preferably a silicone muffin shape for 12 muffins, or something similar, create the pie crust shapes from the dough slices. Should be just enough for 12 mini pies.
Cut the marzipan into 12 pieces, and spread this out at the bottom of each crust shape. It will help to keep the bottom from being too wet/soft by being a barrier between the filling and the dough, and it's also super-tasty.
Now using a spoon, scoop the apple mixture into these crust shapes until they are all full. You can normally fill it higher than the edges, it should be thick enough to stay in place.
Now put it in the oven at 200°C for about 30 minutes, or more - depending on your oven. Check regularly, if you are uncertain about the temperature. After that, take them out and let them cool off.