Food! Glorious Food!

Rose Apple Custard Pie

One of my favorite things to make during the holidays is my special Rose Apple Custard Pie.  With it’s perfectly browned apples, sweet vanilla custard, and delicious cinnamon spice, it’s the one thing I look forward to eating after any holiday dinner.  Bye-bye pumpkin pie!!

It’s best to use a mandolin slicer if you have one, but if not you can easily prepare this dish at home with a little more time and patience.  I personally don’t use the slicer – I take my time and cut each apple slice to the semi-perfect thickness.  Whenever I bite into a thicker than usual apple slice, I think of all my hardwork and how that little sucker wouldn’t have tasted so goood if it were thinner. 🙂

For my recipe, I use a frozen pie crust.  I’m sure it would taste a lot better with homemade, but ain’t nobody got time for that when you’re spending a half hour cutting apples into 1/8″ slices by hand.

This recipe makes one pie, but I usual make two at the same time and hide the other one until after the family leaves so I can eat a whole one by myself in the dark.  Just kidding.  I eat the whole thing with the lights on…. duh.  Plus, the frozen pie crusts are usually sold in doubles so it just makes sense to do both at the same time.

Also, the recipe calls for Honey crisp apples, but I’ve used many other types and they all come out tasting great.  However, some types end up getting a tough skin after baking, or some turn too soggy after soaking, so it’s best to stick with Honey crisp.  I’ve also used Braeburn apples, and those also worked very well for this recipe.  

I’ve not a professional chef by any means, so if you’ve tried this recipe and would like to make any suggestions or review, feel free to do so!  I always appreciate constructive feedback!

1 pie crust, premade or homemade
3 large Honey Crisp apples
½ cup brown sugar
¼ cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
1-½ teaspoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
3 tablespoons strawberry preserves
Egg wash

For the Custard:
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups milk
2 egg yolks, lightly beaten
2 teaspoons vanilla extract


1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (175 degrees Celsius).  Set out the frozen pies to defrost on counter for 10-15 minutes. 

2. Peel and core the apples, and cut in half. Scoop out the centers with the seeds.  Using a sharp knife or a mandolin, slice each apple into ⅛-inch thick slices.

3. In a large bowl, combine the brown sugar, granulated sugar, ground cinnamon, ground nutmeg, salt, melted butter, and lemon juice. Toss in the apples.  Let the apples sit for 30 minutes to release their juices.

4.   Set the empty pie crusts into the oven for 5 minutes, then remove and cool.

5. Make the custard filling : In a small saucepan, combine the sugar, flour and salt. Stir in milk until smooth. Cook and stir over medium-high heat until thickened and bubbly. Reduce heat to simmer and stir 2 minutes longer.

6. Remove from the heat. Stir a small amount of hot filling into egg yolks; return all to the pan.

7. Bring to a gentle boil, stirring constantly; cook and stir 2 minutes longer. Remove from the heat. Gently stir in vanilla. Pour into crust.

8. Strain all the liquid out of the apples and discard juice.  Starting at the outside edge, begin to place the apple slices into the pie dish in circles, snugly overlapping the apple slices and working toward the center of the dish. Fill in any spaces or gaps with remaining apples slices so they are packed tightly in the pie dish.

9. Brush the top of rose petals with strawberry jelly.

8. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes, or until the apples are tender.

9. Remove the pie from the oven and remove foil. Cool on a wire rack for 1 hour. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours before serving.