Here’s the thing… I love pie. Love, love, love it! But at Passover, when leavening is not an option, making a tasty pie crust becomes much more difficult. This recipe evolved out of my need for a Passover pie substitute (because let’s face it– it’s really, really hard to get through an entire week without pie). I did away with the crust entirely and instead relied on matzo cracker crumbs to hold the filling together. The result is something between an apple crumble, a pan dowdy and a pie. Whatever you want to call it, it’s delicious!
Bake this Passover dessert in an old-fashioned pie dish, and nobody will complain about the missing crust… the flavor is very similar to a nutty apple pie. The candied pecans add a crunchy sweet topping to this decadent Passover treat. Serve ala mode for extra deliciousness.
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- 5 ripe granny smith apples - peeled, cored, and chopped
- 1/4 cup butter or margarine, divided
- 1/2 cup applesauce
- 1/3 cup white sugar
- 5 tbsp brown sugar, divided
- 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
- 1/2 lemon, juiced
- 3 egg matzos, crushed into large crumbs
- 2 large eggs
- 1/2 tsp salt
- Nonstick cooking oil spray
- 3/4 cup finely chopped pecans
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a medium saucepan, melt 2 tbsp butter or butter substitute. Add applesauce, white sugar, 2 tbsp brown sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg and lemon juice. Stir till well combined, then bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat to medium and add diced apples to pan. Stir apples till they are well coated with sugar mixture. Cover the pan and cook over medium heat for exactly 8 minutes, stirring occasionally. Do not overcook. Uncover apples at the end of cooking and remove from heat; allow to cool.
- Meanwhile, place crushed matzos into a large mixing bowl and cover with water. Let matzos soak for 1 ½ minutes (no longer), then drain in a colander. Gently squeeze the matzo crumbs in the colander to remove excess moisture.
- In a small bowl, beat the eggs with the salt.
- Add eggs to the matzo and stir till well combined.
- Pour cooled apples and sugary syrup from the pan into the mixing bowl with the matzos. Stir till combined. Reserve the pan.
- Spray a deep pie dish generously with cooking oil spray. Pour the apple mixture into the pie dish.
- In the same saucepan you used to cook the apples, melt 2 tbsp butter, or butter substitute, then stir in 3 tbsp brown sugar and mix to form a thick syrup.
- Stir chopped pecans in the syrup till they are well coated. Remove pan from heat.Sprinkle candied pecans evenly over the top of the apple pie.
- Bake pie for 45-50 minutes, until the top is golden brown and pie is cooked through. Serve warm.