Hot Toddy Apple Pie

If you love a cozy hot toddy, this apple pie is for you! We poached the apples in a warm whiskey, lemon and honey mixture to soak up all the delicious flavors, then simmered down the poaching liquid into a scrumptious, sticky hot toddy caramel sauce for stirring into the filling and drizzling on top. By Arlyn Osborne for Food Network Kitchen
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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 6 hr 35 min (includes cooling and chilling times)
  • Active: 1 hr 15 min
  • Yield: 8 servings
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3 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting (see Cook's Note)

2 tablespoons granulated sugar

1/8 teaspoon baking powder

Pinch of kosher salt

1/4 cup cold vegetable shortening

2 sticks (1 cup) cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces

1 tablespoon whiskey

8 to 10 tablespoons ice water

1 large egg, lightly beaten

Coarse sugar, for sprinkling

Hot Toddy Apple Filling and Caramel:

1/2 cup granulated sugar

2 cups whiskey

1 cup honey

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice

3 whole cloves

2 cinnamon sticks

4 pounds assorted apples (such as McIntosh, Honeycrisp, Braeburn, Granny Smith and/or Golden Delicious), peeled and sliced 1/4 inch thick)

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

1/4 cup heavy cream

4 tablespoons unsalted butter


  1. For the crust: Pulse the flour, granulated sugar, baking powder and salt in a food processor to combine. Add the shortening and pulse until the mixture looks like coarse meal. Add the butter and pulse to pea-size pieces. Add the whiskey and pulse until just incorporated. Pulse in the ice water, 1 tablespoon at a time, until the dough holds together when pinched. Turn out the dough onto a large piece of plastic wrap and gather together, using the plastic wrap to help you. Divide into 2 pieces and gently pat each into a disk; wrap tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm, at least 1 hour and up to 24 hours.
  2. For the hot toddy apple filling and caramel: Add the granulated sugar and 4 cups water to a large pot. Cook over high heat until the sugar is dissolved, about 2 minutes. Stir in the whiskey, honey, lemon juice, cloves and cinnamon sticks. Bring to a boil. Stir in half of the apples and bring back to a boil, then reduce to a simmer over medium-low heat. Cook, stirring frequently, until the apples are tender but not mushy, about 7 minutes. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the apples to a large bowl. Add the remaining apples to the poaching liquid and repeat the poaching process. When all the apples are in the bowl, add the ground cinnamon and ginger and stir to combine. Set aside to cool. 
  3. Make the hot toddy caramel: Remove the cinnamon sticks and cloves from the poaching liquid and bring to a boil over high heat. Cook, whisking occasionally, until the mixture is syrupy and reduced to about 1 1/4 cups, 30 to 35 minutes. (It may bubble up, so keep an eye on it.) Add the heavy cream and 2 tablespoons of the butter and cook, whisking constantly, until the butter is melted and the mixture is slightly thickened, about 2 minutes. Stir 2 tablespoons of the hot toddy caramel into the bowl with the apples and let cool completely.  
  4. Transfer the remaining hot toddy caramel to a microwave-safe bowl. Let cool completely, then cover and refrigerate. The caramel will continue to thicken as it cools. You should end up with about 1 cup of caramel. 
  5. Roll out 1 disk of dough into a 12-inch round on a lightly floured surface. Ease into a 9-inch pie plate. Roll out the remaining disk of dough into a 12-inch round on a lightly floured surface. Transfer to a baking sheet, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to use. 
  6. Spoon the apple filling into the prepared pie crust and dot with the remaining 2 tablespoons butter. Lay the dough round over the filling. Pinch the overhanging dough together and fold it under itself; crimp the edge with your fingers. Cut a few slits in the top crust to allow steam to escape. Brush the crust with the beaten egg and sprinkle with coarse sugar. Refrigerate 1 hour.  
  7. Position an oven rack in the lower third of the oven, put a baking sheet on the rack and preheat to 400 degrees F. Bake the pie on the hot baking sheet until the crust is golden, 60 to 70 minutes. Transfer to a rack and let cool at least 2 hours. 
  8. Reheat the caramel sauce before serving and drizzle over each slice. 

Cook’s Note

When measuring flour, we spoon it into a dry measuring cup and level off excess. (Scooping directly from the bag compacts the flour, resulting in dry baked goods.)

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