Pans needed: Bundt cake pan of 10 inches or larger in diameter, preferably a thick or heavy pan. Large bowl to mix crust. Two medium to large size bowls, plus a colander, to drain sliced apples.
Peel and slice apples into equal-sized pieces. (Some folks use thin slices, some use thick slices, and some prefer to cube their apples. This is your preference, but the apple slices should be roughly the same size.) Mix in 1/2 cup sugar. Place a colander into a large bowl, then add the mixed apple slices to the colander. Let the liquid drain from the apple slices for 90 minutes. This will keep the pie filling from becoming runny. (One time, as a sugar-free alternative I used Splenda instead of sugar in the pie, and I discovered that Splenda does not react with apple slices the way sugar does. The apple slices did not drain.)
While the apples are draining, preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and prepare your pie crust.
In a large bowl, mix together the ingredients in order: flour, suet, baking powder, brown sugar. salt. Stir together, then mix in spices: allspice, cardamom, ginger. Add brandy and 1/4 cup water. Stir it all together until it forms a dough. Add in extra water if necessary, a little bit at a time, as you knead in order to produce a solid dough that isn't too moist and doesn't cover your hands with sticky gluten. Once the crust dough is thick in consistency, you can then knead the dough with your hands. If the dough is not at the right consistency then add more water, a tablespoon at a time, until you are left with thick dough and no dry crumbs on the side and bottom of the bowl. Separate the mound of dough into two halves, and roll them into two balls of dough.
Grease the entire inside of the bundt pan with shortening, to prevent sticking when the finished pie comes out.
Press one of the balls of dough with a rolling pin into a flat circle. Place it into the bundt pan, and press it out with your hands so that every inch of the inside of the pan is covered. I found the pie crust was indeed very thick and solid, and it was much easier to roll out with a rolling pin than a typical pie crust. I pressed it into the bundt pan by hand, and spent maybe twenty minutes or more pressing the pie crust up along the inner and outer edges of the pan.
When the apples have finished draining, reserve (keep) the drained apple juice. Return the apples to the big mixing bowl. The reserved apple juice will be used in making the glaze to top the finished pie.
1/4 cup white sugar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
3 tablespoons apple cider (You may even want to substitute fruit-based alcohol if you have it, such as hard cider, applejack brandy, calvados, manzana verde, apple pucker or Southern Comfort.)
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoon butter, softened
1/4 cup corn starch (or tapioca starch if you have it)
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
In a large bowl, mix the drained apples together with the pie filling ingredients. Add the filling to the bundt pan.
Roll the other ball of dough into a second crust to add to the top of the pan – and when the pie is flipped over, this will be the bottom of the pie. Because of this, it will be necessary to double over and press down the edges all around the pan. This will crimp it down with the inner crust, and seal the pie as it bakes in the oven. (The pie crust includes baking powder, and the pie filling includes a tablespoon of vinegar especially to react with the baking powder and cause it to expand.)
Bake the pie in your oven at 350 degrees F for at least 75 to 80 minutes (1 hour plus 15 to 20 minutes).
Remove the pie from the oven. At this point the torture begins! It is absolutely necessary to let the pie sit and settle for one hour before flipping the bundt pan over. After this, wait for another hour before lifting the pan off if the finished pie.
Add 2 cups powdered confectioner's sugar to a medium sized bowl.
Bring applejack brandy to a boil. Lower temperature, and simmer to boil off the alcohol. As the liquor is simmering, add the reserved apple juice from the drained apples. Add 2 tablespoons of butter, and stir until the butter is melted. Add the mixture of brandy and butter to the powdered sugar. Add 2 tablespoons of heavy cream, plus 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon and 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract. Stir it all into a thick liquid or a thin paste. Stir in molasses to give the glaze a darker color. Drizzle the glaze over the pie.
Bundt apple pie after slicing:
I'll admit to being flush with success, but this is still a first-generation recipe and there is definitely room for improvement. (Reduce the amount of suet, possibly; figure out a way to seal the bottom more thoroughly and prevent leaks.) This why I'm making this recipe available for anyone to use and modify to their needs or taste. If you choose to use this recipe, all I ask for is a mention or reference. Above all, I hope you enjoy it.