A Classic with a Twist, by Milena Gigliotti

Apple pie is a regular guest at Thanksgiving parties across the U.S. In Bolivia, this dessert is not as popular, but those who enjoy it wish it were available in more coffee shops and bakeries. My cousin-in-law, Eliana, is the creator of one of the best apple pies I have tasted in Santa Cruz.

These are the ingredients in her recipe:

  • 250 gr. of flour
  • 50 gr. of butter
  • 370 gr. of condensed milk
  • 4 big apples (red or green)
  • 4 tsp. of cold water
  • 1 tsp. of salt
  • 2-3 lemons
  • 1 tbsp. of cinnamon

Eliana said that before working on the filling of the pie, the dough for the crust must be done first. “Worry about your dough, then about the filling, which is easy.” She sieved the flour and salt onto a clean counter, and then shaped the mix into a circle. I cut the butter into cubes which she distributed atop the flour using a fork. She then added the cold water and continued to mix everything. Once a consistent dough formed, we let it rest and moved on to prepare the filling.Screen Shot 2014-11-23 at 12.01.54 PM

“Worry about your dough, then about the filling.”

After peeling and removing the hearts of the apples, we cut them into thin sheets and sprayed lemon juice over to keep them from turning tawny. She said: “If the apples look brown, nobody will want to eat your pie.” Eliana grabbed the dough and spread it over a previously greased baking pan. Next, she arranged the apple sheets on top of the paste, and poured the condensed milk around it. Finally, she sprinkled cinnamon over the pie and let it bake for 25-35 minutes in the oven.

While waiting for the dessert to be done, I asked Eliana who had taught her the recipe. She told me: “I read about an apple pie recipe on a cooking book I bought a couple of years ago. I changed and added some ingredients, and just hoped for the best.” When she took the pie out of the oven, the smell of cinnamon filled the kitchen. The apples had acquired a golden color and the crust was at point. It was not cloying, and the different flavors made it succulent.



MilenaMilena Gigliotti is a freshman student at International University of Santa Cruz, in Bolivia. She’s a fan of dystopian novels and a pasta lover.

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