Recipe of the week: Cookie Baked Apple Pie for Rosh Hashanah

Shortly before the Jewish New Year some years ago, I visited local food blogger Betsy Cohen in her Palm Beach Gardens kitchen for a baking tutorial. The aromas rising from her oven were insane – butter, apples, spices, all warm and tempting.

There, turning golden in a large springform pan, was her adaptation of one of her favorite desserts: a “cookie-baked” apple pie. Think huge, double-crusted butter cookie filled with chunks of fresh Golden Delicious apples. 

The dessert takes the honey-dipped apple tradition of Rosh Hashanah to new, delicious levels. It also makes for a beautifully rustic addition to the table for the holidays. I found it a perfect recipe to repost, as the Jewish New Year arrives Wednesday, Sept. 20. 

Cohen, a talented baker as well as writer, simplifies the process for us in this tutorial



Cookie Baked Apple Pie 

Recipe adapted from “Nick Malgieri’s Perfect Pastry: Create Fantastic Desserts by Mastering the Basic Techniques” (MacMillan, 1998). 

Prep time: 35 minutes 

Cook time: 1 hour 10 minutes 

Serves: 10 to 12 


3 tablespoons unsalted butter 

5 golden delicious apples 

1/2 cup sugar 

Juice of ¼ of a lemon 

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 


16 tablespoons (2 sticks) unsalted butter 

3/4 cup sugar 

4 egg yolks 

1 teaspoon vanilla extract 

2½ cups plus 2 tablespoons all purpose flour 


1 egg yolk, beaten 


  1. You will need one 10” springform pan plus the bottom of a second 10” springform pan or a 10” cake round (that will be used to shape and transfer the top crust.) 
  2. Butter the 10” springform pan. Line the bottom with parchment paper and butter the paper. Set aside. 

For the filling: 

  1. Melt the butter in a large sauté pan. Peel and core the apples and slice in large wedges (there will be 8 wedges per apple). Sauté the apples, sugar, lemon juice and cinnamon over medium heat, covered, for 10 minutes, stirring periodically. Uncover and continue to cook the apples until they are soft and the juices in the pan have evaporated. Cool completely. 
  2. Preheat the oven to 350°. Adjust the rack to the lowest level. 

For the crust: 

  1. Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Scrape down the bowl once. Add the egg yolks and beat until well blended. Mix in the vanilla. Add 2½ cups flour and mix on low speed until all of the flour is mixed in. Do not overbeat. 
  2. Take one half of the dough and form a large disk (about 8” in diameter). Place this in the bottom of the parchment-lined springform pan. Push the dough evenly in the pan so that it covers the bottom and goes up the side 1¼ ”. 
  3. Your hands will be buttery at this point. Wipe one of your hands over the bottom of the extra springform bottom then dust 2 tablespoons of flour over it. The grease from the butter will keep the flour where you need it. 
  4. Take the second half of the dough and form a disk almost the size of the springform bottom. Place it on the springform bottom and push it evenly out to the edge. Set aside. 
  5. Spoon the filling onto the bottom crust and spread evenly around. 
  6. Using a large metal spatula to guide the dough, transfer the top half of the dough onto the cake. It will slide off so be sure to do this over the cake and move your arm back so that the crust can be placed evenly on the cake. Pinch the sides down so that the seam is sealed. 
  7. Brush the top of the cake with the egg yolk. You may take a fork and score it if you like (like a plaid look). Place the springform on a piece of aluminum foil and bake on the lowest rack of the oven at 350° for 50 minutes. Check to be sure that the top is not getting too dark. If it is, cover lightly with a piece of aluminum foil. Remove after 50 minutes and cool on a cooling rack. 

To serve:

Once you have unlatched the springform pan, take a small metal spatula and put it between the cake and the side of the pan to make sure that none of the cake sticks. Release the side completely. To remove the bottom of the springform, cover a 10” cardboard round with plastic wrap. Place this over the top of the cake and gently turn it over. Take off the bottom of the pan and remove the piece of parchment paper. Turn back onto a cakeboard round or serving plate. 

Betsy Cohen’s kitchen notes: 

  • “This pie is incredible warmed with or without ice cream, which is why I prefer to place the Cookie Baked Apple Pie on a cakeboard round vs. serving plate. When I make this early in the day and want to serve it warm for dessert, I place the cardboard round in the oven I have used to cook dinner once the oven is turned off. Five to ten minutes later, I have a warm, delicious cake for my family and friends. As many serving plates are not meant for the oven, the cardboard round is the best option. Once the Cookie Baked Apple Pie comes out of the warmed oven, I place the cardboard round onto a serving plate. 
  • “The apple filling may be made a day ahead and refrigerated overnight. Cool before transferring the filling to a bowl and then place plastic wrap directly on top of the filling to prevent moisture from setting in. 
  • “The pie freezes beautifully.”

Visit Cohen’s “Desserts Required” blog for more holiday recipes. 

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